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for advisers and leaders in financial advice

  • Writer's pictureJason Dunn


If we all speak the same language how is it we have so much trouble communicating?

Good question.

There are many examples of poor communication in our everyday lives and of course in business and professional services. And there are just as many reasons why we fail to consistently communicate effectively.

In my last Adviser Best Practice Action, I wrote about assumptions. And assumptions, wrong ones, are a major cause of miscommunication.

It may be that we assume the person we are trying to communicate with understands the context and intent of what we are discussing, but in fact, they are on a completely different page. Vagaries in language and the vocabulary we use are major contributing factors to miscommunication but it’s more often our misconceptions (read: assumptions) about the other person’s understanding of our meaning.

Given that we are all speaking English, it is reasonable to assume that we share a common understanding of the meaning of words, but that is not always the case.

Great, large, comfortable, secure, successful, in fact, many words (particularly adjectives) can be considered subjective and the understanding of their meaning to others can vary considerably based on someone’s personal history, experiences, or precedents.

“Getting a bigger boat” can have a range of meanings…

“Having a comfortable retirement” means different things to everyone.

To ensure you are communicating effectively choose your language carefully and always be aware of your level of shared understanding with your clients and prospects.

Developing exceptional communication skills is core a component and focus of our GROW Adviser Capability program

Keep an eye out for my next article:

“How to communicate effectively”

What examples do you have of miscommunication with clients or prospects, and how did you know?

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