The first Scientific study of nonverbal communication
was CHARLES DARWIN's book The Expression of the
Emotions in Man and Animals.
He argued that all mammals reliably show emotions in
Seventy years later SILVAN TOMKINS (1911–1991) began
his classic studies on human emotions in Affects Imagery
Consciousness volumes 1-4
Transmission of messages by a medium other
than speech or writing.
Research suggests that only 7 percent effect is
produced by the spoken word, 38 percent by the
tone, inflexion, and other
elements of voice, and
55 percent by body language,
movements, eye contact, etc.
Non-verbal communication is
usually understood as the process of
communication through sending &
receiving wordless messages.
Ways of talking
Transfer of meaning without words.
Less than 1/3 of the meaning is
transferred through words.
Non-verbal & verbal behavior are some
way about each other.
Non-verbal communication is
Examples: Ring of
Sings printed on cartoon,
Stripes at a Zebra crossing.
What does this symbol mean to you?
In the United States it is a
symbol for good job.
In Germany the number
In Japan the number five.
In Malaysia the thumb is
used to point rather than a
Categories of signs
Nonverbal communication represents two-thirds of
Nonverbal communication can portray a message
both verbally and with the correct body signals.
Body signals comprise PHYSICAL
FEATURES, CONSCIOUS and UNCONSCIOUS
GESTURE and signals, and the mediation of personal
The wrong message can be established if the body
language conveyed does not match a verbal message.
communication strengthens a first
IMPRESSION in common situations like attracting a
partner or in a business interview: impressions are on
average formed within the first four seconds of contact.
encounters or interactions with another person
strongly affect a person's perception.
When the other person or group is absorbing the
message they are focused on the entire
ENVIRONMENT around them, meaning the other
person uses all five senses in the INTERACTION :
83% sight, 11% hearing, 3% smell, 2% touch and 1%
Why Is Nonverbal Communication Important?
The usage of Nonverbal
Communication can clarify even the
toughest messages to understand.
When speaking with a person, it
makes a difference to see them and
understand the way that they are feeling
based not only through their words, but
also through their
gestures, expressions, and all
characteristics that fit into the
Nonverbal Communication category.
In addition, nonverbal cues can sometimes be
more meaningful than words themselves.
However, when put together, a message is then
Nonverbal Communication completes
communication as a whole
Accenting (Moderating): Nonverbal cues can amplify or accentuate
A parent tells a child “It’s bedtime.” The child lays on the floor, kicking and
screaming, while saying “No, no, no, no, no.”
Complement: Nonverbal cues may complement or reinforce words.
“While scolding a child a parent points a finger at him or her.”
Contradicting (Conflicting): Nonverbal cues can signal the
opposite of what words mean.
“Your mouth is saying no, but your body is saying yes.”
Regulation: Making or breaking eye contact to signal turn taking
“Gus puts both elbows on the table and inhales, indicating he is about to
Repetition: Nonverbal cues can reiterate verbal
“You ask a stranger in a foreign country what time it is. The
stranger doesn’t understand, so you tap the top of your wrist
with your finger.”
Substituting: Nonverbal cues may serve as
substitutes or replacements for words.
“A basketball player makes a choke sign after a player on the
other team misses a crucial free throw.”
Occur in a text
Governed by rules
Categories of body movement
Thumps up Means OK
Tilt head eyes closed means Sleeping
Hand to mouth means Eating
V with fingers means Peace
Illustrators- Directly tied to speech
Affect displays- Indicates the intensity
of emotions we feel.
Regulators- Body movements that help
to control the flow of communication.
Adaptors- Movements or behavior that
involve personal expressions.
Physical characteristics often affect
others react to the conversation.
Skin color, tone
How - not what you say.
Vocal & lip control
Intimate – Ranges from actual touching
to a distance of about 18 inches.
Personal - 18-30 inches.
Social – 4-12 feet.
Public - 12-15 feet.
Eye contact – Indicates interest,
attention or involvement between two
Smell – It is a powerful communicator.
Taste – It is correlated to sense of smell
& is highly subjective.
Act of touch
Positive & negative influence.
Ungoverned by rules.
Use of time & how we view its role in
our personal & professional lives play
a role in our communication.
Provide thinking time
Effects of Non-verbal communication
Non-verbal cues are difficult to read.
Non-verbal cues are difficult to
Some non-verbal cues are important
We fail to read some cues.
We are not much skilled.
A knowledge of the several factors
involved with Non-verbal
communication, and an awareness of
its power will improve our ability to
communicate with others……