Warm up! Make a list of five things that could keep you from being able to listen. Do this and get BONUSED!
Can you hear me talking? Does that mean that you are a good listener? A person with normal hearing is not necessarily a good listener. Many different things can prevent a speaker’s message from being received… These are called barriers to listening.
Let’s guess some listening barriers… There are three major barriers to listening… External barriers Speaker barriers And listener barriers
External Barriers External barriers are situations in the environment that keep you from paying careful attention to the speaker. What are some external barriers?
External Barrier Examples Bee flying around your head An ambulance siren Cell phone going off Coughing Whispering Giggling
External Barriers External barriers can be temporary and unusual, but they also can be permanent. External barriers exist outside the speakers and listeners but can greatly interfere with communication.
External Barrier Solutions Shut the window Close the door Turn off the cell phone Good listeners recognize the distractions and ignore or remove them. Usually good speakers try to adapt to them in order to help the listeners.
Speaker Barriers What are speaker barriers? Speaker barriers are characteristics of the speaker that interfere with listening. They include appearance and manner, prejudice, and believability. Why are these relevant as speaker barriers?
Distracting Appearance and Manner Some speakers turn off their audiences through their appearance or by their manner of speaking. Appearance may interfere with the message. How could the speaker’s appearance interfere with the message?
Appearance If you are distracted by a speaker’s clothes, jewelry, or hairstyle, you may miss the main point of the message.
Manner Some people constantly use filler words such as “you know,” or “like.” Remember the “Um” game… What are some other examples of “filler” words? Others look at the floor, tap their fingers during a conversation. These habits distract listeners, who remember the annoying habit rather than the message.
Prejudice Speakers who appear narrow-minded or prejudiced also turn off listeners. Listeners are not likely to concentrate on the message when they are upset. Or, have you ever pre-judged someone and later realized that you were wrong?
Lack Of Believability Listeners need to believe that the speaker knows his or her subject well. A speaker with low believability may create barriers to listening. What if Paris Hilton was going to give a speech about global warming? Or would you listen to speech from Hanna Montana about the importance of universal health care.
What Makes A Person Believable? A person’s formal or informal reputation precedes a message. Sometimes a speaker establishes believability during a conversation. Example…When I won a Michael Jackson dance competition in Houston….
Lack Of Believability Examples What if two people are talking about sports? What if they sound like they do not know what they are talking about? If they seem to know little about the topic they tend to create a barrier between themselves and the listener.
Listener Barriers Listener barriers are personal attitudes or behaviors that interfere with listening. You can keep yourself from being a competent communicator. What are some examples of listener barriers?
Listener Barrier Examples Internal distractions Lack of knowledge Personal prejudices And your desire to talk All of these may get in the way of listening
Internal Distractions Your thoughts, feelings, or physical distractions can interfere with listening. Examples… Argument with a friend, bad test grade, thinking about you weekend plans. Physical distress, headaches, cramps, lack of sleep, etc.
Lack Of Knowledge Sometime you will find that no matter how hard you try to listen, you cannot understand what the speaker is saying. Remember Charlie Brown? Your past experience or classes may not have you prepared for a discussion on rock collecting, or bluegrass music. Or if a speaker constantly uses terms you are not familiar with like fade-away, dunk, assist, lane violation, or traveling.
Coping With Lack Of Knowledge How could we be good listeners in such a situation? Good listeners take the risk of asking questions to clear up what they cannot understand. They also try to learn to interpret new words and nonverbal symbols to be more effective listeners in the future.
Personal Prejudice Personal beliefs may also keep you from really hearing what another person has to say. People have their own beliefs on certain subjects. These beliefs may reflect a listener’s studies or upbringing and can be difficult to change. Some people believe they know everything about a certain topic.
Personal Prejudice Continued Some people thing they cannot learn anything new by listening carefully to others. This attitude leads to closed minds and creates barriers to communication. What are some examples of personal prejudice?
Personal Prejudice Examples Sensitive topics can cause barriers to good listening. If a person you just met asks you about your religion, you may put up a barrier. Sometimes after you hear the speaker’s view you determine that your view is opposite, and you decide not to listen. Like politics, sports teams, clothes, music, etc.
Desire To Talk Many people would rather talk than listen. Have you ever been in an argument, and just couldn’t wait for your turn to talk? Very little listening is going on in these situations. We do not listen to the other persons ideas, and just repeat our own over and over.
Desire To Talk Help Good listeners try to listen until a speaker is finished. Then they start to respond. Sometime people compete to “top” another person’s story, joke, etc. Examples… Every speaker and listener has the responsibility to try to communicate with the other. Communication breaks down when barriers go up and one or both persons stop trying to reach each other.
Guidelines For Good Listening Watch for nonverbal clues Try to see things from the speaker’s point of view Avoid distractions Listen for the new and unusual idea Listen for repetition (I Have A Dream) Get prepared (clear mind)
More Guidelines For Good Listening Respond to the speaker Apply the ideas to yourself (How does this relate to me?) Listen for structure Review, and review your points