Don’t you sometimes assume that something will happen, but in the end the total opposite does? Assumptions are made when you don’t fully understand a situation in your life. It could be financial, health, fitness, education or food related, it doesn’t really have a category, but it has a will of its own. Assumptions get a lot of people in trouble and then they want to know why it happened, or why that person didn’t do their job.
Well let me use an example.
Next month your company will be launching its latest product for the Apple iPad, a brand new voice activated docking station. The problem is that you have 24 days till launch, but 101 things to finish before then. Did I forget to mention you are the CEO of the company, so you will obviously have to oversee everything? Okay, so now that you know the position you are holding, it’s time to look at this in a broader spectrum. You have to output the product and there are 10 different departments that have to handle the product before its completion.
Now the problem comes in when you start assuming that certain people will do their jobs without you checking up on them. Sure, they do get paid to work, but not all of them always follow as closely on certain things as you do. So let’s say you gave the marketing department some orders to give the press a call and book a room for launch day and write a full press release for the product. If you just assume that they will be finished before launch day without you checking up on them, you could be in for a nasty surprise. (I’m not saying they won’t do their work.)
The day has finally arrived for you to release your product to the public and it’s time for a press conference. The world has to see this amazing docking station you know. When you arrive at your venue there is a little problem though…no press has shown up, no press releases have been written and there wasn’t a conference room booked. Who actually gets blamed for this? Did you follow up with the teams behind the marketing aspect of the product? Were you sure that they actually made the phone calls to book the press? Did you have a press release in your hand before the day of launch? Now you see this actually all comes down to you in the end. You made an assumption that they will do their work and that you wouldn’t need to check up on them. Big mistake isn’t it?
The example I used above however isn’t your regular assumptions that are made in business, usually the CEO will make sure everything is done a week before hand and everything is confirmed and ready. These things do happen though and it usually occurs when the people get lazy and distracted.
Most assumptions in business are made on the financial side of things. Predictions, estimates etc though.
Now I haven’t really been very convincing in this article, nor have I actually made a point yet. So let’s look at some factors that assumptions in business can cause.
- Causes unnecessary stress
- Causes conflict and misunderstanding
- Creates problems where there aren’t actually any
- Destroys self confidence
- Lead you to offering the wrong products or services
Those are just a few factors that can ultimately be avoided if you leave assumptions out of your day to day lives. Always follow up with someone or check that something has been done. Don’t just ASSUME.
Assuming makes an – (Ass) out of yo(u) and (Me)