Communication: Five Perilous Assumptions



1. That a message sent is received.

2. That the received message’s intended meaning is understood.

3. That the recipient understands the intended meaning and cares.

4. That the recipient who cares will take appropriate action.

5. That the appropriate action will succeed.

That said, you still have to keep trying while assuming nothing.

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  1. Camilyn on November 15, 2016 at 7:49 am

    A great way to start the day! Thanks for reminding me that communication is meaningful work in itself and not just some byproduct of goals, objectives and metrics.

    • bobmorris on November 15, 2016 at 9:46 am

      Thank you for the encouragement. Much appreciated. I could have added that, when unclear as to another’s intended meaning, it helps to make this request: “Please help me to understand your opinion. If I understand you correctly (and I may not), you believe that [fill in the blank].” Repeating what we are told sends a positive message that we are listening carefully. Also, requesting a response to the request allows another person to clarify. Keep in mind: Everyone is entitled to their own opinion but not to their own facts.”

  2. […] Here are five perilous assumptions about communications that blogger Bob Morris warns against making: The message sent is received; […]

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