A sloppy request results in a slippery commitment. When last did you feel disappointed with or frustrated by someone who did not do what you requested of them?
Before you accuse them of a lack of commitment, reflect on the possibility that you may have made a ‘sloppy’ request.
What makes for a ‘sloppy’ request?
- What you ask for is not specific
- The exact nature of actions to be performed are not specified
- The time line for expected completion is not clear
- The criteria by which you will assess satisfactory completion is not shared
- You assume the listener understands the request as clearly as you do
You may think this is too much like micromanaging but think about the wastage of time, effort, energy and costs associated with a ‘sloppy’ request.
Give it a go and see what happens when you make effective requests of others and stop accepting ‘sloppy’ requests from others.