Why Interpersonal Communication Fails

Supportive communication promotes understanding and helpfulness. Things get done through good interpersonal communication.


Quality interpersonal communication helps to overcome the following features of poor working relationships and helps to get tasks accomplished:

  • One individual feels threatened or attacked as a result of communication.
  • Self-protection becomes the most important part of the interaction.
  • We spend all, or most, of our energy in making a defence instead of actually listening.
  • Aggression, anger, competitiveness and strategies that promote avoidance are all common reactions.
  • One individual feels incompetent or insignificant as a result of the conversation taking place.
  • The focus is upon re-establishing and renewing self-worth and self-assurance.
  • Energy is spent with a focus upon trying to portray self-importance rather than on listening to what is being said or discussed.
  • Showing self-centred behaviour, withdrawal from the conversation and a marked loss of motivation.

Make sure that in any interpersonal communication you are part of you look to identify the above and change the interaction accordingly to remove them.

Good Luck!

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