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Being Clear and Specific Won’t Leave Trash in Your House

April 17, 2014
Photo credit: Wesley Fryer, flickr

Photo credit: Wesley Fryer, flickr

 

My fourteen-year-old son has chores around the house, and one of those chores is taking out the trash. When he was first given this responsibility, I told him, “Please take out the trash before I get home.” He said, “Okay Mom, I got it.” When I arrived home, I looked around, and the trash was still in the house. I called for him and said, “Son, didn’t I ask you to take out the trash before I got home?” He said, “Yes, and I did. I took out the kitchen trash.” Since there are trash cans around the house (bathrooms, bedrooms, laundry room, etc.), my expectation was not met because I failed to be clear and specific.

Being clear and specific in how you state a request will determine whether your expectations are met. In our minds, we are clear about the outcome we are looking for, but when we are vague or unspecific, that leaves others to interpret our requests or directions. When that happens, you are at the mercy of the other person’s interpretation. Clarity is the hallmark of results.

 

Nycci Parsons, Learning Engineer, Nelnet Partner Solutions

Nycci Parsons, Learning Engineer, Nelnet Partner Solutions

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