Determine the three (3) key communication concepts you have gained from this class.
I have learned or had a refresher on several key communication concepts but the most important to me were: communicating across different cultures, non-verbal communications, and the role of the sender.
Communicating Across Different Cultures – Because we are now living in such a diverse society and since perception plays a huge role in our communications, we have to contend with interacting with people who speak different languages and use words differently and these words and/or actions could have a different meaning from ours. Therefore, to ensure that we are not communicating in a way that can be perceived as offensive we have to put forth an honest effort to learn about these different languages/cultures so we can ensure that we are interacting with everyone that our paths may cross in a respectful manner. My belief is that respect is a two way street and me or anyone else not knowing what we are doing or saying is not an excuse if we haven’t put forth an honest effort to learn.
Non-Verbal Communications – I believe that non-verbal communications are as important as verbal because believe it or not, a lot can said without saying it. For instance, when you send an e-mail and capitalize certain words in the e-mail, it can be perceived that you are screaming or emphasizing these particular words for a reason. Facial expressions or body movements can also send a negative message. Before it was brought to my attention years ago, I was definitely “guilty” of committing this “sin” mainly if I really didn’t care to interact with that particular individual or hear what they had to say. However, I guess between classes and maturity, I have become more conscientious about making these mistakes and now try to interact with a “poker” face.
Role of the Sender – Perception plays a major role in all types of communications. Therefore, as the sender, the onus is on me to ensure that my message is clear and precise and provides enough detail so the receiver gets the message and understands the request if an action(s) is required.
Explain the strengths and weaknesses of each.
Since the communications are similar and serve the same purpose just in a different form, I believe the strengths and weaknesses for each of them are one in the same which are: miscommunications because the message wasn’t clear, lack of understanding due to differences in communication styles, and perceptions because the intent from the receiver is different from how the receiver understood it.
Propose how you expect to use these concepts in your organization.
I plan to use these skills by being more sensitive, patient, and understanding when interacting with people from other cultures. Since most customer services for major companies are now being outsourced to many different countries, I have been in situations where I have become very frustrated and irritated by the customer service representative because I couldn’t understand them because of their heavy accent. I have to be mindful that this is the society that we are now living in and these individuals are trying to speak fluent English and they didn’t put themselves in these jobs.
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