“You got me daisies? I wanted pink roses!”

You know exactly what I’m thinking, right? No, you really don’t!

Yet how often do we just expect people to know exactly what we are thinking or expecting?


Yes, you have talked around the subject.

“I love how fresh flowers really brighten up my day”

You have also dropped some pretty big hints.

“I saw the flower stall is at the market today.”

You hoped they would understand. But they just didn’t get it in the way you thought they would.

“You got me daisies? I wanted the pink roses.”

So what’s gone wrong?

You’re seeing things from different perspectives. To the other person, daisies are beautiful fresh flowers. To you, they’re a weed and they are certainly not the roses you were hoping for!


You weren’t candid enough.

Being candid means being honest, transparent, and straightforward. When we are candid, we eliminate the need for guesswork and assumptions. We communicate clearly and reduce the chance of misinterpretation and confusion. This makes sure that everyone is on the same page.

Leaders who aren’t candid enough can be thought of as weak. It can be interpreted as a lack of strong and effective leadership. Their performance may be challenged.

Being candid fosters trust between people and teams. When we’re open and honest, people are more likely to trust us. This creates a culture that’s supportive and safe. A culture where people are comfortable sharing their thoughts, ideas, and experiences. If we are not candid, others may suspect we are hiding something which can lead to a breakdown in trust or poor workplace culture.

By being candid we make sure our interactions are productive, effective, and free from misunderstanding. Whether in our personal or professional lives using the right level of candour is a key strength.


Being candid.

But it’s not always easy to be candid. It can feel uncomfortable. For many of us, it takes conscious effort and practice. Here are 5 tips that you might find useful:

  1. Make the conversation genuine; be guided by the fact you care – caring requires being candid at times.
  2. Own it; don’t hide behind processes or procedures.
  3. Remember to be candid about positive things as well as negative issues. More positives than negatives works best.
  4. Remember that being candid is not an excuse to be blunt or rude!
  5. Use assertive language. You might like to try something like – “This is what is going on for me, I thought you should know.”


So, next time there’s something you really want or need, don’t drop hints or talk around the subject. Practice turning up your candidness.

I’d really like some pink roses from the flower stall at the market.”


Want to know more?

Sarah Harvey is the Founding Director of Savvy Conversations Ltd and author of the highly acclaimed book “Savvy Conversations: A practical framework for effective workplace relationships.”

Website: https://savvyconversations.co.uk

Linked In: https://www.linkedin.com/in/savvysarah

Twitter: @SarahSavvySarah


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