Monday, July 23, 2018

Poor Communication Is Like A Smoking Gun

Credit: Gun photo (not image of weapon involved)
Guns in the wrong hands can change a community, even your own.

Something tragic happened recently in my neighborhood. However, the information made available to me by management did anything to help me understand just how tragic the situation turned out to be.

In a North Carolina community, an everyday afternoon ended in tragedy. And the incident that took place was made even more disturbing by the poor communication provided by the community management.

No matter where you are or what you do, clear communication is everything. It is imperative, both in business and personal situations. And on this particular day, clear communication was nowhere to be found. The community management team provided the following letter to alert all residents of what took place. The community name and the name of the manager has been removed. Typos and inaccuracies were not changed.

As you read the text from the letter, ask yourself the following: Do you know what happened after reading this letter? You be the judge.
Client Incident Notification Letter

Please allow this letter to provide brief information concerning a tragic accident that occurred at approximately 9:00PM on 8/2/2010.

While we do welcome any inquiry regarding this event; the only information we have available is that the incident was ruled an accident The identities of those involved will not be revealed, so that community peace can be maintained, and the families involved can have time to grieve in the manner they choose.

As always, we do appreciate our clients and we share your concern when tragedies like this occur.

Thank you for your attention to this correspondence and ask that you do not participate in any rumors as they only do damage to the property and to those and to those that are personally affected.

For any of you who would like to make a contribution to the family, you may do so at the office. Also, if you need to talk with someone or need help explaining it to your children I have information on a Dr. XXXXX you may talk too.

XXXX, Community Manager

If you still are unclear of what happened, here is what was reported in the local news. This event actually took place in the community where I call home with my own 12-year-old and 9-year-old sons.

Tragically, just two days ago, a 12-year-old boy was shot and killed in the complex. The young boy was visiting one of his friend’s homes and his friend apparently brought out a gun, the gun went off and the 12-year-old boy died. I have a 12-year-old. I am so blessed that my own son was not involved.

And more than anything, I am so thankful I didn not have to find a letter like this on my door regarding my own son.

For more stories on the impact of poor communication, visit:

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2 comments on Poor Communication Is Like A Smoking Gun

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By Jack Bates on September 16, 2010 at 06:39 pm

This is a fantastic article. It brings to light how crucial communication is. The pre and post analysis was clear and powerful. Great contribution to Broo!

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By BusinessLife on September 17, 2010 at 05:38 am

With the recent action in education, or the lack there of in Washington, D.C., where I call my hometown, I have a 3-part series starting Monday on education and communication and how the two poorly combined can easily attribute to the quality of our country's leadership for tomorrow.

@Frank Bates - thank you for your comment. I am honored and glad you saw the reason I was most disturbed by possible rumors the letter caused rather than the communication it was supposed to offer.

@Melody Haislip - I was so frustrated when I received the letter and then so horribly shocked when I heard what truly happened. I was thankful that I had my son to scold for not doing his homework rather than the possible consequences. As far as rumors, the only communication I started was this article. I just wanted to hold my boys close and later began an article on discussing the importance of asking parents of my children's friends if they had a weapon in the home prior to my boys staying over to play. Better to ask than to live with the possible consequences.

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