As we discussed under point 1: values, each person interprets words in their own way.
This interpretation or understanding starts at birth. A child hears a word from its parents and its initial understanding of that word will come from the way in which the parent used the word. Their interpretation or understanding may change when they go to school.
Under point 1: values, we used the word ‘success’. Dictionary.com provides four explanations:
- the favourable or prosperous termination of attempts or endeavours; the accomplishment of one’s goals.
- the attainment of wealth, position, honours, or the like.
- a performance or achievement that is marked by success, as by the attainment of honours.
- a person or thing that has had success, as measured by attainment of goals, wealth, etc.
When you use the word ‘success’, what do you mean?
When your client uses the word ‘success’, what do they mean?
When your parents, colleagues, peers, or friends use the word ‘success’, what do they mean?
This is made more difficult across languages. Talking in your first language (the language of your birth) gives you an advantage, as you will learn words and may change the meaning as you get older. Talking in a second, third, or even fourth language means that the person talking will use a word as they have translated from their own language. Becomes more difficult when you consider colloquialisms and terminology and technology.
Every culture has different ways of behaviour or expressing itself. For example, some cultures believe that opening a door for someone older than you is part of the countries values and the way in which people from that country will behave. Other cultures believe that the person opening the door walks through first. Neither is right and neither is wrong. It is a different way of looking at the world.
In the coaching and mentoring industry, every person working within the industry will demonstrate their respect for each consumer and person working within the industry. Just because that person is different, does not mean they are wrong. What it means is that they look at the world through a different perspective.