Communication meets several needs: Physical - POW's die much sooner if they can't communicate. A lack of social relationships jeopardizes physical well-being to the same extent as smoking and high blood pressure. Identity - Communication is the only way we learn who we are. We decide who we are based on how others react to us. Practical - Communication allows us to get others to do what we want. It is also the top factor in helping college graduates find jobs.
People usually plan their words carefully before they approach their supervisors, but we all carelessly make comments that would have gone better unsaid. Everyone can see our sour expressions even if we say &quot;Nothing's wrong.&quot; Speaking or silent, you provide information to others about your thoughts and feelings. No amount of explanation can erase the impression you have created. Despite the judge's warnings, it's impossible for the jury to &quot;un-receive&quot; a message. The same words and behavior are different each time they are spoken or performed because communication is an ongoing process. Things that work today may not work tomorrow.
Saying something is not the same as communicating it. There is no guarantee that the receiver will interpret the message as you intend. Too much talking is often unproductive. Sometimes we make a bad situation worse by going too far. It's better to be silent. When you explain to the parents why the child was suspended, does clear communication solve the problem? You're not born with it. You can develop communication skills.
Suppose someone you know repeatedly tells jokes that you find offensive. You could decide to say nothing, figuring the risk is too great ask somebody else to tell him he's offensive hint at your discomfort and hope he notices joke about your friend's insensitivity, hoping humor will soften the blow when you criticize ask him to stop telling the offensive stories demand that he stop
Do exercise on stereotyping. Have group members respond to others according to instructions.
Chevrolet was baffled when its Nova model did not sell well in Latin American countries. Officials finally realized that in Spanish &quot;no va&quot; means &quot;does not go.&quot; McDonalds was embarrassed to learn that in French-Canadian slang, big macs are large breasts. The American okay sign is an obscene gesture in many cultures. Arabs consistently breathe on people when they talk; distance shows shame. Westerners are uncomfortable with silence, but Asian cultures believe remaining quiet is the proper state when there is nothing to be said. Eye Contact - whites look away from a partner while speaking, but look at him while listening. Blacks do the opposite, looking at their companion more when talking and less when listening. This causes problems because we tend to measure paying attention by eye contact. A Southerner whose talkative, high-touch style seems normal at home is viewed as pushy and arrogant in the North.
In a study, a random sampling of men were asked to rank themselves on their ability to get along with others. Defying mathematics, they all put themselves in the top half of the population. 60% rated themselves in the top 10% and 25% believed they were in the top 1%. 60% said they were in the top quarter in athletic abilities. You might blame a bad working situation on the boss instead of looking for other factors beyond her control (economy, new management, new regulations). You're bothered by your principal's mispronunciation of a frequently used word. If you were in his place, you'd want someone to bring it to your attention. You tell him, but he doesn't appreciate it.
It's a tool to help you understand others accurately instead of assuming that your first interpretation is correct.
Language changes according to the way it is used. It consists of symbols which have meaning only because we all agree on what they mean. Phonological - sound The words &quot;champagne, double, occasion&quot; all have the same meaning in French and in English, but they don't sound the same. &quot;magic&quot; - Greek &quot;tornado&quot; - Spanish &quot;umbrella&quot; - Italian &quot;golf&quot; - Dutch Syntactic - the way symbols are put together. For example, every English word needs a vowel. This is not true in other languages. English sentences generally have Subject/verb pattern. &quot;Have you the cookies brought?&quot; would be acceptable in German, but not English. Semantic - what the symbols mean - so we know who we will encounter when we enter that door marked &quot;Women&quot; or &quot;Men.&quot; Semantic rules give us literal definitions, denotations. Pragmatic rules govern how we interpret the message, especially important when the language has so many idiomatic expressions. What do we mean by &quot;See you later&quot;? &quot;Dress up&quot;? &quot;That's cool&quot;? People for whom English is not the first language have most difficulty understanding idiomatic expressions. Mistakes, while often funny, are sometimes deadly. We still argue about the wisdom of using the atomic bomb on Japan in 1945. In retrospect, we know that the bomb did not cause Japan to surrender; they had already asked for peace. Why didn't they accept the terms of the Potsdam Declaration in summer of 1945 instead of waiting until after the bombs had been dropped in August? Probably because of a mistake involving the use of only one word. By spring of 1945, Japan was desperate: industry was shut down, millions were homeless, food was running out. The government had decided to surrender, to accept the terms offered, and negotiations were underway. Not wanting to hinder negotiations, in a press conference on July 28, the Premier said the government was holding to a policy of &quot;mokusatsu&quot; - meaning that there was no comment now, but something significant was pending. However, the word &quot;mokusatsu&quot; can also mean &quot;to ignore&quot; and this is the meaning that was translated into English. Tokyo radio flashed it to America and the bomb was dropped on August 6 because of the belief that Japan had refused to accept the agreement.
