This is the last installment of my Elements of Communication series, where I talk about the importance of communication in a relationship – or any interaction, for that matter. Here are all of the elements so you can always reference them:
Element #1 – Having an Opinion
Element #2 – Being Willing to Give Space & Trust
Element #3 – Listening
Element #4 – Telling the Truth
Element #5 – Actually Communicating
Very typical of me to produce such profound observations, huh?
This actually was inspired by a sequence of events that happened the other day. At my second job, there was a miscommunication between two co-workers of mine in determining the schedule – specifically my schedule – for this week. The miscommunication? Well, the base of it all is that no one communicated. I was told one story, that they were going to follow-up with me and confirm.
When I showed up for what was supposed to be my first workday of the week, I was greeted with blank stare and question clouds over people’s heads. So, being screwed over, in terms of hours, they try to remedy the situation, only to find out the next day that I have been scheduled to work in more than one location.
A couple of days later, I may have received well over 10 calls from 4 different people about the situation when I had nothing to do with the screw up. Everyone was talking to wrong people and it almost seemed like they were looking for someone to blame – namely me. Of course, I don’t tolerate that nonsense but to wrap up story, the hammer was dropped, those who messed up were given a talking to and I ended up working at the right location.
I’ll also briefly get into how planning the rest of the week went with these guys with the following line.
It was a disaster.
But anyway, the point here is not talk about my other job. I like working there and my co-workers are awesome. I just feel like they lack a very important quality when it comes to teamwork and, in this case, building and maintaining relationships.
The ability to actually communicate.
None of this would have happened if someone picked up the phone and talked to someone. Sounds vague but honestly, if one person called me or someone else who was involved or another person called the other person, everything would have been resolved.
When it comes to relationships, we have it SO easy these days.
We can call someone. Seems like most people don’t do that much anymore.
We can send a quick text. 10 seconds of your time and can save hours of worry. I am victim of forgetting this myself when it comes to letting certain people know of my whereabouts.
We can email. Another quick thing we can do to keep the communication lines open. Takes minimal time and just a few clicks. Probably one of the laziest but acceptable forms of communication.
We can tweet. Yup, I said it. It was reached the point now that public tweeting can be an acceptable method to let people know what’s up with you.
The important thing in the end is that we make an attempt to actually communicate. If we just stand around with our fingers in our ear and not try to say what we really mean, then how do you expect people to understand you? This is very important especially in disagreements or agruments. You have to be able to communicate how you feel in order for the other person to even get a sense of where you are coming from - whether your thinking is irrational or not. If you care enough, I urge you to give them the decency of saying something.
Maintain a flow of communication with people and watch how your relationships will progress. Sometimes, all it takes is a little reaching out.
I had a lot of fun developing this series and if you’d like me to talk about certain things, don’t hesitate to leave a comment or shoot me an email at the top of the page.
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