Ever notice how sometimes someone totally misunderstands what you told (or wrote) them? I mean, jeez, what do you have to do, spell it out for them?
Usually couldn’t hurt.
My most recent reminder of this difficulty was an email I sent off to my web designer for a refresh of the site’s Home page. I wanted to shift some features around and add some more helpful stuff for my visitors. I laid out my thoughts in bullet points and attached a couple of mock-ups of what the Home page could look like. In return, I got an email asking me what changes I wanted to make on my blog page and did I want to create another page for the links and apps. Uh…
It’s not an uncommon thing. Most of us are so clear in our head on what we are looking for that we think we’re asking or telling something clearly when we actually leave out critical bits of information without which the person we’re talking to may be anywhere from confused to totally clueless on what we’re talking about.
This used to happen a lot during my time in Corporate America as a result of too many bosses giving too little training to employees and getting too few results of what they were looking for. Almost always in those cases, the bosses were convinced the fault was the employees.
Communicating effectively is a skill, possibly an art, and it takes thought and patience. I’ve sent another email to my web designer with clear instructions that should end with a more productive conversation over website changes. I’m confident there won’t be any confusion this time. Not after the re-write of my requests.
After all, it’s obvious what I want!