Barriers to effective communication will reduce productivity within the firm and, if serious, may cause diseconomies of scale in a firm. Barriers to communication are often referred to as ‘noise’. Noise is anything that gets in the way of effective communication and ‘blocks’ or distorts the message.
This may be physical noise e.g. a lawnmower outside of the classroom window. However it can be many other factors. Attitudes and beliefs, bigotry and experience will affect the perception of a message. If you believe your boss is always out to ‘put you down’, and she suggests extra training, this may be perceived as a punishment or threat, even if it is intended simply to make you more effective.
Other factors creating ‘Noise’ may include:
Distance, different time zones
Language or jargon that is not understood by the recipient
The corporate culture may not promote the sharing of communication
Information overload – receivers cannot cope with the volume
Time e.g. different time zones
Sexism and racism
Poor resources e.g. limited access to technology
Lack of education and training
Poor selection of medium of communication