December 14, 2017

Dragging it out of them (or us)

Three in discussionIt’s remarkable how damaging it is to a relationship when we have to drag information out of someone—when we sense we aren’t being told everything and our time may be being wasted because we’re trying to solve a problem without all the facts.

Arguably, this was a factor in the resignation of Secret Service director Julia Pearson after security lapses at the White House. See http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-29452829. Confidence may particularly have drained because the whole truth of the incident only gradually emerged.

I’ve had two experiences of this recently…

One of them involves a software business rolling out an inadequately tested upgrade. Ensuing problems were, at first, the customers’ responsibility, it seemed. Eventually, accountability was accepted where it belonged and requests were made for time to resolve the issue—perfectly fine with me, once I knew that I didn’t have to labour over someone else’s problem.

But I’m warier of that company now. That’s the damage.

Another experience involves the publisher of a well-known news magazine that seems to be making economies in delivery timescale for subscribers without really telling them. Contacting customer services is a Kafkaesque experience. Result: Loss of trust.

Are you having to drag the facts out of anyone at the moment?

If so, how do you feel about it?

And what are the implications for when the roles are reversed?