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This 4 page Bundle was uploaded by Sofia Sikandar on Thursday July 21, 2016. The Bundle belongs to 70938 - PHYS 160 - 001 at George Mason University taught by Robert N Oerter (P) in Summer 2016. Since its upload, it has received 9 views. For similar materials see University Physics I - in Physics at George Mason University.
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Date Created: 07/21/16
Ashley Whimpey Professor Patrick HNRS 230 004 May 4 2016 Building Clear Channels with Best Practices Through channels of communication in intercultural groups, exchanged messages influence group projects and professional teams. In Intercultural Communication in Context, author’s Judith Martin and Thomas Nakayama explain, “to recognize and embrace our connectedness even to people who differ from us, we have to engage in true dialogue,” (480). True dialogue adopts mindful best practices, which renovate broken channels into skillful pathways of communication that transfer the intended message clearly. Pursuing best practices in i) verbal, ii) nonverbal, and iii) written communication crafts open pathways, therefore aligning group members to develop exemplary products, leverage team strengths, and engage in proactive instead of reactive crosscultural contact. First, within verbal communication, open channels begin with respecting and valuing team members. In Culture Induced Complexity, Bill Richardson refers to this behavior as a “multiplier” attitude. The attitude suggests regarding team members as valuable human beings, each bringing forth their unique combinations of energy, perspective, knowledge, and passion (1). In turn, this perspective encourages empathetic, trusting responses, and invites all team members to exercise voice. Martin and Nakayama argue advancing trusting environments most importantly invites dialogue from populations who have historically been silenced or maintain reserved speaking preferences (479). In illustration, the authors describe a traveler from Finland who was never provided an explicit chance to speak, and therefore withheld their ideas. Once all members feel safe to speak, good listening becomes imperative. Good listeners resist the tendency to listen only to the most assertive voices, and then ask clarifying questions. George Mason’s Cross Cultural Communication professor, Megan Patrick, advises to avoid using only yesno questions and frame questions as phrases such as: “When can this reach completion?” Marin and Nakayama explain, “When people feel excluded, they often simply shut down, physically or mentally abandoning the conversation. When this happens, their potential contributions—to some decision, activity, or change—are lost” (479). Good verbal communication positions team members to collaborate freely within group projects. Like verbal exchanges, strong team members also practice good “listening” in nonverbal communication, which includes anything not spoken or written. Martin and Nakayama compare the impressions of silence amongst different cultures. While typically Americans feel silence as “awkward” or uncomfortable, many nonWestern cultures sense silence as a sign of respect. For example, “holding silence” for another demonstrates profound respect. The authors further that holding silence fosters connectedness in situations where emotions run high, like periods of grief (279). This approach sets a foundation of openness, curiosity, and empathy imperative to team achievement (480). In Communication Between Cultures, Samovar et al. explain pertinence of “tolerance for ambiguity,” or delaying fulfilment of the need for certainty, when experiencing a new culture (245). The delay buys time to gain important insight to a culture through observation, or mindfulness. Mindful members then mirror pace, tempo, and energy levels they observe in their conversation partner, and more effectively communicate intended messages. As a few suggestions, these nonverbal approaches establish safety and desired clear communication routes to fully engage project members in collaboration. Lastly, the final channel, written communication, should utilize a utilize communication scholar Megan Patrick’s 10 Cs methodology to the message intent and reception alignment. The first, referring to completion, instructs strong communicators to write without making assumptions, and encourages clearly addressing the elements of “who, what, when, where, why, and how.” The second, concision, and the third, clear language, suggests getting to the point and remaining free of jargon or acronyms. This means using simple language with only one possible interpretation within its context. The fourth, courteous, and the fifth, conversational, the writing demonstrates words of a kind human being, instead of one who presents a set of diction that shows to be meaningless and cold. Author Bill Richardson supports these Cs, claiming them vital to an environment where members, “feel they may ask questions” (9). The sixth (accuracy), and seventh (degree of cohesion), and eighth (credibility) ensure the writing delivers powerful and meaningful information. These facts include: spelling names correctly, manipulating data from reputable sources, and presenting information that is readable and comprehensible. The final two C’s, the ninth (calling to action) and the tenth (concrete phrasing), prompt strong writers to direct language into instructions that describe specific and easily measurable actions. An example of concrete phrasing transforms, “You need to work harder,” into “come to class on time, and participate in discussions with comments based on the reading done before arriving,” (“Best Practices, April 25,” 21). In addition to her 10 C’s, Patrick advises follow up messages within minutes from the end of meetings to ensure tasks remain tight and on track with the assignment. Written communication plants an important stake in establishing skillful, unconfined pathways that lead to stronger teams and sounder projects. Developing phenomenal final products in professional, or academic, group settings requires open pathways of communication built through mindful and proactive efforts in verbal, nonverbal, and written channels. Each requires its own individual practices to achieve “true dialogue,” resulting in full benefit and leverage of team strengths. These few suggestions of best practices provide a guide to freeing communication channels and ultimately ardent completed products of the best quality of work.
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