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Chapter 11. Show Time Overview and Nonve... > Those All-Important Nonverbal Messag...

Those All-Important Nonverbal Messages

The nonverbal messages may prevent the spoken and graphic message from being heard or given proper attention. A presenter's appearance, posture, style, or mannerisms can be so strongly sensed and interpreted as poor by audience members that the true intended message—the ideas, arguments, substantiating material, visual aids—will be seen through clouded eyes (or their eyes may even be closed!). The contrary is true as well; audience members may become better inclined to listen to what a speaker has to say because his or her nonverbal messages are pleasing to them.

Psychologist Albert Mehrabian underscores the importance of nonverbal communication.[8] His studies show that when two people communicate, less than 10 percent of a key measure of communication success—total liking—comes from the words that are spoken. Over 50 percent of the message comes from facial expressions and nearly 40 percent from vocal tone or expression, called paralanguage (how something is said).


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