I’m not on LinkedIn very much but when I do, sometimes people talk to me or want to be one of my connections. I don’t blame them. They see me as a writer and see I have potential.
But recently I got into a conversation with a guy who needed a little bit of guidance in the ways of conversing in business.
He talked about his company that he’s running (a writing and web building company) and then finished off with:
“I’d like to hear your thoughts.”
I have nothing wrong with him asking for my thoughts, however how he went about it was very confusing.
Did he want my thoughts on his typing abilities?
Did he want my thoughts on the company itself and the services he is providing?
Did he want my thoughts on how competitive this idea is?
Does he want my thoughts on how to better manage his company?
None of that at all.
He wanted to know if I was interested in outsourcing my work load through his company.
I figured that out after I asked him how any of his speech pertains to me.
It’s not very often I get these, but I feel like a lot of entrepreneurs are afraid to take the leap.
I haven’t run into this issue myself.
Probably because I’ve been reading so many people who take leaps. They’re not vague about what they want.
That or my goal setting skills have trained me to stop being so vague and cryptic. Or perhaps a combination.
Either way, when you are asking someone for something, be direct.
The guy I talked to today was a little direct but still pretty vague. I could interpret his message in a variety of ways.
I was actually hoping he was looking for more people to hire. It is LinkedIn after all.
Regardless, when you are not direct, the message can often get confused. Much like a game of telephone, you have the one guy or girl who interprets the message incorrectly. That or the kid really wanted to fuck it all up and give you a completely different message. Either way when you aren’t communicating properly things get messed up.
It’s not the guys fault for being so vague though. He didn’t know and may have his own reasons.
I know people from different countries have different customs of how they conduct business. In a sense, it can be a bit of a culture shock when dealing with foreigners.
That being said, I believe when it is time to discuss business, you are direct, customs or not.
I think that it’s important now more than ever before as we are connecting with the world at large. We need to quickly adapt and be familiar with others customs to a degree. Regardless, I think it’s important to have this sense of directness as you become aware of what the person is intending.
Often times we think when people want to conduct business we are quick to setting expectations.
Like myself. I was thinking I was going to get hired for something as opposed to being sold something.
I’m not hurt or sad, but those feelings lingered throughout the conversation. For others, those expectations could hurt people more emotionally.
This is why being direct helps.
You’re not vague and not leaving the person to guess or presume certain things. They know exactly what you want to be getting out of this conversation.
Simple as that.
To your growth!
Eric S Burdon
Yesterday was another day filled with writing. By juggling my client work, I’ve been able to stay on track and focus on finishing a variety of tasks that needed my attention.
I’m getting a good flow of things and feel like I’m making a lot of progress in a number of areas. I am happy with where things are going.
For now though, it’s a matter of biding my time and setting aside some time for more planning my next moves.
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