Focus. Organize. Remember. Communicate. Evaluate.

June 21, 2011

React vs. Respond

Are you looking for a reaction or a response? Although recognized as synonyms, both can yield different interpretations. When describing behaviors, respond can imply the person was prepared for a given stimulus. React can imply instinct. In summary, respond is to control as react is to impulse. Consider the following examples:

Example 1: Peter responded to his supervisor's suggestions.

Example 2: Peter reacted to his supervisor's suggestions.

Relevant life experience with employment, specifically supervisors, will play an important role when interpreting examples above. Simply stated, using the word respond to describe behaviors may reduce the chances of getting a reaction.