Body Language Communication

Essay by rjamesCollege, UndergraduateA, December 2006

download word file, 5 pages 4.5


Understanding nonverbal communication and body language is a very important part of the work environment. Effective communication is essential in today's workplace. Functions, forms and cultural differences will help make communication more effective. "Studies show that you words account for only 7% of the messages you convey. The remaining 93% is nonverbal. 55% of communication is based on what people see and the other 38% is transmitted through tone of voice." Ramsey (2005). This paper will help you understand body language at work and how people must be aware of the messages they send through body language. I will describe the functions and the forms of body language, such as eye contact, posture and appearance. Cultural differences and misconceptions will also be addressed, which may lead to misinterpreted meanings.

Functions of nonverbal communications

Body language is overlooked in today's world. The messages that can be sent by body language are overlooked.

Body language, if noticed, leaves a lasting impression and you only get one chance to make a first impression. As noted before, 55% of communication is based on what people see. Hand gestures tell a lot about the message you are trying to get across. According to Helenius (2000), "In the United States, for example, the "OK" hand gesture conveys enthusiasm or approval of a business associate's suggestion. But flash that sign in France, where it's synonymous with "zero" or "worthless," and your business counterpart might be tempted to close up shop and go home. The same goes in Brazil, where the "OK" sign has prurient significance and is considered vulgar." People are unaware of the messages they are sending to reinforce and accentuate the message they are sending through body language. Waving goodbye as you leave or pass someone is considered body language. Your facial expressions...