Barriers of Communication: Types of Barriers to Effective Communication

Barriers of Communication

Barriers of Communication: Communication is an important way to share your ideas, and information and express your feelings and emotions. To ensure your information or messages are conveyed effectively and understood well by another person, effective communication is necessary. If there is any type of communication barrier be it lack of skill, verbal ability, or confidence, then you won’t be able to convey your message properly. 

What Are the Barriers to Communication?

Several barriers can hinder the process of effective communication including physiological, geographical, cultural and psychological obstacles. Always keep in mind that every obstacle has its own set of challenges. To communicate effectively, one needs to overcome these barriers.

Lack of Verbal Ability:  

Lack of ability to express your thoughts or communicate due to limited vocabulary is one of the chief barriers. This chief barrier to effective communication is also known as the semantic barrier. Individuals with with limited vocabulary, usually struggle or find it challenging to express their thoughts. They find it tough to communicate fluently and effectively because at times they find it difficult to use the right words to convey their message. Consequently, communication may be delayed, leading to communication gaps, misunderstandings, and irritation for both parties involved.

Processing Time:

It is also one of the most common communication barriers. The processing time causes challenges, especially for individuals who are communicating in a second language instead of their mother tongue. Converting the mother tongue to a second language usually takes additional time, leading to delayed communication and disrupted communication flow.  The processing time barrier can be overcome by learning the new language with a positive mindset.

Missing Clarity in Ideas:

If the clarity in ideas is missing or lacking, then it will not be easy for an individual to communicate. Make sure to have a solid idea of a topic before discussing it. Lack of idea of topic causes not only difficulty in building sentences but also conveying your thoughts. 

Different Local Language:

Individuals belonging to different regions usually experience this barrier due to different local languages. Due to differences in speaking and pronouncing words, there is always confusion. Eg. Individuals from Punjab won’t be able to understand the local language of any other state or country. So, they will find it difficult to communicate with individuals from different regions or cities. To overcome this barrier, the individual should know basic words of that particular region or should hire a transcriptor to make communication effective.

Physiological Barriers:  

Apart from geographical errors, physiological barriers also play an important role in hindering communication. An individual with physiological problems autism which leads to speech problems, hearing disorders, and delayed development will generally experience these kinds of barriers. This kind of individuals struggle to create the words on their own and even be unable to understand other’s words.

Cultural Barrier:

Individuals belonging to different cultures, communicate and experience cultural barriers. Every culture and community has different meanings of the same phrase, word, and term.  In other words, we can say that the same word may have different meanings in two cultures. Eg. the meaning of the word “Pissed” in the U.S. is Angry and in the U.K. it’s drunk.

Also Read: 30 Opposite Words in English From A to Z?

Disadvantages of Communication Barriers

Communication barriers have several disadvantages including:

  • Barriers cause difficulty in communication.
  • Can cause low self-esteem and embarrassment.
  • Makes individuals unable to express their feelings and thoughts.
  • It can cause misunderstanding between two individuals
  • Missed opportunity
  • Communication barriers can cause conflict between two persons and make the conversation stressful.
  • It can prevent an individual from getting any opportunity.

Advantages of Effective Communication Skills

Here are the advantages of good communication skills:

Advantages of Effective Communication Skills
  • High self-confidence
  • Good personality
  • Increased productivity
  • Express thoughts effectively
  • You can convince people with powerful communication skills.
  • Career Advancement
  • Enhanced Collaboration

Also Read: Adverbs: Definition, Types, Usage and Examples

How to Deal With the Communication Barriers?

Here are some ways to combat communication barriers:

  1. Understand your weak areas during communication and try to improve them well via practicing. Practicing conversation with yourself, record it and listen to it to understand whether the problem is with grammar, pronunciation, or any other area. Keep practicing to improve it.
  2. Join courses to improve your communication skills.
  3. Communicate with your buddies, and teammates to improve your fluency.
  4. Read books to improve your vocabulary.
  5. Practice movie dialogues in the language that you want to communicate with others
  6. Get one-to-one guidance from the tutors to improve your weak areas.


Good communication skills is a key to effective communication. There are several ways to overcome communication barriers and make communication effective. One of the best ways is to understand your weak areas and work on them to improve your vocabulary and enhance your skills.

About The Author

Knowledge Glow

I am Komal Gupta, the founder of Knowledge Glow, and my team and I aim to fuel dreams and help the readers achieve success. While you prepare for your competitive exams, we will be right here to assist you in improving your general knowledge and gaining maximum numbers from objective questions. We started this website in 2021 to help students prepare for upcoming competitive exams. Whether you are preparing for civil services or any other exam, our resources will be valuable in the process.

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