Sometime Never Comes

April 7, 2013 § Leave a comment

Who makes the statement, “let’s get together sometime” and really means it?  If the invitation was sincere, it would not be for “sometime”, but for a specific date or specific date options. Being too general and non-specific will only lead to frustration for everyone involved.

Just the other day I asked someone in the office if they would start on a project “sometime soon”.  As it turns out, the other person thought I meant to start when they got around to it.  You guessed it.  They hadn’t gotten around to it yet.  I didn’t realize my communication error until I followed up with that person a few days later for a progress report.

I have thought of 4 simple ways to make sure that “sometime” DOES come.

  1. Be clear with your communication of due dates.  Use specific date/time references.
  2. If communication is verbal, make sure you follow it up with an email or a confirmation phone call.
  3. If a colleague uses the “sometime” due date, make sure you ask for a specific date.
  4. If a colleague simply says they will do something with no due date, make sure you get a specific date for this too.

Too often people assume clarity has been conveyed when in reality it has not.  Assumptions take over, deadlines are doomed and disappointment is inevitable.I am certain I am not alone in this experience.  I would love to hear your experiences in this area of sometime. How did you deal with it?

Keep your eyes open. Inspiration can come from anywhere.

This post was inspired by my recent personal offense of wanting something done “sometime”. 

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Are You In Control?

March 17, 2012 § Leave a comment

In all areas of our lives, both personal and professional, it is very important to retain control. When people say things they don’t intend, they have lost control. 

I tend to think less about being in control and more about being intentional. There are situations where it is important to be pleasant and other situations where it is important to be firm. Knowing when to use the correct emotion and response is being intentional. Actually using the intended emotion and response is retaining control.
 
Keep your eyes open. Inspiration can come from anywhere.

This post was inspired by a LinkedIn Group post from Chris Tompkins, CEO at Go! Media International.

Unwritten Rules

August 8, 2011 § Leave a comment

“That is one of those unwritten rules”. How many times have you heard a former Major League player and current announcer make this claim? As many people know, baseball has dozens of unwritten rules, maybe even hundreds. Don’t admire your home run shot too long. You can slide in hard to second base to break up a double play, but don’t go in with your cleats up. And my favorite, non pitchers cannot walk across the pitchers mound. All of these unwritten rules make the play unclear to some on the field and most off the field.

If you want people to perform at a very high level, whether it is on the baseball field or at your organization, rules cannot be “unwritten”. “Unwritten Rules” tend to be very vague and unclear. Clarity is paramount. How many times have directions been given and the person goes off and does something completely different? The most likely reason is due to unclear directions.

Be clear. Be concise. Repeat.

Keep your eyes open.  Inspiration can come from anywhere.

I was inspired by a blog post from Marlon Byrd, center fielder for the Chicago Cubs, about the unwritten rules of baseball.

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