January 5, 2010

What Gets Said vs. What Gets Heard

What Gets Said vs. What Gets Heard I’ve been on the edge of a few different situations lately at work where what seems like a very clear (even by objective standards) conversation ends up with two very different understandings down the road.  This is the problem I’d characterize as “What gets said isn’t necessarily what gets heard.”  More often than not, this is around delivering bad news, but there are other use cases as well.  Imagine these three fictitious examples: Edward was surprised he got fired, even though his manager said he gave him repeated warnings and performance feedback Jacob thought his assignment was to write a proposal and get it out the door before a deadline, but his manager thought the assignment was to schedule a brainstorming meeting with all internal stakeholders to get everyone on the same page before finalizing the proposal Bella gets an interim promotion – she still needs to prove herself for 90 days in the new job before the promotion is permanent and there is a comp adjustment – then gets upset when the “email to all” mentions that she is “acting” Why does this happen?  There are probably two main causes, each with […]