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An incorrect medium or an inappropriate medium chosen to communicate a message will act as a barrier to communication. In a workshop, a lengthy written instruction memo cannot be used, while information about a new product on the market can only be obtained through an effective and attractive advertisement.

Properly complementing one communication medium with another can help overcome the communication barrier caused by the chosen medium. An oral reminder in person or over the phone followed by a written letter can easily produce the desired response or expected reaction.

Also, through the wrong choice of media, for example, two people are interacting and suddenly one starts using jargon, this will create a barrier for the receiver of the message because they may not know the meaning of those words. . The same goes for texting on the phone or sending an email, people always use abbreviations and this always leads to a lack of communication.

Most of us want to communicate effectively, but we don’t appreciate the communication barriers we face. Due to these barriers, there is ample opportunity for something to go wrong in any communication. Competent managers develop an awareness of barriers and learn to cope with them.

How effectively do you happen as a manager, do you communicate with your superiors, subordinates and colleagues? Do you recognize the barriers to effective communication? Have you learned to deal with them? In the discussion that follows, the main barriers to communicating effectively in today’s work environment are identified and considered proven techniques to address them.

The main barriers to effective communication are: noise, poor feedback, inappropriate media selection, an incorrect mental attitude, insufficient attention or inattention to job selection, delay in message transmission, physical separation of sender and receiver , and lack of empathy or a good relationship between sender and receiver.


1. AGE: Many companies decide channel division by looking at customer demographics, particularly age. Lots of research in terms of social media usage and real-time messaging like text and web chat. And there is a belief in many circles that the older generation of Baby Boomers have a stereotypical preference for talking on the phone compared to newer digital channels. While those in the middle, Gen X, are happy with the phone and email, but perhaps not yet totally comfortable with real-time messaging. This is a definite factor in the choice, but not the only one.

2. CONTEXT: In an emergency where we need a quick response, we pick up the phone, regardless of our demographic. However, if you are later told that you will be on hold for 15 minutes and the chat is available, you can hang up and switch to this channel. Conversely, for less time-critical interactions, sending an email provides security, therefore companies must analyze why consumers are communicating with them, in particular how urgent their inquiry is, by balancing resources between channels.

3. PERSONALITY: Another perspective is to examine how customer personality types can drive their preferences for customer service channels. Outgoing people, with confident and outgoing personalities, will be more than happy to talk on the phone and may even enjoy a chat and express their point of view to a contact center agent. In contrast, those with a reserved and introverted personality may prefer non-verbal / real-time channels, such as email contact for customer service. This means that they do not need to speak to anyone and can avoid the need to think quickly when communicating with an agent on the phone. Email gives them plenty of time to consider and convey what they want to say. And they can avoid being embarrassed with difficult questions while on the phone or in real-time dialogue via text message or web chat.

4. TYPE OF BUSINESS: Obviously, it can be difficult to analyze your customer base by personality without asking intrusive questions. However, if you look at the type of business it is, you can get an idea of ​​the type of customers it will attract. A youth fashion retailer will obviously appeal to a different demographic than a 50+ vacation provider. Understand your customers and use this information to help you plan your multichannel strategy. Organize focus groups and do research to help form this picture.


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