The sender-receiver model of communication is propagated in many books and courses. It is assumed that information can be packaged in language and that this information can also be unpacked by the recipient. Neurobiologically, that doesn’t make sense. We receive sound waves and these sound waves are processed again. These sounds and words activate networks and images in our head. These images are shaped by the past. It is unlikely, that in the head of the receiver the same thing is activated as in the head of the transmitter. It is very important to realize which images do I trigger and what kind of networks do I stimulate in the other person.
We communicate with others, whether verbal or non-verbal, because we are in a relationship. These can be good, bad, intense, or loose relationships. During communication, there is always something expressed or conveyed about the relationship. Even if we are ostensibly talking about a certain topic, the subliminal point is often the relationship. Communication takes place on different levels. There is at least one content level and one relationship level. We always have to be aware that we always use many levels in communication.
People don’t only interpret with their own structures and patterns. In communication, they also express what moves them and what is important to them, how they evaluate things and what they feel. Listening is one of the most important things in communication in order to notice what moves the other. And the better we listen and the more we know about thought patterns and structures, the better we can notice what the other person is thinking. That improves communication enormously.
One of the biggest mistakes we make at work is trying to resolve interpersonal issues at the content level. We often argue about technical problems, even though the cause lies in personal injuries. Neuroleadership is about understanding people in their complexity and simplifying and improving communication on the various levels.