Friday, April 22, 2005

Communication Breakdown?

There are times when people unintentionally use the wrong words. There are times when they use the right words, too. Now, there are people who use every opportunity to correct other people's speech. This includes grammar (for anyone who reads the comments, this is where I misspelled grammar as 'graamar'), pronunciation, and word choice. Here are a few of my thoughts...

Whenever someone is talking, the purpose is to communicate something. Period. So, when someone misuses a word, or uses improper grammar, I try not to correct them if they are getting their point across. If, however, what they are saying is unclear, I try to politely ask for clarification. Sometimes this leads to them asking about their own misuse of speech. It is only at that point that I will correct someone, with one exception...

When I am around someone who constantly corrects others' speech, I have a tendency to want to correct the person doing the correcting. I try to do this by saying something to the person being corrected. Something to the effect of, "That's okay, I knew what you meant, and that is what counts". The main reason I do this is to make the correctee(?) feel more at ease. The secondary reason is to gently remind the corrector what the point of speech is.

Of course, there are exceptions to this too. Maybe the person doing the correcting has knowledge of what the other person is talking about, and has to correct them to make sure the point is clear. Then I think it is okay. There are also times in a professional setting when someone who continually makes errors in their speech needs to be corrected. That is also okay.

After saying all that, I have to add that I kind of like being corrected. It helps me communicate better. Sometimes I realize my mistake right away, and correct myself. Sometimes I accept the correction without question. Other times, a correction causes me to investigate further, once again helping me improve my speech.

I will be the first to admit that there are probably several glaring grammatical errors in the above paragraphs. If there are, I apologize, and please let me know. Hopefully I was able to communicate my thoughts...Well?

5 Comments:

At 2:03 PM, Blogger PA said...

Awesome post!

As someone who communicates for a living. I can say that there will always be a disconnect between what is said/written and what is heard or read.

Managing that in-born miscommunication is the difference between being understood or misunderstood.

 
At 3:51 PM, Blogger Spyder said...

You misspelled grammar....

 
At 4:24 PM, Blogger A1 Success Force said...

Thank you. I will correct that :)

 
At 10:21 AM, Anonymous Tony said...

Usually when I correct one, it's generally just a joke. I can't imagine actually caring if someone says "anyways" instead of "anyway", just because the former isn't technically a word lol.

Who knows with some people, though.

 
At 12:54 PM, Blogger Caron said...

I sometimes correct people and then feel stupid for doing it. It isn't as if I never make a mistake, after all. I like being corrected, but not when someone is making fun of me. I thought it interesting that you admit to being ok with correction. I like that. :)

 

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