How many times have you had a conversation with someone and you walked away feeling like everything was understood? Then you find out later, that you and the other person came away with two completely different understandings. It seems so impossible, but it happens every single day. This recently happened to me. I had to re-analyze the conversation to figure out what may have caused this misunderstanding. Think about the number of conversations that you are having every single day in your personal and professional lives. What causes the misunderstandings to occur? There are a few explanations that may cause this to happen.
The first one is to check and see if you are making assumptions? Are you hearing what you want to hear vs what was really said? This is easy to do. You may assume that the person will do what you would do in the situation being discussed. You may not clarify what was said during the conversation because you assume you know what they meant. This is especially true when certain terms are used. You both may have the same understanding of that term’s definition, but it is good to clarify.
The second is did we communicate clearly? It is important to communicate clearly, succinctly and specifically. As I shared in my post yesterday, you may need to start at the beginning of the situation and get everyone on the same page. Some people may also say a lot of words before getting to their point. This is hard for the recipient to follow and understand what point they are making. If you have this tendency, try to be more succinct and recap what your point is so there is no confusion. If the information you are sharing is too vague or you leave out some of the important details, it can also cause confusion. Try to ensure you have complete information in your communication.
The last one is that we may not be really listening to the other person, but instead preparing what we are going to say next. When you are only focused on what you are going to say, then you will miss what is being said. Be an active listener and ensure you have a good understanding of what is being communicated.
At the end of the conversation, confirm that both sides heard and understood the same thing. Ask questions if you need more clarity. Better to clarify at the time of the conversation when it is still fresh in your mind. Improving communications is one of the things that you can continue to work on every day. Watch how others communicate and see if you can learn from what they say, how they say things and the questions that they ask. I have found these practices to be very helpful as I continue to improve my own communications.
Announcement on the ReVISION Program: We have had a great response to the program! Thank you to all who have expressed interest! We have been asked if we could offer it at different times to allow everyone the opportunity to be a part of it.
In order to do that we are moving the start date to February 20th where sessions will be available at Noon (CST) and 7:00pm (CST).
We will also offer an 8:00am on February 21st.
If you haven’t heard about the program yet or would like more information, you can click on this link!