Communication is first. Lessons Learned

Public Lesson Learned Entry: 0001 – 07.24.2013

What event drove this learning process?

An email from a senior manager which denoted quite some stress and uncertainty due to not knowing the status of a process (which I knew).

What is the lesson learned?

I thought about writing this manager an email to inform her about the status of said process. I didn’t have all the variables but at least I knew that I had had a phone call informing me the status, which I thought it would be good to communicate. I didn’t send an email or called and let the whole weekend pass. Monday morning I received an email from her asking me about the status and inquiring about dates. I had to reply and on my reply I couldn’t hide the fact I had known for some days. The email had to be written carefully and include some additional actions to prevent any personal-brand damage.

What to do about it:

  • Be the first to communicate, don’t let their stress build up until they have to call you (keep the ball on your side).
  • Don’t rely on or wait for third parties to communicate your message. Most of the times it will get truncated, edited, misunderstood or delayed.
  • If you have the info that needs to be communicated, send it. If you don’t, let them know promptly.
  • Communicate efficiently, clearly and sharply.
  • Realize that it’s never too late to send the message. Apologize if necessary, then send it.
  • If there’s anything that you want to say, say it. Think about how you’re gonna say it, but say it.
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