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The Basics of Effective Interpersonal Communication

University Human Resources

Professional Development Program


Suppor t ing lead er ship, int er per sonal and pr ofessi onal ex cellenc e

Welcome!

This program is intended for anyone who would like an overview of the basic verbal and non-verbal communication skills needed for success in the workplace. The Professional Development Program also offers classroom sessions on this and other topics. Please visit our web site http://uhr.rutgers.edu/profdev to enroll or obtain more information.

Before you begin

Get the most from this program by answering these questions for yourself before you begin. You will evaluate your growth at the end.

What do I already know about interpersonal communication? What are my learning goals for this program? What are my supervisors expectations, if any, for my participation in this training? How do I think I will be able to apply my learning on the job?

Course Content

This online program will cover:


What communication is Why and how we communicate Barriers to communication Sharing ideas Getting information from others Giving constructive feedback Body language

Writing materials will be useful for jotting down your thoughts as your proceed through the course

Course Objectives

The objectives of this program are to:

provide a basic overview of verbal and non-verbal interpersonal communication processes identify personal obstacles to effective interpersonal communication define some strategies for improving individual and group communications

What is communication?

What do you think communication is? How would you define it?

Take a few moments to write down some of your thoughts

Communication

Communication is defined as the interchange of thoughts or opinions through shared symbols; e.g. language, words, phrases

Some synonyms of the word communication are: message, directive, word, contact, commerce, communion, intercommunication, intercourse; converse, exchange, interchange, conversing, discussing, talking; conversation, discussion, talk, advice, intelligence, news, tidings

Four facets of communication

Three are four facets in all types of communication:


Sender Receiver Information Behavior

Four facets of communication

In any communication:

The Sender is the person trying to communicate a message The Receiver is the person at whom the message is directed A message is sent to convey information Information is meant to change behavior

Shared symbols

Sometimes when we communicate we assume we are using shared symbols when we might not be

Think about the term asap, as soon as possible. What does it really mean?
Think about how the meaning might change in the situations on the next slide

Shared symbols

How might your meaning of asap change in these situations?

Someone from another department calls. He needs some detailed information asap; but you are already rather busy. A coworker comes to you for help with an assignment. She needs you asap; but you have another job to finish before lunch. Your immediate supervisor, whom you like to please, asks you to type a memo for her asap; but you already have a stack of other jobs to finish.

Shared symbols

Someone from another department calls. He needs some detailed information asap; but you are already rather busy.

In this situation, you might interpret asap as when I have finished all of my own work and have a chance to get to it. It might be tomorrow or the next day.

Shared symbols

A coworker comes to you for help with an assignment. She needs you asap; but you have another job to finish before lunch.

In this situation, you might interpret asap as after I have finished my own work, I will help out after lunch.

Shared symbols

Your immediate supervisor, whom you like to please, asks you to type a memo for her asap; but you already have a stack of other jobs to finish.

In this situation, you might interpret asap as Ill do this now and finish my other work afterwards.

Shared symbols

In the previous examples, weve seen the meaning of asap change from in a few days to immediately.

Many other words and phrases are also vague and have different meanings for different people.
Shared symbols are not always completely shared. The message intended is not always the message received.

Missed communication

As the Manager Requested it.

As Purchasing ordered it.

As Marketing wrote it up.

As the Art Dept. designed it.

As the Supervisor implemented it.

What the Employee really wanted!

Why do we communicate?

What do you think?

Take a few moments to write down some of your thoughts

Why we communicate

We communicate to:

Share our ideas and opinions Provide feedback to others Get information from others Gain power and influence Develop social relationships Maintain self-expression and our culture and other ideas you may have thought of

How do we communicate?

Think of the many ways in which you communicate

Take a few moments to write down some of your thoughts

How we communicate

We communicate and build interpersonal relationships through:


Speech Writing Listening Non-verbal language Music, art, and crafts

Choosing your medium

Depending upon the situation, one method of communication may be better than another.

