The Need to Communicate Effectively


One basic human need of management students in the modern world is the ability to communicate. Today, the desire to exchange information with others and gain knowledge in the process has become a prerequisite for success. But hurdles in this process are inhibitions in the minds of the communicators. Several times in management classrooms, students face this mental roadblock. They have brilliant ideas in their minds but are unable to articulate them. One of the reasons for this is a lack of knowledge about the communicatee and confusion about the symbols to be used in the communication process.

As pointed out by Dr. M. M. Monippally in his article ‘Seven Communication Roadblocks’, we are all too busy with ourselves to work seriously towards knowing others. Most of us do not go beyond gossiping about others. And gossip, according to Dr Monippally, tends to reduce “three-dimensional people” into “two-dimensional caricatures”. Gossip tends to portray its victims in a negative light, though it gives a sense of superiority to the ‘gossipers’. This leads to the gradual stifling of attempts to know others, thereby leading to miscommunication.

So how do we change things? The world is huge and getting to know millions of people around us is not practically feasible. There are risks involved in the process also-risks of being influenced by the flow of information, risks of shifting orientation towards communication.

Knowing the people to communicate with is a slow and continuous process because the people involved in the process are far from static. Values, perspectives, and knowledge bases change—so to communicate effectively, we need to keep track of all these changes. Knowing others and communicating with them is a two-way street wherein mutual knowledge is shared for the benefit of all.

Anuradha Pandit


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