Communication is something everyone must have but at times it fails. Actually, it’s not the communication that fails, but the people who do the communicating.
The other day, Cyndi had an appointment with her doctor in Temple at 10:30. We arrived just in time for her to get inside and sign in. She was told, however, her appointment was at 3:45. Who changed her appointment? When did they change it? Did someone fail to tell her? Did they contact her and she forgot about it? I’m not sure we’ll ever know the answer to this but, somewhere along the line communication was poor.
Here are some ways we may fail to communicate. First, we may tell someone to pass on information and then assume that person followed through with it. The truth is, that person never told the information to another. They forgot that.
Secondly, we may take for granted the person already knows but, they are totally unaware. I had an instructor who told us, "Never underestimate the ignorance of your audience." He was not calling the audience ignorant. He was telling us that when we preach (or speak) we may assume they know everything we do, when in fact they do not. It takes some explanation to lay the foundation-communication.
Thirdly, we the listener, do not register what was said. We may be thinking of a project we’re working on or a problem has arisen that has captured our thoughts. We may hear some words spoken—but they do not register with us. Have you ever been guilty?
Another reason is because we may be losing our hearing and do not realize something was said. We may have heard part of the conversation but missed out on some important information. I wonder if this is how rumors are started?
As you can see, there may be many reasons why we communicate poorly. We must do a better job of this in our lives. Let’s not let others speak for us but give the information directly. Let’s not assume someone already knows what we are talking about. Let’s make sure we listen to others when they speak and if possible, write the information down. If we have trouble hearing something lets not act as if we do but ask them to repeat it. When we do these things we will be communicating.