Lots of communication stories came up at our last Heart to Heart meeting. A group of women talking about business and life all on the same wave length, communicating stories of miscommunication. That doesn’t really make sense, but I have the stories to prove it.
Our big January snowstorm in Seattle caused lots of power outages. Deborah and her partner live a heavily wooded area north of Seattle. During the storm, she heard trees popping and saw bright lights in the distance. Then, their generator roared to life. They have a generator because the power goes out so frequently. Lots of trees and no buried power lines are not conducive for a continuous flow of electricity. Winter in Seattle is one storm after another roaring in off the Pacific, taking out trees.
They were cozy in their house, the coffee brewing, the TV on. Then the cable went out. Deborah called the cable company. She said, “Our cable’s out”. The cable customer service rep said,” You’ve got no power”. Deborah said again,” Our cable is out”, and again the cable customer service rep did not connect the dots saying, “But you’ve got no power”. Finally, Deborah added some words, “Our generator is working so we have power but our cable is out”. Then the cable customer service rep tells Deborah the cable will be out for 2-3 days. They had to use their cell phones to reply to emails, a little difficult. I guess cable isn’t buried everywhere.
Sometimes, communication problems stem from mispronunciation. I remember I couldn’t say the word, work, when I was young. In fact, I still have difficulty with it. Jan’s daughter reminded her of an incident many years ago, as they talked about their Girl Scout adventures. When Phoebe was 5, she helped sell Girl Scout cookies outside the local grocery store. An older, well dressed woman asked the cost and what type of payment. One the girls said cash. Then Phoebe piped up and said, “We take sex, too”. The woman said “what”? Phoebe happily repeated, “We take sex, too”. The woman looked startled and confused and Jan stepped in. Jan explained Phoebe couldn’t pronounce the “ch” sound. Phoebe meant “We take checks, too”.
I’d love to hear your communication faux pas’.