What Were They Expecting?

Josiah Fisk | Salon 4

President, More Carrot LLC



Of all the factors that can affect the reception and comprehension of a message, audience expectations are perhaps the most overlooked. Yet they can be one of the most important sources of communications failure. This presentation will clarify how expectations relate to needs, wants and cognitive ability, and will discuss the main types of expectations that influence receptiveness and what can shape them. We’ll also look at why it’s more important to avoid confirming negative expectations than to completely fulfill positive ones. Through real-life examples, you’ll see how to do your own informal yet practical analyses of the expectation environment your communications are landing in and how to avoid some of the most common pitfalls.



Building a common foundation