Noise: Another conversation (within hearing distance), loud music,
traffic noise (in the background), crows cawing, plane overhead can drown message.
Environmental stress: High temperature plus humidity, poor
ventilation, vibrations felt, strong glare can contribute to distractions
(in sending and receiving messages).
Subjective stress: Sleeplessness, ill health, effects of drugs, mood
variations give rise to stress, leading to difficulty in listening and
Ignorance of medium: The various media for communication are
oral, written, audio, visual, audio-visual. Use of a medium, which the
communicator is not familiar with could turn the medium itself into
barrier (e.g. maps, charts used to instruct workers who have not
been taught to read maps will alienate workers immediately).
Self Image: Involved in the ‘frame of reference’ is the self-image or
self- concept of a person. Owing to this self-image people establish
their point of view, and interpret messages in accordance with their
self concepts. They interpret 'reality' in the light of these preconceived notions. As a part of this system, people tend to listen
and interpret favourably towards those messages, which give a
further their self-image and reject those messages, which threaten
Resistance to change: The risk of being changed is one of the
most frightening prospects many of us can face. It is a human
tendency to resist change and new ideas.
Defensiveness and fear: This is strongly allied to the barrier raised
by a ‘resistance to change’. One of man’s most compelling needs is
to justify himself.
LINGUISTIC AND CULTURAL
• Language is an expression of thoughts/expression of
people in terms of cultural environment. When same
language is used in different cultures, it takes another
colour.Language can be appropriated to suit varied
situations e.g. financial terms, medical terms,
psychological terms etc. Language facilitates
understanding, but it can also prove to be a barrier to
communication. A language, whether verbal or nonverbal, is ambiguous in nature. Words are mere
symbols. Symbols are comprehended differently by
participants in communication. Cultural differences have
an impact on language and meanings.
• Mechanical barriers are those raised by channels
employed for interpersonal or mass communication.
Channels become barriers when the message is
impeded by disturbances. In such a case, it a) increases
the difficulty in reception or b)prevents some elements of
the message reaching its destination or both. Absence of
communication facilities can also be mechanical barrier.
Technically such barriers are clubbed as 'channel noise'.
These include any disturbance, which interferes with the
fidelity of physical transmission of a message. Some
examples of mechanical barriers are static on radio,
smeared ink on newspaper, a rolling screen on TV, a
barely readable point size or a film projector, video/DVD
that does not function properly.
Barriers. The 7C’s
The message to be communicated
should be as brief and concise as
possible. Only simple and brief statements
should be made.
It is both time-saving and cost saving
Underlines &highlights main points
Avoids unnecessary & needless words
Short and brief
• Concrete communication implies being
particular and clear rather than fuzzy and
• It is supported with specific facts and
• It makes use of words that are clear
• Concrete messages are not
Conveys all facts required by the audience
Develops & enhances reputation of an
Provides additional information
Helps in decision making
Persuades the audience
• Correct communication is error free
• Message is exact, correct and well-timed
• Correct communication boosts up
confidence of the receiver
• Courtesy in message implies the message
should show respect for the receiver
• Sender of the message should be
• Credibility depends on the trust factor
between the sender and receiver
• Sender should exude confidence that the
receiver will receive the intended message
• Receiver should maintain constant
interaction with the sender and display
trust in the sender's credibility
• Receiver should accept the sender's
messages as the truth.
• Clarity implies emphasizing on a specific
message or goal at a time rather than
trying to achieve too much at once
• It makes understanding easier
• It enhances the meaning of the message