What is the most important thing you NEVER learned in school?


Charles McCrumb Small Business IT Project Analyst, Office Automation Expert Herbert, McCrumb & Associates
Charles McCrumb
Small Business IT Project Analyst, Office Automation Expert
Herbert, McCrumb & Associates

This post is purely for discussion. What is the most important thing NOT being taught in an academic environment? I would really love to hear your comments!

Cheers! ūüėé

Charles McCrumb, Office Automation Expert
Herbert, McCrumb & Associates
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Communication: Part 3


Charles McCrumb Small Business IT Project Analyst, Office Automation Expert Herbert, McCrumb & Associates
Charles McCrumb
Small Business IT Project Analyst, Office Automation Expert
Herbert, McCrumb & Associates

Sun Tzu, in The Art of War¬†writes: “If words of command are not clear and distinct, if orders are not thoroughly understood, the general is to blame. But if his orders are clear, and the soldiers nevertheless disobey, then it is the fault of their officers.”

Are your subordinates or peers guessing at what you are saying¬†or¬†writing? Is most of the dialogue in your head and you only let people in on the last sentence or paragraph? It’s CRITICAL that your communication be COMPLETELY¬†clear from the top–>down, bottom–>up, and side–>side.

Lost information not only leads to FRUSTRATION, it can lead to major issues in production, service provision, and hard feelings all around!

Over the years, I’ve adopted several technologies for communication (email, instant messaging, text, phone), but for¬†REALLY transparent communication, face to face is always, Always,¬†ALWAYS¬†superior. We are programmed from birth to recognize faces (a big reason that we see faces on Mars, burnt into our toast, in sprinkler patterns on the side of buildings, etcetera).

Facial expressions, (unless the person is severely autistic) mean the world to us, and can communicate volumes beyond what can be gleaned from a text or email, or even a phone call where you can hear the inflections in a person’s voice. When communicating, ALWAYS put it in this order: In-Person (so you can see-hear, it also shows that you REALLY CARE about the person [enough to travel a reasonable distance to see him/her personally], honestly it’s REALLY APPRECIATED!), Phone (so that the person can at least hear your voice, and you can hear what they say as well). Instant Messaging / Text (somehow because it’s instantaneous, it’s more personal). E-Mail (it’s¬†the lowest modern form of communication, yet in the marketing sense, you get the most hits from it. Possibly because everyone makes time for it [usually the wrong amount of time, that’s another post], Go figure).

If you really must send an actual hand-written letter, (on some level, it’s really an honor. I still have several hand-written notes from my grandmother {wonderful stuff!}). On another level there’s no help for you. If you have 500 – 1000 people you need to stay in touch with (and YOU¬†NEED TO!), then that’s roughly between 8 and 14¬†people that you need to write (at least a short note to) EVERY SINGLE DAY!!! 8¬†x 7 days / week x 52 = 5500 – 11,000 individual¬†contacts each year. Your hands are going to HURT!

SPEAK UP and SPEAK CLEARLY!
I cannot emphasize this enough. If you cannot be understood, you will make ZERO impact, even though you may have thought and said the most brilliant thing in history.

Years ago, I worked with a fellow in the finance department that would come into the server room (these days a no-no, but then not-so-much), and immediately start mumbling. I would (upon hearing the mumble), state: “Hey! Mumbles Magoo! You’re going to have to raise the volume, it’s NOISY in here!”

It was!¬†The air conditioning (on high!), network switches, router, SonicWALL, Dell servers, IBM iSeries 520 server, 3 workstations, etc., 10+¬†fans just a’ blowin’ and machine / factory sounds!
NOISE CITY!!!

My big point in this post is: You must communicate often (to your contacts, at the very least, quarterly, to your subordinates and peers at work, you must be the king/queen of frequent communication), and you must be ABSOLUTELY CLEAR in your communication (with EVERY SINGLE MESSAGE)!

Cheers! ūüėé

Charles McCrumb, Office Automation Expert
Herbert, McCrumb & Associates
Visit us at http://www.hm-associates.com
Like us on Facebook for instant updates on what Herbert, McCrumb & Associates is doing, how we’re doing it, and how we’re saving real people time and money!
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email: charles@hm-associates.com
Skype: charles.mccrumb
Bus: (626) 593-6700

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