In my past corporate job, I have heard some individuals using the word “perception” a lot. Especially when they were talking directly to individuals, they would always use it as a shield. For example: “The perception we have, is you are not a team player”, “you are being perceived as too direct” and so on.
I started to be annoyed by that word, because I felt it was being used and abused by some. It also didn’t sound it right in their delivery.
When you need to speak with a co-worker, subordinate or a friend, try to connect with that person to understand first what they are projecting. In most cases you should be able to see their personality. If someone is direct when speaking, there is no “perception” about it. That individual is actually what they are projecting at that specific time. Using the word perception could entice that person.
When someone is acting up, instead of going through the “perception” speech, just try to reach out to them at the human level, to understand and hear their grievances. It could be a great enlightening conversation to finally connect with that person. They can finally be seen and heard, shielding yourself behind this word is perceived in a negative way. Especially when this word is overused.
As a human being I see you, I hear you and I can feel what you are feeling. People want to be seen for who they are. It can be intimidating for some to face others that have a strong personality. It can make some others uncomfortable to be around you. If you are a leader that cannot be assertive enough to be able to face your subordinate, you should probably get some counseling on how to connect authentically with your subordinates.
The human factor is the key to connect with one another.
By connecting at the human level you are becoming engaged with everyone. Communication is the key to successfully leading a team. If you are not comfortable dealing with different personalities than you need to review your position as a leader. You need to stop shielding yourself behind the word “perception”. You are sending the wrong message