A question good leaders ask!

Is there anything I said that is wrong or misstated?

Andrew Cuomo, Governor of New York

The above quote came during a daily press conference on New York’s response to the COVID19 pandemic. It is a question that good leaders ask.

As leaders, we know what we are trying to say. How we say it makes sense to us. What we don’t know is how others hear what we say.

I’m reminded of the basic communication model I learned in undergrad. There is a sender, a receiver and interference. The sender communicates a message to a receiver. As that message floats through the air between sender and receiver, it encounters interference (the sum of a person’s experience, education, beliefs, etc., etc.). This means that what the sender says and what the receiver hears and understands can be two different things.

That’s a long way of saying that misunderstandings happen.

How do leaders respond to this reality? By checking with those we are communicating with, to make sure that what they hear is what we intend.

Is there anything I said that is wrong or misstated?

Experiment with adding that question – or one like it – to your communication! You might be surprised what you learn!

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