Communication is defined as the process where it begins with the sender of the message in an encoded format and passes it on through various channels before it actually is received by the receiver and is further decoded. The entire process is only successful in case the messages sent by the sender are interpreted in the same manner as intended to. In case, while the messages are in the process there is any kind of disturbances or blocks the message may get destroyed and prove harmful. Due this very fact the employees and managers in organizations face tremendous problems where they end up blaming each other and damage the operational environment.
Communication is something which can only be done in the desired manner if the person has the right communication skills to pass on the messages (ENotes 2012). While businesses and organizations function globally there are three forms of communication skills which are used. They are:
- Oral: It includes presentations, critical listening, Body Language, etc.
- Written: In this form of communication the things which are important are the writing skills, ability of critical reading, presentation of data in the desired manner, etc.
- Non-Verbal: One of those forms of communication skills which are highly noticed and usually natural in the employees are the non-verbal forms. Here the things such as audience awareness, personal presentation skills, and body language are very important.
There are techniques and ways through which people have tried to improve their communication skills, even larger organizations lay a lot of stress on ensuring that the level of communication skills for their employees is among the best. However in order to improve communication skills it is very important for the concerned individual to make efforts. There have been debates over the issue that an individual needs to analyse his own perceptions for improving the communication skills. Perceptions are regarded as one of the most essential barriers in the way of effective communication. The way employees perceive an important message being conveyed or the way they carry out the activities could largely affect the outcome. Discussed below is the importance analysing one’s perceptions for improving the communication skills. All of them contribute highly in all forms of communications which people make in a normal course of business.
The Argument: Is analysing your own perceptions important to improve your communication skills?
Many would tend to agree while others might just opt to disagree that it’s a matter of perceptions that can bring out a difference in the communication skills of an individual. However, analysing perception should be seen as one of the most important elements for improving the understanding levels and carrying out a work smoothly. Especially for a manager it is very important to have the right set of communication skills so as to perform a task with the best of his ability. Moreover if a manager does not perceive a task to be carried out in the manner it is required, it might turn out to be difficult for him to pass on the information to the subordinates and carry out the defined set of activities (Science.Uniserve 2012).
There are several things to analyse which often are termed as the barriers to an accurate perception. Some of them have been discussed below:
- Stereotyping: It is very important that the employee does not have any preconceptions about a person or things. It would be wise for individuals to analyse if they actually have predefined notions about a person or things happening around. In case a person already forms a bad or a good impression about them it may largely affect the way he communicates. So it is always recommended to erase all the preconceived notions and take decisions based on the ground realities and feasibility.
- Investment of time: Another important barrier where perceptions may come in the way of communication skills of an individual is the time they invest for a particular matter. It has been seen that managers who carry out monotonous tasks or have a rich experience often tend to ignore the details or circumstances while making assumptions to carry out a particular task. These often lead to misconceptions leading to overlooking important details. Analysing your perceptions regarding the time you invest before you make decisions could largely help you to enhance the communications skills you have. It would help in improving the confidence you have for the particular task you speak on and hence improve the way it gets presented.
- Distortion of Focus: While many people have a common problem of focussing on the negative aspects of a conversation it is very important to recognize the positives of things. In case you do so you would be in a better state to delegate, carry out the activity, and hence get the desired results. Focussing on the negatives could affect your confidence levels and hence be a barrier to the way you communicate with others on the concerned topic/task/project.
- Assumptions: One of the most unwanted things that people often do is drawing the same conclusions based on a situation or a set of information available. In order to improve your communication skills an individual should make sure to check the interpretations made by others and be explicit about what you perceive.
In all the cases mentioned above it is the perception of the individual that matters. Usually we may comment or try to suggest others about the things they might be doing wrong. However if we wish to improve our own communication skills it is essential that analyse our own perceptions in terms of the barriers discussed above. This could be done only by analysing the steps which we have taken in the past or the way we have conducted ourselves. The results would actually reveal the places where we had been wrong, the things which we could have done to make things better, and much more. Overall it would highly contribute in the way we communicate in future, while learning from the mistakes we did in the past (Personal.Stevans 2009).
It might not be easy for every person to analyse the perceptions they have and further take the benefits of it to improve their communication skills. Some of the possible strategies which one might look forward to are:
- Analysis of the way you perceive things: One can question the perceptions they have and think about the reasons that go behind for them being formed. A regular check in with others and be aware of the assumptions that you make could highly contribute to evaluate your position.
- Work towards improving your perception: The second step could be to increase the awareness of the possible barriers towards perceptions which includes the ones mentioned above. You need to check in with yourself on a regular basis, get honest, and constructive feedback from others around regarding their perceptions of you which would help in increasing the level of self-awareness.
- Focus on others:The last suggestion would be to develop the ability of focussing on others around. It would help in understanding them better and hence help you in the way you communicate.
With the three strategies mentioned above and considering the possible outcomes of the time devoted, highly valuable information could be deduced about your activities. Sharper your communication skills are steeper is your ascent to climb above the growth ladder in your career. So it is important that you constantly analyse your abilities, activities, and most importantly your perceptions so that you make sure the path you choose is best for your future. With such a hectic schedule it is more often than not that people would usually skip analysing these important aspects. They might go on committing the same mistakes again and again without being unaware if actually they are committing a mistake. So it is essential to take some time out of the busy schedules and devote it to analyse and enhance the abilities you have. It would surely make your work life much easier (Irish Racing 2009).
To conclude it is pretty evident that a person who analyses his or her perceptions is likely to improve the way they communicate. It not only contributes in the Verbal and Non Verbal means of communication but also in terms of written communication. A person would be more aware and highly conscious about the things he says besides being confident enough the moment he communicates. It hereby can be said that analysing oneself for the perceptions you may have is a highly essential element for the growth of an individual where the communication skills are an important element
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