Directions versus a Map

By Pamela A. Scott

It happened again yesterday—the issue: detailed directions vs. a map on how to get somewhere. Pay attention and think about this before you send someone directions to your office or destination.

I was rushing off to a last-minute meeting and asked Sharon to find out where the restaurant was. Sharon, being a detail person, handed me two pages from an online mapping site. The detailed, step-by-step directions were on top; the map was underneath.

I know those detailed directions help some people, but they confuse the dickens out of big picture thinkers like myself. I just wanted a visual map, particularly since I know the area very well.

But Sharon needs all those little stop sign icons and directions like “proceed .01 miles,” etc. I can’t make sense out of all the data—it’s not logical to me. She won’t leave the office without it.

The next time you need to give directions—ask the person if they would prefer a map, step-by-step directions or both.


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