In person: one-to-one In person: meetings, small groups In person: presentations, large groups Letter Memo Note Email Voice mail

Choosing your medium

To determine the best medium for your message determine:


What you as the sender need to achieve What the receiver needs to know. What the receiver wants to know How detailed, important, and or personal the information in the message is Which behavior you want to influence and how

Choosing your medium

How would you communicate


an organizational change in your unit the introduction of a new employee a change in someones job duties a reprimand notice of a meeting

Take a few moments to write down some of your thoughts

Choosing your medium

The best way to communicate

an organizational change in your unit by

memo and small group meetings

the introduction of a new employee by

group and one-on-one meetings

a change in someones job duties by

memo and one-on-one meeting a reprimand in a one-on-one private meeting notice of a meeting by memo and email

Halangan-halangan Komunikasi

Apakah halangan-halangan komunikasi yang boleh menjejaskan pekerjaan seharian?

Ambil sedikit masa,fikir dan buat sedikit catatan

Halangan-halangan Komunikasi

Beberapa halangan komunikasi interpersonal ialah:

Proses yang kurang jelas: Rantaian arahan:

Penyampai dan penerima tidak berkongsi bahasa yang sama, dialek, slang, jargon, istilah dan simbol. Maklumat melalui terlalu banyak lapisan untuk sampai kepada penerima.

Saiz organisasi terlalu besar, jarak geografi: Batasan personal:

Saiz penerima yang besar memerlukan kaedah penyampaian maklumat yang baik. Masalah fizikal dan mental, dan perbezaan taraf pemikiran dan pendidikan penerima perlu kepada kesefahaman.

Halangan-halangan Komunikasi

Faktor tambahan kepada halangan komunikasi interpersonal: Naluri manusia: Ego manusia, prejudis dan masalah
manusia biasa.

Rasa konflik, matlamat, pandangan: Rasa hebat:


Dan lain-lain

Sekiranya seseorang itu tidak bersetuju atau tiada kaitan dengan sesuatu isu, mereka tidak akan berkongsi maklumat. Seseorang yang merasakan pengetahuannya lebih hebat akan menghalang maklumat baru yang diterimanya.

Berkongsi idea

Mengapa dan bila kita harus berkongsi idea?

Ambil sedikit masa,fikir dan buat sedikit catatan

Kongsi idea anda untuk

Menyatakan pendapat dan kedudukan sebenar Memberi arahan atau petunjuk Mengumumkan sebarang perubahan Membuat pembentangan sesuatu Mengambil bahagian dalam mesyuarat Memberi imformasi dalam kecemasan Berkomunikasi untuk menjelaskan misi, visi dan kepentingan sesebuah organisasi Dan idea-idea lain yang berkaitan

Halangan kepada perkongsian idea

Apa yang menjadikan perkongsian idea sukar?

Ambil sedikit masa,fikir dan buat sedikit catatan

Halangan kepada perkongsian idea


Anda seorang yang pemalu Berasa anda ditolak Rasa tertekan Pemikiran yang bercelaru Kemungkinan yang menjadikan anda defensif Kecacatan fizikal (kecacatan penglihatan, pendengaran,
pertuturan)

Berurusan dengan orang-orang yang agresif Dan lain-lain yang menjadi kesukaran anda

Bercakap bagi pihak diri anda

Untuk memastikan mesej anda jelas, bercakaplah bagi pihak diri anda, bukan untuk orang lain:

Bercakap bagi pihak diri anda seperti berikut:


Saya Saya rasa, Saya merasakan, Saya mahu tahu


Mereka, setengah orang, semua orang, mereka hendak Kami, anda, John, Mary menyatakan

Bercakap bukan bagi pihak:

Bercakap bukan bagi pihak orang lain:

Kongsi idea anda Satu model


State the main point of your message Highlight other important points Assure the receivers understanding React to how the receiver responds Emphasize/summarize your main ideas

SHARE an example
State the main point of your message Id like to talk to you about the new employee welcome program. Highlight other important points We need to discuss the new schedule, locations, and presenters. Assure the receivers understanding Do you need me to further clarify how we are making invitations? React to how the receiver responds I understand your concern about parking. Emphasize/summarize your main ideas To wrap-up, Ill develop the schedule and make the room reservations, if you can line up the guest speakers.

Getting good information

Why is it necessary to get good information from others?

Take a few moments to write down some of your thoughts

Get good information to


Find out facts and details Get directions or instructions Try to understand anothers point of view Help someone solve a problem Resolve a team conflict Solve work problems and other ideas you may have thought of

Obstacles to getting good information

What can make getting good information difficult?

