“The biggest difficulty we have,” Susan insisted, “is communication.”
I nodded. “How so?”
“Well, sometimes it seems we are not even on the same team. I give instructions, I hold meetings, but when somebody has to coordinate with someone else, it always seems like the ball gets dropped.”
“What do you think the problem is?” I asked.
“It seems that when I do the talking, there’s not a lot of listening.”
“And that surprises you?” I smiled.
“No. But, as the manager, I expect my team to listen when I talk to them,” Susan shook her from side to side, impatiently.
“Oh, so this is your team’s fault?”
Susan was no dummy. She sensed I was setting her up. “Well, okay, I know I am 50 percent to blame,” she relented.
“And what would you do differently, if I told you that you were 100 percent accountable for your team’s complete understanding? You, as the manager, are 100 percent responsible for the effectiveness of the communication. What would you do differently?”