How Much Noise is in Our Environments?

Alex Mestres discussed how different noise in our environment can inhibit our communication and prevent people from hearing the complete message that we are trying to convey. She talked about how our brains can become good at filtering out a lot of ambient noise but this can trick us into thinking that we are in a great communication environment. I remember when I was in Iraq and was in charge of all the communications for a convey security team to make sure that we could effectively communicate with everyone around us at all times. With radio frequencies it is important to understand what frequency range you are operating in because they have different characteristics based on frequency range. We also had to make sure we knew who we wanted to talk to and what equipment they were using and that it was all properly encoded. One thing I realized is that dirt got in our equipment very quickly because we spent so much time on the road, so we had to spent extra time maintaining our communication equipment. In a very similar manner, Alex and I talked about looking at our teams and organizations to see what our communication practices were to look for the noise in them to discover what was blocking positive communication from occurring. Alex said we need to be present in our communication, both in what we say and how we listen. That means we have to work to remove the obstacles that block our ability to communicate effectively with others. Some of those obstacles can be our own biases or our preconceived ideology. There is also a lot of background noise that limits people’s ability to process the information we are presenting and we can work on limiting that noise. By focusing on these things we can limit auditory fatigue and find ways to include every member of our organizations more completely in our communication. Listen to more from Alex on the embedded Spotify player below or on Apple Podcasts @

I set up a YouTube Channel @ to lead by example in this regard so I could work on having my content in a format with closed captioning. My most recent episode is now available on YouTube @ with closed captioning and I have imported the other episodes over to my newly established YouTube Channel so I can work on adding closed captioning to them as well. This can be a great way to be more inclusive in our communication as some people like to process their messages by reading along with listening even though they might not having any hearing challenges. It is especially vital for those with hearing challenges to have these options available!

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