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Improving Nonverbal Communication

Describe ways to improve nonverbal communication in 700-1,050 words. Be sure to discuss the following questions:

How do you know that your perception of what is being communicated is accurate?
Which nonverbal cues can potentially convey a misunderstanding? An
understanding?
How can criminal justice professionals build strong nonverbal communication skills?

Illustrate each point with personal or professional examples. Please be sure to provide any sources.

I need help getting stated. Thank you kindly.

Solution Preview

Hello,

Interesting assignment. One approach is to look at the three questions, which you can then draw on for your final 700-1050 word paper. If this is an academic paper, it will need to include the introduction (including a purpose statement), body (the questions can act as a tentative outline for the paper) and a conclusion (restate the thesis or purpose statement and sum up main points).

RESPONSE:

QUESTION: Describe ways to improve nonverbal communication in 700-1,050 words. Be sure to discuss the following questions:

Let's take a closer look at each question.

1. How do you know that your perception of what is being communicated is accurate?

The best way to know if your perception of what is being communicated is accurate is b engaging in a communication skills often referred to as perception checking. Usually, a person first summarized the message of what you think you heard and perceived and then add something like: Is that it? Or, is that what you mean? The questions are perception checking. This allows the speaker to clarify if it is not what she or he intended. Conversely, if it is what the speaker intended, then she or he can say something like: "Exactly!"

Asking the right question is at the heart of effective communications and information exchange. By using the right questions in a particular situation, you can improve a whole range of communications skills including perception checking, For example, you can gather better information and learn more; you can build stronger relationships, manage people more effectively and help others to learn too. On the other hand, misplaced closed question can kill the conversation and lead to awkward silences, so are best avoided when a conversation is in full flow. However, closed questions are effective as a way to check if your understanding of what you perceived the message to be to see if your perception is accurate. For example, closed questions are often good for perception checking and testing your understanding, or the other person's: "So, if I get this qualification, I will get a rise? Is that right?" (http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newTMC_88.htm)

2. Which nonverbal cues can potentially convey a misunderstanding? An understanding?

Nonverbal cues are often referred to nonverbal communication (as opposed to verbal communication). The major categories of nonverbal communications include the following (and will be discussed in greater detail further): personal space, eye contact, position, posture, paralanguage, expression, gesture, touch, locomotion, pacing, adornment, context and physiologic responses (http://www.blatner.com/adam/level2/nverb1.htm).

Nonverbal cues are indeed significant in communication, and can potentially convey a misunderstanding. In fact, it is often how something is expressed that may carry more significance and weight than what is actually said, the words themselves. For example, accompanied by a smile or a frown, said with a loud, scolding voice or a gentle, easy one, the contents of our communications are framed by our holistic perceptions of their context. Those sending the messages may learn to understand themselves better as well as learning to exert some greater consciousness about their manner of speech. Those receiving the messages may learn to better understand their own intuitive responses-sometimes in contrast to what it seems "reasonable" to think. However, if the correction worker or manager uses loud and scolding voice, accompanied with a smile, the receiver of the message is getting mixed messages and can easily perceive the smile to be "phony."

Cultures convey differences in nonverbal cues, which are very significant. For example, two people from different cultures can fail to understand each other. Some of these differences reflect language and translation problems. But many others involve subtle differences in nonverbal cues, such as etiquette, gestures, values, norms, rituals, expectations, and other important cross-cultural variations. In fact, cross-cultural communication can be difficult, inaccurate, and highly stressful. When we are immersed in an environment where the language, attitudes, values, and behaviors are alien to our own experience, we may suffer disorientation and frustration--an experience known as "culture shock" (http://zzyx.ucsc.edu/~archer/vid6.html).

In addition, misunderstandings can occur when nonverbal cues can potentially convey a misunderstanding is when the verbal communication and the nonverbal cue are mismatched. For example, if the manager or correction worker replies, "what a good ...

Solution Summary

This solution describes ways to improve nonverbal communication on several dimensions e.g. how you know that your perception of what is being communicated is accurate, which nonverbal cues can potentially convey a misunderstanding or an
understanding and how criminal justice professionals can build strong nonverbal communication skills.

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