Ok. I admit it. I am a self confessed “cereal killer.” I have been since as a teenager I could devour a whole box of Cheerios at one sitting. If you were hearing this admission rather than reading it, this would be a very concerning blog post. This phenomenon happens all the time with the English language and even worse when communicating with someone whose English is a second language.
It happened one time when I was mentoring a young Chinese born manufacturing professional as I and asked her if she “ever planned to enter a cleaner side of the industry?” Her reaction was obvious and I came to learn she thought I was insinuating she might enter the dry cleaning industry. It happened internationally a couple weeks ago when the words “blame” and “hold accountable” were used interchangeably. They definitely have difference connotations in the United States. The funniest wording mix-up I’ve heard came from a friend that publically said she forgot her “pants” instead of “trousers” while in the UK. That brought a lot of smiles.
Have you learned from an important mistake? Does it happen within the United States too?