Are People Hearing What You’re Saying?

Pastor Nicole Crank - Are People Hearing What You're Saying?
I just made it through airport security by the skin of my teeth, BUT IT WASN’T MY FAULT! Or was it?

As we checked into the ticket counter we were told we didn’t have a ticket. Which is a real problem when you need to get on a flight.

What happened? Because it can’t be MY fault!

When a schedule change came a few weeks earlier that moved our destination after a conference from STL to PBI, we called the church office and asked them to change our ticket.

And they did change our ticket, half of it anyway. The second half. To save money. Because we have communicated that smart stewardship counts.

They asked about the flight route, we confirmed it and by the end of the conversation a new ticket was purchased. Only from the connecting city – not where we were starting. How were we supposed to travel the first leg?

Our office got off the phone a few weeks earlier satisfied that they had done a good job and we got off the phone thinking our travel would be glitch-free.

WRONG! What was said and what was heard were completely different.

If you’re human, and if you are reading this I assume that you are, there are times when we feel like we have clearly communicated our thoughts – and CLEARLY we haven’t.

Whose fault is a miscommunication?

Truly, everyone involved. In our digital world of acronyms and quick emails, the communicator hasn’t taken the time to ask the receiver to repeat back what should happen. Also, the receiver hasn’t drilled down to make sure they have the intent correct.

No one is at fault, but everyone bears responsibility. Not one side.

So how do we handle miscommunications?

With all the grace that we will want when we feel like we have done what was asked of us. And all of the grace that we would want when we feel like we have done everything we could to say what we meant clearly.

How do we miscommunicate less?

As the receiver, don’t feel bad repeating back how you heard the information. It will just make you look good as you deliver the right results the first time, every time.
As the communicator – for clarity, take a moment to have what you want accomplished repeated back to you. That way you get what you want, when you want it.

And you aren’t stuck in an airport hoping to make your flight. Gotta go, it’s time to board!!!

Have some communication tricks to help us out? Share them!!!

6 Responses

  1. Johnna

    This is exactly what I have to do in my own household. I have 4 teenage boys at home and this is helpful because it keeps me from getting frustrated. They always have to repeat my directions back to me or someone isn’t getting picked up from practice Or eating!

  2. Angie Jones

    Communication is so key and it is important to include everyone in the communication. I sometimes even forget what nonverbal communication says…improving communication leads to the ability to reach higher levels. : )

  3. Randy Reinwald

    Sometimes.when I speak I know it in my head but have not actually communicated the idea. I’ve caught myself doing this be writing my instruction and reviewing for clarity. Many times I omit key information that I only thought I had said. I find that writing information down which involves three actions, hand writing, listening, and asking for clarification is the best way to get precisely what people desire. This is the problem with direct instruction w/o feedback. Have a safe trip.

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