This after­noon, I sat in a tele­con­fer­enced work­shop about how to com­mu­ni­cate with finesse and tact. I don’t know if I learned any­thing or if I will be a bet­ter com­mu­ni­ca­tor; I guess time will tell. I did notice some­thing though that made me won­der what kind of per­son I am.

Among the pages of the work­book we had to print out pri­or to the work­shop was a quad­rant chart. Along the top was “open”, along the bot­tom was “closed”, and “direct” and “indi­rect” were on the left and right respec­tive­ly.

As the speak­er con­tin­ued with this part of her pre­sen­ta­tion, I real­ized the exam­ples she had on the left and right quad­rants were trans­posed: the two on the bot­tom and top right should have been on the left, and the two on the bot­tom and top left should have been on the right.

Over the next 5 – 10 min­utes, every­one else in the room picked up on the error. Now here comes the inter­est­ing part.

As far as I could tell, every­one in the room fixed it by pre­fix­ing “direct” with “in” and remov­ing “in” from “indi­rect”. When I looked at my chart, I had used arrows to indi­cate each exam­ple should be on the oppo­site side.

So what does that say about me that I made my change graph­i­cal­ly while every­one else in the room did it by edit­ing words on the page?

About Kim Siever

I am a copy­writer and copy­ed­i­tor. I blog on writ­ing tips most­ly, but I some­times throw in my thoughts about run­ning a small busi­ness.

Fol­low me on Twit­ter at @hotpepper.

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