Take a few moments to write down some of your thoughts

Obstacles to getting good information


Lack of trust Assuming you already know it all Jumping to conclusions Not valuing diverse opinions Weak reading skills Weak listening skills Weak questioning skills and other ideas you may have thought of

The power of listening


The philosopher Epictetus stressed the power of listening in this quote:

Nature gave us one tongue and two ears so we could hear twice as much as we speak.

Listen actively

Prepare to listen by focusing on the speaker Control and eliminate distractions so that you can focus on the message. Dont do anything else (writing, reading, email) but listen Establish appropriate eye contact to show interest See listening as an opportunity to get information, share anothers views, and broaden your own knowledge

Listen actively

Create a need to listen by thinking about what you can learn from the speaker Set aside the time to listen so that you wont feel rushed or become distracted by other responsibilities Dont prejudge the message based on who is delivering it. Focus instead on the content of the message. Monitor the way you listen by asking yourself questions such as Did I really pay attention or was I thinking about what I was going to say next? Was there information I missed because I allowed myself to become distracted?

Thats a good question!

Close end questions limit the answer to yes or no Open end questions allow the responder total freedom in answering Direct questions ask for specific information; limit answers to brief fact statements Probing questions follow up other questions to solicit additional information Hypothetical questions present a theoretical situation to which receiver responds
See examples of each on the next slide

Good question - examples


Close end question
Did you attend the staff meeting this morning?

Open end question


What was discussed at the staff meeting this morning?

Direct question
Which topics were listed on the meeting agenda?

Probing question
Can you tell me more about the first agenda topic?.

Hypothetical question
What would you have done, if you had not had the chance to present your idea at the meeting?

FOCUS on information a model

Focus the discussion on the specific information you need Open-end question to expand the discussion Close-end question to get specifics Use active listening skills to understand what you are hearing Summarize and close the discussion

FOCUS on information an example


Focus the discussion on the specific information you need I need to ask you about the computer meeting you attended yesterday. Open-end question to expand the discussion What kinds of decisions were made regarding expansion of our departmental system? Close-end question to get specifics Did the committee decide to buy Dell computers? Use active listening skills to understand what you are hearing What I think I heard you say was that the decision was made? Summarize and close the discussion So to wrap up, the system will expand and we will be using Dells. Thanks for keeping me up to date.

Giving feedback

Why is it necessary to give constructive feedback to others?

Take a few moments to write down some of your thoughts

Give feedback when


Someone asks for your opinion Work errors occur frequently A coworkers habits disturb you A coworkers behavior has negative consequences There are unresolved problems and other ideas you may have thought of
solving problems instead of placing blame, and strengthening relationships instead of being right

Constructive feedback focuses on facts not people,

Obstacles to giving constructive feedback

What makes it hard to give constructive feedback?

Take a few moments to write down some of your thoughts

Obstacles to giving constructive feedback

Separating the person from the problem Others becoming defensive or angry Fear of negative consequences (especially if the other person is a supervisor) Dealing with potential conflict (especially if the other person is aggressive) Avoiding hurt feelings Preserving relationships Not having all the facts and jumping to conclusions Choosing the right time so that the other person is most receptive and other ideas you may have thought of

STATE feedback a model

State the constructive purpose of your feedback Tell specifically what you have observed Address and describe your reactions Tender specific suggestions for improvement Express your support and respect for the person

STATE feedback an example


State the constructive purpose of your feedback Id like to give you some feedback about your training style so that your evaluations will be more positive and you will enjoy it more. Tell specifically what you have observed I notice that you rely heavily on your notes. Address and describe your reactions I feel as though you are unsure of yourself when you read. Tender specific suggestions for improvement I can help you develop a PowerPoint presentation so that you can use the screens as a cue instead of being tied to your notes. Express your support for the person You know a lot about the subject. With practice you can become a good trainer.

Body language

Nonverbal communication, known as body language sends strong positive and negative signals. This is how much it influences any message:
Words Tone of voice Non-verbal cues Message 8% 34% 58% 100%

Body language includes


Face Figure Focus Territory Tone Time

Each of these is described in the following slides

Body language - face

Face includes:

Your expressions Your smile or lack thereof Tilt of the head; e.g., if your head is tilted to one side, it usually indicates you are interested in what someone is saying

What message are you sending if someone is presenting a new idea and you are frowning?