Identity - different names have different connotations. Some names are attractive (Michael, John, Wendy) while others are less likable (Percival, Gertrude, Alfreda). We change our names as we grow older (Johnny becomes John) and want to be taken seriously. Women who are called Betsy or Susie are treated with less respect than they deserve. Consider &quot;Sandy&quot; O'Connor or &quot;Jan&quot; Reno. Studies show that women who took their husband's name placed most importance on relationships, not self-interest. Women who choose &quot;Ms.&quot; are more achievement oriented than others. Affiliation - We adapt our speech to match those with whom we want to identify or attract. Notice principals who use slang and poor grammar in an attempt to have students identify with them. We choose vocabulary, for example, to help us fit in. We also use language to distinguish ourselves from those we don't wish to identify with. We use formal language and professional jargon when we want to establish credibility with a parent, for example. Clues to identification: &quot;These&quot; (those) people need our help. &quot;It's not bad&quot; vs. &quot;It's good.&quot; &quot;Jack and Jill&quot; (Jill and Jack) are my friends. Power - Language allows us to influence others. &quot;Excuse me, sir. I hate to say this, but I ...uh...I guess I won't be able to turn in the assignment on time. I had a personal emergency and...well...it was just impossible to finish it by today. I'll have it on your desk on Monday, Okay?&quot; OR &quot;I won't be able to turn in the assignment on time. I had a personal emergency and it was impossible to finish it by today. I'll have it on your desk Monday.&quot; Examples of powerless language: I'm kinda disappointed I guess I'd like to Well, we could try this idea I wish you would - er - try to be on time Excuse me, sir It's about time to change, isn't it? A combination of powerful and polite speech is most effective: &quot;Would you mind retyping this letter?&quot; will probably work better than &quot;Retype this&quot; even though boss and secretary know it's not just a request. First Names - In the South, we have a tendency to call each other by firs names very quickly. The person who is referred to by his first name has less power than the one who is NOT. For example, I called my principal &quot;Mr. Helms&quot; but he called me &quot;Gayle.&quot;
Language that is too abstract is often misleading.
&quot;I&quot; language clearly identifies the speaker as the source of a message. People who use &quot;it&quot; statements avoid responsibility for ownership of a message in an unconscious attempt to avoid taking a position.
These statements are a strategy for wrapping the speaker's real (but unpleasant) message between more pleasant ideas, but the goal becomes confused. If the meaning has to be clear, don't use &quot;but&quot; statements.
&quot;You&quot; language implies that the speaker is qualified to judge the target - not an idea that most listeners are willing to accept, even when the evaluation is correct. The same concept applies, even when &quot;you&quot; isn't used: &quot;That was a stupid joke&quot; - &quot;your jokes are stupid&quot;
Benefits of &quot;I&quot; language: Others are more likely to accept your message when you're not judgmental. &quot;I&quot; statements are just as honest as &quot;you&quot; statements, but they are kinder. &quot;I&quot; statements deliver more information than &quot;you&quot; messages. The other person doesn't have to guess what's bothering you. &quot;I get too angry to use 'I' language.&quot; Then it's smarter to keep quiet until you've thought about the consequences of what you might say than to blurt out something you'll regret later. &quot;That's not the way I talk.&quot; It's only awkward until you become more comfortable using it.
