File this under Humanistic Management
As much as we would like interoffice and intraoffice communication to go smoothly, the reality is that we humans aren’t robots. We are real people with real issues, real dreams, real desires and real insecurities. This means, a simple communication to ask a co-worker for some help can often be viewed as a form of power struggle between competing rivals.
Look. We all have a tendency to read into emails and letters what was left unspoken. Some of us are better at this than others, meaning that what we read into things is accurate. Most of us, however, are REALLY REALLY bad at this and read into things stuff that isn’t there.
What dictates our success or failure in this area is whether or not we are taking into account the actual motivation of other people or their perceived motivation. To help you reach the actual motivation, it is helpful to remember that the world doesn’t revolve around you. This person has their own issues and concerns that likely have nothing to do with you. Once you realize that, it puts you in a position to actually be helpful instead of competitive. And that will help everyone be more successful.