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Talking through grenade-proof doors.


Our leadership is largely manifested through communication and it follows that, to a large degree, the effectiveness of our communication determines the effectiveness of our leadership.

Let’s take that a step further…


‘Our communication largely determines how successful our team is.’


Big call, but I think entirely justified.


Barriers to communication can be either physical, or non-physical. In the video, we see an example of some of the physical barriers to communications present in my workplace. Can you identify any additional ones?

In aviation, when communication is ineffective, the results can be catastrophic and often results in large loss of life. This is unacceptable to the traveling public, and for this reason, regulators have forced airlines to mitigate these barriers through constant research, training and systems development.


Some of the ways aviation has mitigated these barriers:


  • standardized phraseology

  • standardized 'reports'

  • use of lights and aural alerts

  • readback of critical information after briefing


Sometimes, simple acknowledgment of the barrier will mitigate it. "A problem well stated is a problem half solved".


Your organisation may not have had the same impetus for change, but as leader, you own it! Your communications landscape is yet another responsibility you have as part of the privilege of serving your team. If you can identify and then effectively mitigate your workplace’s communication barriers, you WILL be increasing your team’s effectiveness.


Next time, we’ll look at the non-physical barriers to communication. These are less obvious, but often much more pervasive.


What physical barriers to communication are present in your workplace?

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