Types of communication barriers in business
- Here are some of the most common and impactful communication barriers in business:
- Incorrect or inadequate communication channels
- Language differences
- Cultural differences
- Departmental differences
- Mismatched communication styles
- Excessively complex messaging
- Lack of context
- Rushed communication
- Ineffective timing
- Let’s explore what each of these looks like in the real world and discuss some practices your company can implement now to begin taking down these barriers.
Incorrect or inadequate communication channels
One of the major tenets of effective business communication is pairing the right channel with the right message. Using the wrong channel can make your message ineffective. For example, an urgent notice may seem less time-sensitive if sent by email versus text. Response times may be delayed as a result. In another example, calling a customer when they would have preferred an email can negatively impact a business relationship.
Ways to overcome this barrier:
- Review the channels you have available to ensure they are sufficient. If you only have email and chat available, that may be insufficient for all audiences.
- Choose rich, direct channels, such as email, for longer, more complicated messages; save simpler messages for channels such as text or chat.
- Keep your audience’s preferred channels in mind and adjust your approach accordingly. You may even send the same message differently to subsets of your audience based on their preferred channel of communication.
Update legacy communication channels regularly to avoid technical difficulties