Personal Effectiveness – The Assumption Trap

We make assumptions every moment of every day, we have to and it’s normal. You see, the problem isn’t that we make them, the problem is we confuse assumptions with facts or truths and they become blind spots in our personal effectiveness  that lead to unintended consequences!  As I recently discovered for myself .

In my house we have a particular bedtime routine that involves my partner and I reading stories to each of our children, the first one to finish makes the dinner.

One evening we were both following the bedtime routine to the letter; as I read stories with my daughter, my partner was next door doing the same with my son whom generally took a lot longer to settle in the evening.

As I finished reading to my daughter I tiptoed past my sons room, where my partner was putting him to bed and I crept down stairs to get a start on dinner. Low and behold the cupboards were bare so I made a quick shopping list, left a note to my partner and jumped in the car – off I went to the supermarket.

I was casually browsing up and down the aisles, thoughtfully selecting items and putting them in the trolley when I noticed someone walking towards me pushing a trolley half full of items who bared an uncanny resemblance to my partner!

Did you spot the  fatal assumption that each of us made?

Fortunately on this occasion there were no unintended consequences and both children were fast asleep and none the wiser. It was such a good example of how an innocuous assumption could have led to some pretty serious consequences.

What assumptions are you making about others, your environment, your competitors that might be based on completely flawed data? Worth checking out, don’t you think?

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  • Mads

    A wise man once said “never assume anything” ;)
    Good post though! I just did a post myself on Personal Effectiveness around simple financial aspects.

    Kind Regards
    Mads

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