In any social or business context the non-verbal expressions of the participants provide important clues to the meaning of the message. These are grouped into open and closed body language. One of the skills school-based trainees learn is reading body language, this topic is covered extensively in the core unit SITXCOM001A Work with Colleagues and Customers.
Body language is the unspoken communication that goes on in every face to face encounter with another person where we portray openness and approval through our postures and gestures, or disagreement when our response is negative to the message.
Most body language is unconscious, that is, we are unaware of what our body is saying. Between 60-80% of our message is communicated through body language, only 7-10% is attributable to the actual words of a conversation, the other 7-10% is attributable to paralanguage (speech elements).
It is crucial that when dealing with customers and colleagues we become aware of our non-verbal signals. The way people interpret our body language has a major impact on how they hear our message. These essential skills are all presented in the core unit Work with Colleagues and Customers and assist school-based trainees improve their communication skills both in the workplace and at school.