&quot;We&quot; statements imply that the issue is the concern and responsibility of both people.
Men describe same-sex conversations as something they like; women describe them as something they need. Women empathize; men advise. Men interrupt to assert their own experiences or point of view; women interrupt to offer support. Men swear more than women; women ask more questions than do men. Men interrupt women more often than women interrupt men. In larger groups, men talk more; in smaller settings, women talk more. Females who speak tentatively are actually more influential with men than those who use more powerful speech.
We stammer, blush, sweat without meaning to do so.
&quot;Okay&quot; gesture is negative in other cultures. Americans conduct business at a distance of about four feet. People from the Middle East stand much closer. Direct eye contact is not appropriate for Asians, indians, Pakistanis, and northern Europeans.
Repeating - nodding your head when you say &quot;yes,&quot; pointing when you give directions Substituting - shrugging your shoulders to mean &quot;I don't know&quot; Complementing - scratching your head when you're thinking, hanging your head when you're embarrassed Accenting - pointing when you criticize Regulating - pausing when you want somebody else to speak Contradicting - trying not to appear nervous during a job interview. Audiences put more emphasis on nonverbal cues than on words to decide whether speakers are honest.
Body orientation - the degree to which we face toward or away from someone. Posture - watch how your audience sits to see whether they are listening. Gestures are often very clear. Be aware of facial expressions – even if you keep your mouth shut.
Do listening exercises, depending on time left: Following Directions Listening for Details Thinking while Listening Two Heads Are Better than One
Hearing - physiological, influenced by background noise Attending - the process of filtering out some messages and focusing on others Understanding - making sense of a message Responding - giving observable feedback to the speaker Remembering - ability to recall information. Research suggests that people remember only about half of what they hear immediately after hearing it. Within 8 hours, the 50% remembered drops to about 35%.
Pseudolistening - an imitation of the real thing Stage-hogging - trying to turn the conversation to themselves instead of showing interest in the speaker. For example, &quot;I had a terrible weekend..&quot; &quot;You think your weekend was bad - you should have been where I was.&quot; Interruptions are stage-hogging. Selective listening - responding only to the parts that interest them Insulated listening - failing to hear or acknowledge anything they don't want to know Defensive listening - taking innocent comments as personal attacks Ambushing - listening carefully to collect information they'll use to attack what you say Insensitive listening - not looking beyond the literal words to understand the meaning of a message
Given the onslaught of messages, our attention wanders. Personal concerns are of more immediate importance to us than the messages others are sending. We're capable of understanding speech at rates up to 600 words per minute, but the average person speaks between 100 and 150 words per minute. Listening effectively increases heart rate, respiration, and body temperature, just like physical exercise does. Distractions and hearing problems are abundant. We assume that we already know what a speaker is going to say or that his thoughts are too complex or too simple. We often have more to gain by speaking than by listening. Listening is a skill that we are not taught.
Paraphrasing: restating in your own words the message you think the speaker has sent. Exercise: Before discussing paraphrasing, demonstrate with a principal and an irate parent. I'll be the parent. My daughter has received a grade I don't think she deserves. I can't be reasoned with. Then use paraphrasing to moderate the discussion.
What do you want your audience to do as a result of your presentation? What do they already know about your subject? Are they interested? Are they hostile? Do you know enough about your topic? Do you have too many major points? How is the meeting or presentation to be organized? Who else is speaking?
The purpose of the media is to sell newspapers or air time. The reporter is not concerned with making you look good or supporting the goals of education in general. They care about what people read and what they watch. Do not answer questions if you don’t have the information at hand. The deadlines of the press should be of no concern to you. You, as an employee of the school system, are not simply making statements. You are delivering public records. Do not “guess” or invent information.
Use transitions to avoid answering leading questions like “ Why do you think there is a drug problem at your school?” “ Are you surprised that your teacher attacked that student?” “ What can you tell us about you’re the illegal players on your team?” Close the interview with something like, “Our major concern is to give you accurate information in a timely manner. If we accumulate more facts, we will distribute them as reasonably soon as we can.”