Non Verbal Communication Essay examples

Submitted By sgthodges
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Demonstrative Communication: The Ups and Downs of Nonverbal Communication
Joshua Hodges
Business Communications and Critical Thinking/BCOM 275
November 13, 2012
Martin McDuffie

Nonverbal Communication; What You Say When You Say Nothing For a business major, it is as important to learn about nonverbal communication is as to learn about management or accounting. While more and more business is being conducted by computers, on websites and through email, face to face communication is still an important way to make deals, work with employees and work with supervisors. Nonverbal communication starts with how facial expressions can affect both what message is being transmitted as well as how that message is received. Another area to keep in mind when speaking is on how the tone and volume of the voice plays a part in the message. The final area to consider is that the world of business is a global one, so it is important to keep in mind how nonverbal communication changes from culture to culture. Facial expressions contribute greatly to the overall message that is being communicated when people communicate face to face. Facial expressions can contribute to the conversation by relaying to the receiver some of the intentions and motivations of the speaker. According to a study done by Jeroen Stouten and David De Cremer in “Seeing is Believing”; The Effects of Facial Expressions of Emotional and Verbal Communication in Social Dilemmas1, people tend to be good at assigning emotions to facial expressions. Two of the most easily recognizable facial expressions are angry and happy. The more important part of this, however, is what those emotions say to the receiver as well as how the receiver will accept or reject the message. For example, a happy facial expression is more likely to be taken as cooperative, and the receiver may be more trusting. On the other hand, anger can be taken as challenging or hostile, making the receiver less likely to receive the message. Knowing how different facial expressions, combined with some self-awareness, can affect the communication process dramatically by helping a communicator to match their facial expression to the message being sent, rather than the current emotion. A person’s voice is another important factor in communication. Volume, timbre and rate of speech all give distinct characteristics to the content that is being said. When a person speaks too loud, the message may seem hostile. If the voice is too quiet, the receiver may not understand or hear the message. If a speaker is speaking too fast, miscommunication may occur due to not catching everything that the speaker has to say. In the study “On How Things Are Said; Voice Tone, Voice Intensity, Verbal Content and Perceptions of Politeness” by Debi LaPlante and Nalini Ambady of Harvard University2, the study found that when positive statements were made with conflicting, negative tones of voice, the recipients of the message “substantially affected the judges’ ratings of the politeness for positive content.” What this means is that if a person is trying to come across with a positive statement, such as telling an employee that they are doing a good job, but the tone is too loud or too high pitched, the message that the employee may receive is one of sarcasm. Another part of the voice to take into consideration is filler words, such as “uh” or “um.” By using these kinds of words, it conveys the message that the speaker does not know or fully understand what they are talking about, or it may convey the message that the speaker is lying. In a world that is rapidly shrinking due to technology, it is important to realize that different cultures have different meanings for nonverbal communication. In a study published in Sino-US English Teaching, 2007, “Nonverbal Communication in Cross-Culture Communication” by Wang De-Hua and Li Hui, misunderstandings can arise from a lack of knowledge of…