Coming Together from Different POV’s

Once, I was having a conversation with a junior colleague about a new development in the industry. Mid-conversation, they suddenly pulled out their phone.

At first I was startled by the rudeness of the gesture. But then they turned their phone screen around to show me an article that was completely relevant to the conversation.

It occurred to me that I had rushed to judge and was wrong to do so. I had interpreted looking at a phone as the “universal” sign of dismissal while it was actually their way of demonstrating their full engagement. It is important to remember that we all may have different ways of expressing the same thing. Just as two different languages will have two different words with the same meaning, sometimes we need to learn our colleagues’ “communication vocabulary” that differs from our own. We may approach situations differently, so it is important to make an effort to understand one another to reach our shared goals. After all, it is possible to have a meeting of the minds, even if you start from different directions.