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Communication Mistake To Avoid – Part 2

Livia Jenvey |  July 9, 2018

In the continuation of the four communication mistakes to avoid, last week we discussed the first common mistake: Expecting Others To Know What You’re Thinking 

This week we will dive into the next big one: Assume They Know The Basics.  This means, what may be basic for you, may not be the basic style of conversion for others.  Let’s dive into this in detail, to get the full understanding how this communication mistake gets often underlooked.

A perfect example where this happens is in daily staff meetings.  These meetings you may possibly do often during the week, wherein an unspoken agenda of discussing the top priorities items first, then getting into areas you will be working on next.  You may have been doing this same format for years in various groups you have either been managing or in which you are being managed.

The challenge comes, when you start to work with a new individuals and you assume they know this basic style of doing daily staff meetings.  When you start your meetings, you expect they will give you the set unspoken agenda format you are assuming they know to give.  However every organization is different, even groups within the organization could be completely different in how they structure daily staff meetings. 

Thus a way to not assume each new person to your group  knows this is the basic way a daily staff meeting is conducted, tell them up front when the meeting starts.  This guarantees you are setting the precedence of how these meetings are run.   If this new person already knows this, they will acknowledge yes this is standard for them. If this is new to them, this will also let them know that this is how the meeting is done. 

The best analogy I like to give to my clients, is to think of every new person is a new player on your playing field.  New players must understand the rules of the game to play well.  This even before they start, give them the ground rules to makes sure they know where the boundaries exist to keep them from playing out of bounds. This also makes sure, you don’t have to spend extra time fixing things when they didn’t know they were going out of bounds.

Remember this the next time you are going to be communicating with someone new.  Assuming others might have standard communication as you do in meetings may not be the case. Letting others know the ground rules will avoid this communication mistake.


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