Cultural Patterns and Communication Breakdowns

Repeated definitions and redefinitions have been accorded to both culture and communication as both of them are concepts that have intimate connection to what humans consider intrinsic. This paper focuses on ways in which the differing cultural patterns could lead to problems and misunderstandings. It is significant for people, in whichever situation or communication context, to have desirable communication skills that can enable them engage in various forms of communication with people from different backgrounds (Rosso, 2014). Working with people whose cultural backgrounds are diverse calls for incorporation of more flexibility in one’s approach. This is because the slight variations in the cultural values can easily fuel misunderstandings and even conflicts.

Problems and misunderstandings that arise in intercultural communications often result from differences in cultural values. Different cultural patterns influence different communication styles, which, in a larger context, can be considered as the main cause for misunderstandings with respect to intercultural communication. Differences in cultural patterns usually cause problems due indirectness or directness of the message, verbal routines and ad-hoc formulation, orientation towards others and self, implicitness and explicitness, and orientation towards addressees and content (Samovar & Porter, 2012). It should, also, be noted that cultural influence on communication can also be reflected in various other cultural beliefs, attitudes, and values that can be used in a different descriptive group of intercultural misunderstandings. Lack of confidence can be considered as another way in which differing cultural patterns could lead to problems and misunderstandings. In some circumstances, some people become afraid of suggesting new and progressive ideas due to fear of making mistakes.

It is significant to note that implementing a number of recommendations can lead to better intercultural communication. The first one entails breaking assumptions: it is true that all people make assumptions about others that do not entail objective truth; but only beliefs influenced by various subjective factors. In order to experience improved intercultural communication, people require breaking the negative beliefs or ideas that they hold against others. The second one getting everyone involved in decision making or various tasks in order to establish constructive relationships (Samovar & Porter, 2012). Proper utilization of intercultural diversity can provide a platform that incorporates various points of view in order to generate creative strategies for solving problems. The third recommendation entails discouraging herd mentality. This is a way of reasoning that discourages innovation, advancement and creativity and restricts people to a certain mode of reasoning. The fourth recommendation is about shunning insensitive behavior. In order to improve intercultural communications, people should stop behaving in ways that are culturally insensitive. Instead, they should think through their actions and words in order to display appropriate actions.

In conclusion, it is essential to apply effective communication techniques to avoid misconception and subsequent communication breakdowns. The first technique is improved listening skills. In order for a person to communicate effectively, he or she should be able to pay attention and listen to what other people have to say without causing any interruptions (Ryan, 2015). The second technique is tailoring the message appropriately for the audience. In this regard, it is necessary to use different communication styles while addressing coworkers, the boss, elders or kids. The third technique is putting destructions away.  For instance, it is not proper for a person to operate a phone while someone else is talking to him or her.

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