Tag Archives: Communication

Say vs Ask vs Tell

When we “say” something, it is not as important that someone heard it. But when we “ask” for someone for something or “tell” someone something, it is necessary that the “someone” heard what we asked for or what you told them.

– manzoor


Mis Communication

I have mentioned this to many of my friends over the years – my manager, Bill, at one of my earlier jobs told be once – communication is a 2 way street. When you tell someone something, you should verify that he heard what you meant to communicate. And vice versa, i.e., when you hear something, verify that what you heard was what the communicator meant.

Anyway, this morning I went to one of my coffee places and as I stood at the counter I said something like, “I’ve had your latte and also your cappuccino, how about I try your cortado today”. the guys behind the counter even asked me if I wanted the “Seltzer water” and I said “sure”. We continue talk about what else I might want, i.e., something to eat maybe, and I respond that I was not really wanting any “food” right now and was going to stick the coffee. Maybe I’ll get some coffee a little later.

He tells me what I owe, of course I don’t pay attention to the total but sign and head to the patio outside with my laptop. A few minutes later I go find out that he got me 3 coffees (and he forgot the seltzer water). It didn’t take me long to figure out what had happened and to notice where I went wrong 😦 I let Bill, and all my friends I had repeated his teaching to, down – again.

In addition to letting my friends down I also spent way more on my morning coffee than I meant to, not to mention I had 2 extra coffee that I had not meant to. Worse than the extra coffees was the fact that the beverages came in to-go / paper cups because I am sure he assumed that since I ordered 3 I must have meant I wanted to them to-go, even though I said I wanted them for there – this part I know I did communicate because he did repeat it back to me when I ordered.

– manzoor

2 Way

We don’t realize this but most things in life are bi-directional. Communication, relationship are 2 that comes to mind off the top.

When we communicate we often pay more attention to what we say and what we hear and not enough on what the other is saying or maybe hearing. Just because I say something does not guarantee that the other heard the same.

Relationships are even more complicated. We all know it takes “give” and “take” in all relationships. What we sometimes fail to realize is how skewed our perception of “give” and “take” are. If we were “machines” and not “human”, what we “gave” would be exactly what the other “took”. But since we are human beings, what we give is way bigger than what the other got. Just like what we “took” is so much smaller than what the other “gave”. This comes from our own bias.

But it is quite surprising that so many relationships do work out, while so many don’t. There isn’t necessarily any magic recipe that causes some to work out.

All happy people are happy the same way. Every sad person is sad in their own unique way.

I don’t really agree. I think every happiness, every sadness, every each emotion is unique. They cannot be duplicated or replicated. They can be imitated to some extent.

– manzoor

Bangla on the Net

I’ve thought about writing in Bangla on the net, i.e., e-mails / blogs etc, but been too lazy to make an effort. I ought to.

BTW, I want to do it, not because I don’t know English (which I do, to a degree) – but because Bangla is still my natural language and I “think” in Bangla. And I communicate with mostly people in that same category.

I shared this opinion on a friends’ FB status and somehow, and quite abruptly, the thread turned into “Bangla vs English”.

My idea of using Bangla as a Language was not meant to be a political stand or anything like that. Bangla happens to be primary language and a lot of the people I communicate with on the net come from similar background as mine. So, communicating in Bangla just is a natural choice. Or so it seems to me.

I am quite confident that Bangla will survive and strive for a long time, just like it has done for so long. Both the language and the culture is rich enough to do this. Neither needs me, but I need both (the language and the culture). They, and my religion, my philosophy, my beliefs etc together define who I am.

Just as Bangla in a part of me, so is English. But while Bangla is near and dear to me – English is a necessity and a convenience. Being able to communicate in English has allowed me to come to the US and establish a life for me and my family. But learning English it in the first place was a choice.

– manzoor