Jane writes: I got a new mobile phone this week and bravely faced the challenge of syncing my email account. There was a lot of growling as I attempted to follow the instructions, and then I went to the O2 shop for help. After accurately assessing my abilities someone there sorted it all out for me.
Do you get frustrated when you don’t understand what someone’s trying to tell you – even though they’re speaking the same language as you? I often ask them to explain their point again – and then still don’t get it. How can this happen?
For me it may be that they are giving me the detail when I need the heart of the message (the ‘so what?’). For others it may be that they are being given the heart of the message without any evidence to support it (‘convince me’). It’s all about difference. We have different preferences about how we receive information, different ways of processing it, and different styles when we give it. Understanding these differences can help us to adapt when this will help achieve a better result for us and for others. Adapting appropriately can save a lot of time trying to resolve ‘misunderstandings’. Learning how to ask others to adapt some of the time to help you understand them better is also useful.
Think about it…”
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