It’s been a week of communication blues on the job.  As a project manager I certainly understand and appreciate the importance of good communication – not that I always do the greatest job of it.

Something struck me recently after a few incidents in which “communication” arose as an issue among our teams. What struck me was that there are two responsible parties in the communication cycle – the sender and the receiver. Now, I know this isn’t anything new to all of you, but I think at times the receiver’s responsibility  in the communication is often skirted.

Here’s how it plays out.  I’m asked to communicate to certain stakeholders in the organization. I ask what type of information is important to them and  how often they’d like to receive these communications and the format. I diligently provide the comms based on these discussions – yet, I’m still criticized for not communicating enough or the right information. Hmmm…this got me thinking.  What I came up with is that a good percentage of the time the receiving party isn’t reading or listening to the communication.  They are playing a passive role and are more than happy to play ignorant when the issue escalates.

So, I commit to continue to improve on my communication skills – but all you receivers out there need to work harder too.