Telephone Skills

Better Communication: Check Your Approach

A recent workshop discussion led to this question: what kind of communicator are you, really? What are the best practices to adopt in order to be a great communicator? The class participants thought about what kind of attitudes we sometimes bring to communication, and came up with this list of best practices. As you read […]

Best in Class Power Phrases

Best in Class Power Phrases

How you speak, and the words and phrases you use, make a huge impact in the way you are perceived on the job, as well as in everyday life. For example, every time I hear someone say, “no problem,” I cringe. Why are you even bringing up the word problem? Instead, focus on the positive […]

No Problem…and Other Negative Expressions to Avoid

No Problem…and Other Negative Expressions to Avoid

How often have you heard the following phrases? No problem I can’t do that You’ll have to I’m not going to discuss that I’m not going to take up your time I’m not going to go into detail That will never work It’s a good idea, but It is so easy to fall into the […]

How to Choose the Right Words

How to Choose the Right Words

Do you ever get tongue-tied when you speak? Have trouble thinking of the right words to make your point? It’s frustrating when you can’t automatically find the right words. Let’s think about why that happens, and how you can build more fluency in your speech. First, consider the redundancy in word choices. When you are […]

10 Tips for Speaking with Focus and Composure

10 Tips for Speaking with Focus and Composure

These days we all seem to be engaged in multi-tasking, running from one meeting to another without a moment’s reflection in between. There is barely a moment to catch our breath, let alone time to mentally prepare for the next meeting. It’s stressful and exhausting, especially when you need to speak or present. It should […]

Golden Rules for Great Listening

Listening is a huge part of our daily life, both at work and at home. How good a listener are you–really? Because we rarely if ever give it any special attention, we might not be as good at listening as we would like to think we are! Here are some pointers that can help you […]

How to Become a Natural Born Communicator

How to Become a Natural Born Communicator

Jack* is a natural born people person. And that makes him a natural born communicator. When you first meet him you’ll notice his calm, steady eye contact and his friendly smile. But as you begin a conversation with him, something special begins to happen. He asks a few questions until he finds something you have […]

How to ACE an Unpleasant Discussion

How to ACE an Unpleasant Discussion

You have to terminate a project. You have to tell a job candidate she didn’t get the job. You have to tell your boss—or a client—you are unable to take on a new initiative. Whew! These may not be crucial conversations, but if they leave you feeling uncomfortable or if they place stress on key relationships, […]

Five Ways to be a Super Communicator

Five Ways to be a Super Communicator

Quick—who is the most effective communicator you know? Why did you think of that person? I am guessing that this person provides a consistently positive experience when they communicate with you. Let’s think about the experience you provide when someone comes into contact with you. It doesn’t matter if they work in the next cubicle, […]

Listen up: Take this Listening Quiz

Listen up: Take this Listening Quiz

A few years ago I worked with an individual who came to me because she seemed to have trouble listening to her boss. As we spoke, it turned out she was anxious about remembering everything he said, and so she would furiously write copious notes as he spoke. But the anxiety and the distraction of […]

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