Bite size – what is nonviolent communication?

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Welcome to Bite Size – our bi-monthly blog where we explore a topic in bite size form – short, sharp and easy to digest

“Nonviolent Communication” preaches compassion and empathy in communication. In 2003 psychologist Marshall B. Rosenberg published a book, “Nonviolent Communication”, where he explored compassion and empathy as cornerstones of effective communication.

In the book he investigates four components of effective communication:

  • Observe what is happening in a situation
  • State how you feel when you observe the situation
  • Express how your needs are connected to the feelings you have identified
  • Address what you want by requesting a direct action

He also looks at how our observations are often clouded by pre-conceived evaluations and how we need to strengthen our vocabulary for feelings.

By understanding these areas business communication can be more effective and less damaging. This is particularly important if a company has an ingrained culture of hostility, infighting, and backstabbing. In this instance a company needs to move forward and evolve the way it communicates as an overall company as well as how it encourages individual team members and leaders to communicate with each other.

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