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Clarifying needs and intent

Posted on:September 6, 2023 at 05:31 PM

We’re planning a Disney trip for my son’s 4th birthday and my wife laid out the days and tickets we’ll need to buy.

Upon showing me I subconsciously thought, “she is bringing me a plan ready to be reviewed, picked apart, and ultimately fixed.” No problem! I Do this for a living reviewing code and giving good honest feedback.

I look over the document, see a couple areas for improvement, and spell out a reasonable solution.

She says no, we’re not changing the date. Her argument lacks the solid reasoning mine does so I simply point that out.

She replies, “I’m not changing the date”…

PAUSE, deep breath, what is even happening here?

I say, “why did you bring this document to me?”

She says, “I was looking for alignment so I can book the tickets.”

She is not an engineer. She works at the top of a marketing department, very often meeting with executive teams pushing for multi-million dollar budgets, high level strategy, and is responsible for results of execution. She does not need a “fix”, she needs at most, a nod of the head and pat on the back.

I then explained the reason I thought she came to me and we both had a good laugh. I finished with a classic, “this meeting should have been a text” :)