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Effective Communication Essay

1225 words - 5 pages

Effective Communication
Shelly Alexander
CJA/304
February 10, 2014
Jeffery Pomerantz

Abstract
The following information will include: the process of verbal and non-verbal communication with each of the associated components. The difference between hearing and listening in communication. How formal and informal channels of communication differ in criminal justice organizations. How different barriers lessen effective communication in criminal justice organizations. Ways to prevent barriers in the criminal justice organization by using different strategies.

Effective Communication
Communication is a process involving several steps; the goal is to transfer an ...view middle of the document...

Also, if redundancy occurs while using radios, the officer may make the message clearer because of static or other interference.
Nonverbal communication entails written communication as well as body language such as eye contact, posture, facial expressions, and jerky movements. Police reports are an important written communication because prosecutors use them when issuing criminal complaints. Officers reread them to refresh their memory when testifying in court because the court dates are often months after the initial writing. Probation officers use them when deciding what punishment suits the person serving probation. Other nonverbal communication, body language, can tell an officer if a person is nervous. If the person is nervous he or she may be lying, and the officer can ask other questions to find out the truth. Therefore, verbal and nonverbal communication is important in the field of law enforcement and should not be taken lightly.
Listening and hearing in communication is also different. Hearing is the first step in the communication process. The ear picks up sound waves, transmitting them to the brain. Listening comes after hearing and to be proficient, must be an active process. The listener will evaluate the message then respond to the sender. However, there are barriers to effective listening. An uninteresting or boring topic the listener does not want to hear. There may be a prejudice contrary to the speaker. Emotional involvement of an officer, such as excitement or stress, may interfere with the information process. Distractions from previous communications or the surrounding environment may make listening hard. A person has to concentrate on listening and use feedback or ask questions to make sure he or she understood the message. Often messages are fed down from the top person in command in any large organization.
Criminal justice organizations have formal and informal channels of communication. This is the process or ways by which information flows from the sender to the receiver. Formal channels usually follow the chain of command providing a sense of order and security in law enforcement agencies. Guaranteeing all officers receive the identical information regarding the tenacity or content of the message. However, drawbacks are a given with excessive or exclusive use of formal channels. Strict rules to follow is a time and personnel-consuming effort. For example: To search a person’s house, first an officer must obtain a search warrant which takes time to go through the channels of communication. Evidence disappears waiting on the warrant to arrive. Free flow of information by spontaneous ideas and thought can be restricted. A written record must be kept and any change or modification will take time to correct.
Informal channels like the grapevine, or departmental gossip, are the unofficial routes of delivering information within a law enforcement agency. For example: Detectives approach parole officers for...

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