Problems With Asking “Do You Understand?”

This entry is part 1 of 4 in the series Education Bias

Long ago I sat in on the reprimand of an employee by a manager. The manager concluded his discussion by asking the employee, “Do you understand what I’m saying?” The employee responded, “Yes.” It suddenly occurred to me how biased we are in thinking that education alone will correct behavior. In other words, we assume…

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When more information and education don't persuade

Why More Information And Education Don’t Solve Problems

This entry is part 2 of 4 in the series Education Bias

More information and education often don’t solve problems alone. Yet, people often think they do. It’s common. It shows up whenever one concludes a talk with another by asking, “Do you understand?” If the answer is “yes,” one then assumes the person will do or think whatever was explained. That’s an education bias: the belief…

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Education Bias (Pt 3): Leadership Over Knowledge

This entry is part 3 of 4 in the series Education Bias

An education bias overlooks the profound impact of feelings, emotions and intuition on thinking in choice. Leadership is the most poignant example. Patrick Spenner and Karen Freeman, managing directors at Corporate Executive Board, state in their article, “To Keep Your Customers, Keep It Simple” (Harvard Business Review, May 2012 edition): . . . the [leader]…

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Education Bias (Pt 5): Understanding vs. Appreciation

This entry is part 4 of 4 in the series Education Bias

Someone once asked, “Mike, do you think people understand you?” “No,” I answered. “Does that bother you?” “No.” “Why not?” “Well, it’s very difficult, if not impossible, to understand yourself let alone someone else. Heck, even science doesn’t understand completely how we work. So, to expect someone to understand you not only seems unrealistic but…

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