Verbal & Non-Verbal Communication Across Cultures

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BUIS 303
August 2012
Verbal & Non-Verbal Communication Across Cultures
Verbal & Non-Verbal Communication across cultures
Definition: Non- Verbal: Behavior and elements of speech aside from the words themselves that transmit meaning. Non-verbal communication includes pitch, speed, tone and volume of voice, gestures and facial expressions, body posture, stance, and proximity to the listener, eye movements and contact, and dress and appearance. (Merriam & Webster) Verbal: The sharing of information between individuals by using speech. Individuals working within a business need to effectively use verbal communication that employs readily understood spoken words, as well as ensuring that the enunciation, stress and tone of voice with which the words are expressed is appropriate. (Merriam & Webster)

Summary: Kinesics is closely related to body language as well as verbal and non-verbal communication. Non-verbal communication and especially body language communicates our thoughts and emotions more than words. Throughout our social experience we are continually processing and giving off non-verbal cues. Since body language movements are done at a subconscious level, they can often reveal things to others before a conversation is even started. These non-verbal cues are picked up on by the observer and they interpret them based on their experience. Research has found that 7% of the emotional meaning of a message is composed of the actual words we use; 38 percent is communicated through the tone of voice and inflection; and 55% comes through our body language. Adel & Hermann du Plessis in their article titled “A DIFFERENT LANGUAGE CALLED KINESICS” discuss how kinesics are used all the time in most of our interactions with people. But as an intentional, conscious skill, it is the most underrated and least used of all business skills. Discussion:

In the business world, effectually communicating with people is a must. There are now countless training course and...
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