CONFIRM EVERYTHING

Photo Credit: Prescilla de Preez

We have seemingly endless ways to communicate with friends, family, and coworkers. Between email, texts, FaceTime, Facebook, and other “face-related” methods, it’s no longer the tools that hold us back as they did when the Pony Express was your only option.

The communication problems we face today come more from what we say (or don’t say) than how we get the message to the other person. Text-based methods are easy, cheap, and fast, but so much is lost in translation without the ability to see subtle facial expressions or hear the inflections in another’s voice. I firmly believe so many arguments online, political or otherwise, could have been avoided if each party could have heard those statements instead of misunderstanding jokes or sarcasm for serious comments.

All of this is to say that being very clear about your intentions and meanings and confirming your statements can make a big difference in the effectiveness of your communication. If you plan to meet a friend for lunch but don’t confirm that you received their message about the time, you may be eating alone if that friend never knew you were on board.

I know some people hate the reply “K” because it feels like the other person gave the least amount of effort but in reality, I’d say no response at all is the least amount of effort, and “K” is better than nothing. It’s often better to be overly communicative than to make assumptions.

When you speak, speak clearly. When you text, be responsive. When you email, be courteous and professional, and when you comment on Facebook/YouTube/Reddit, be a human being.