Replace Your Assumptions (with questions)
A recent client of mine assumed his colleague didn’t respect him because she failed to show up for a scheduled Zoom conference.
When he put aside the assumption, he tried asking: “How are you?” “What’s happening?”
By replacing assumptions with questions, my client learned his colleague was experiencing challenges that prevented her from letting him know she had to miss the Zoom.
Another client assumed a team member was failing because he kept missing deadlines. She replaced her assumption with questions: “How are the reports coming along?” “How can I support you?”
My client learned there were issues with data collection from another division causing her team member to do double-work. Yet again, replacing assumptions with questions led to better understanding.
An assumption stops communication.
Questions invite communication.
Let’s replace our assumptions with questions.