Body language - figure

Figure includes:

Your posture Your demeanor and gestures Your clothes and accessories such as jewelry

What message are you sending if you are dressed casually at an important meeting?

Body language - focus

Focus is your eye contact with others


The perception of eye contact differs by culture. For most Americans

Staring makes other people uncomfortable Lack of eye contact can make you appear weak or not trustworthy Glasses may interfere or enhance eye contact

What message are you sending if you are looking at other things and people in a room when someone is speaking to you?

Body language - territory

Territory focuses on how you use space. It is also called proxemics.


The perception of territory differs by culture. Most Americans are comfortable with an individual space that is about an arms length in diameter
What message are you sending if you keep moving closer to a person who is backing away from you?

Body language - tone

Tone is a factor of your voice


Pitch is the highness or lowness of voice Volume is how loud your voice is Emphasis is your inflection

What message are you sending if during a disagreement you start speaking very loudly?

Body language - time

Time focuses on how you use time. It is also called chronemics.


Pace is how quickly you speak Response is how quickly you move Punctuality is your timeliness

What message are you sending if you are consistently late for meetings?

Ideas to walk away with


People are always communicating The meaning intended by the sender is never exactly the message gotten by the receiver We can help to overcome barriers to communication by being aware of them Verbal and non-verbal communication is important in sending our messages

Test yourself
1. Communication is defined as the interchange of thoughts or opinions through shared symbols.
True___ False___

2. The four facets of interpersonal communication are sender, receiver, information, and behavior.
True___ False___

3. Unclear process; chain of command; large size of an organization or geographic distance; personal limitations; human nature; conflicting feelings, goals, opinions; and power are examples of barriers to communication.
True___ False___

Test yourself
4. Describe the steps of the SHARE model for giving good information share, highlight, assure, react, emphasize: 5. Describe the steps of the FOCUS model for getting good information focus, open end, close end, use, summarize: 6. Describe the steps of the STATE model for giving constructive feedback state, tell, address, tender, express: 7. Describe the the six aspects of non-verbal communication (body language):

Test yourself - answers


1. Communication is defined as the interchange of thoughts or opinions through shared symbols.
True

2. The four facets of interpersonal communication are sender, receiver, information, and behavior.
True

3. Unclear process; chain of command; large size of an organization or geographic distance; personal limitations; human nature; conflicting feelings, goals, opinions; power are examples of barriers to communication.
True

Test yourself - answers


4. The steps of the SHARE model for giving good information are:

State the main point of your message Highlight other important points Assure the receivers understanding React to how the receiver responds Emphasize/summarize your main ideas

5. The steps of the FOCUS model for getting good information are:

Focus the discussion on the specific information you need Open-end question to expand the discussion Close-end question to get specifics Use active listening skills to understand what you are hearing Summarize and close the discussion

Test yourself - answers


6. The steps of the STATE model for constructive feedback are: State the constructive purpose of your feedback Tell specifically what you have observed Address and describe your reactions Tender specific suggestions for improvement Express your support for the person

7. The the six aspects of non-verbal communication (body language):


Face expressions, smile, tilt of head Figure posture, demeanor, gestures, dress Focus eye contact Territory use of space Tone voice pitch, volume, emphasis Time the use time

Apply what youve learned

When you started this program we asked you to consider some questions. Lets wrap up:

What new things did you learn about interpersonal communication? Did you meet your learning goals for this program? Did you meet your supervisors expectations, if any, for participation in this training? How will you be able to apply your learning on the job?

Whats next?

We hope you have enjoyed this program as an overview of the basic verbal and non-verbal communication skills needed in the workplace. The Professional Development Program offers classroom sessions on this and other topics which include numerous individual and group exercises to enhance your learning.

Please visit our web site http://uhr.rutgers.edu/profdev to enroll or obtain more information.

The Basics of Effective Interpersonal Communication

University Human Resources

Professional Development Program


Suppor t ing lead er ship, int er per sonal and pr ofessi onal ex cellenc e