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Four Sides of a Message

The Four-sides model (“Hamburger Modell”) by Friedemann Schulz von Thun is in every German textbook on communication. It states that every message has 4 levels:

  • Factual information
    Facts and data
  • Appeal
    What the sender (speaker) wants to happen
  • Self revelation
    What the sender reveals about themselves – motives, values, emotions
  • Relationship
    How sender and receiver (listener) get along; what the sender thinks of the receiver

With these levels in mind we can have more constructive discussions.

Find the original article by Corinna Baldauf here. The diagram is adapted from this one in Wikipedia.

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  1. Oli 2013/12/15

    download link is incorrect.

    correct link url: http://wall-skills.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/4-Sides-Message_Wall-Skills.pdf

    nice poster! thank you.

  2. corinna 2013/12/15 — Post Author

    Hi Oli!

    Thank you for taking the time to tell us! Fixed now (So awkward…)

    All the best,


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