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Thursday, 18 July 2013

Effective communication - just like we had with Ted!


The bear on the right was given to me on my brother's birth when I was three, and his pal joined him in my teens (a present from my first ever boyfriend).

There was a time when I told my teddy bear everything. Each night I'd lay there in bed telling Ted about all my adventures - if he hadn't come with me to share in them that is. There wasn't anything I didn't tell Ted - he knew when I was happy, sad and excited. He knew of my plans for the future and was there every night as I hugged him as I fell asleep and I'm sure even knew of my dreams.

How times change. Whilst I do still have Ted (which makes him 47 and three quarters) - he knows nothing of my life other than the occasional spin in the washing machine every 10 years or so when I think he's looking a little dusty.

Isn't that what communication in many businesses is like? We start very keen and everyone knows everything and slowly over time as the dust settles we tell ourselves:
  • they wouldn't want to know
  • it's not of interest to them
  • they don't need to know that
and then as times passes and the moths appear and other excuses are used
  • why should I tell them that
  • they'll just try to change the decision
  • I don't have time
  • it doesn't matter
  • it will be easier to just tell them after the event
Not one of these is ever true - you can never over communicate. Although as a communication manager in a procurement team, before I started working for myself 8 years ago, I would accept there are right and wrong ways of communicating (more of that in a future blog).

How might your communication have become like mine with Ted? What steps can you take to get it back to the good old days? If you need any help let me know.

Alison Smith
Inspiring change inside and out - in procurement and business more widely

PS: I've also written about effective communication in the past - I'm sure it won't be the last!

Blog 16/31 in July for the Ultimate Blog Challenge.

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