I spent all day yesterday with a group of my peers – computer consulting business owners. We’ll be together today as well. I noticed as we discussed how things are going in our businesses that many people assume that their goals and motivations are exactly the same as everyone else’s. People who believe this don’t tend to listen as well as those who understand that we don’t all want the same thing. For me, what I want from my business has changed many times over the 18 years I’ve been doing it. In fact, my business goals have changed enough that I have an appreciation of many of the motivations of people in the room, and an understanding of the ones who don’t understand those differences.
It’s not just business where these differing goals can get confused. In many aspects of life, we mistakenly assume that others are motivated similarly to us. It’s the default position. I challenge you to stop and consider what motivates the people around you whenever you have made an assumption about what they really want. If not, you may be working from an assumption that interferes with your success.