What is a sure way to make enemies and damage your career?
Fail to coordinate with people.
A common charge that is tucked within allegations of insensitivity is that the offender has dropped others on their head. That seldom comes from excessive communication. Here's how this problem arises:
1. You make a commitment, change your mind, and then don't tell those who are relying on your original words that you've flipped. You may have had noble reasons for the shift, but that probably won't erase the embarrassment felt by those who relied upon your word.
2. You over-promise and, although you strive to keep your word, you are unable to do so. The central message received by others? You are nice but unreliable.
3. You leave others out of matters in which they have a clear interest. They begin to feel that you either don't appreciate their significance or you want to shut out their views.
4. You do consult others, but in a superficial manner or at a moment that is too late for their input to make any difference. Oddly enough, this may anger them more than the others since they'll regard your coordination efforts as insincere and insulting.
People might get angry if you consult them too much, but they will be far less upset than if you seem to disrespect them.
Michael Wade writes Execupundit.com, an eclectic combination of management advice, observations, and links. A partner with the Phoenix firm of Sanders Wade Rodarte Consulting Inc., he has advised private and public-sector organizations for more than 30 years.