The idea of self-talk elicits images of less-than-sane people muttering to themselves as they stumble about less-than-safe streets. I try not to look like that when I talk to myself. In theory, this means ensuring my internal monologue is actually internal when other people are about. In practice, people are always sneaking around corners and […]
Archive for Communication
People have delivered countless speeches in history. But even speeches delivered by the most prominent people, on the most auspicious occasions, routinely make little difference. Think of presidential speeches, like inaugural or State of the Union addresses. How many of them had any lasting impact? Just a few, like John F. Kennedy’s 1961 exhortation to […]
He stood awkwardly in the front of the room. I remember him shifting on the balls of his feet as he read a script from behind the podium. We were called into the auditorium to hear the vision of the company. Rumors of impending layoffs circulated, increasing the tension in the room. Many years later, […]
There’s just no substitute for vision. When we have a compelling, unifying view of the future—and we’re able to communicate that view—it can motivate people to accomplish astonishing things. And those who lack vision, well, they’re just “unready” for the challenge of leadership. In this episode, we’re going to explore the importance of vision to energize […]
Company culture can make or break a business and those who are a part of it. According to a study by Deloitte, half of workers agree that culture has the strongest effect on their experience and engagement, beating out the environment and even the tools and technology they use on the job. For a company […]
Comedians refer to an audience that hasn’t heard any jokes yet as a “cold room.” It is thus the job of the comics who go first or second in the night to warm them up. You tell some jokes, suggest a convivial mood for the crowd, and hope they’ve brought their funny bones. I have […]
“Does it get easier the more people you fire?” someone once asked me. I’ve been in leadership for decades now, and there’s no escaping letting people go from time to time. But that doesn’t make it easier. “No,” I said, “it hasn’t. And I hope to God it never does.” But while frequency doesn’t translate […]
Unresponsive people drive me crazy. I hate sending an email or Slack message to someone and then waiting days to hear anything back. (Admittedly, I have sometimes been guilty of this myself.) This is particularly maddening when you don’t hear anything at all. One of the questions I always ask when interviewing executive assistants is […]
When I was the CEO at Thomas Nelson, one of our authors was frustrated. In response to a disappointing sales report, he fired off a blistering email to one of our divisional leaders. He complained about poor results. He criticized the sales strategy and our failure to execute. Worse, he challenged the leader’s intelligence, competence, […]
Good conversationalists have great influence. In this post, I share five strategies I have learned for having better conversations.
Trust is to an organization what oil is to a car engine. It keeps the moving parts from seizing and stopping forward motion. But trust is not something you can take for granted. It takes months—sometimes years—to build. Unfortunately, you can lose it overnight.
Leaders face a lot of problems, but poor communication is one they often create for themselves. In fact, nine in ten employees say it sabotages the success of executives, according to one study. The same study found the second biggest problem area for leaders was a lack of clear directions. I think this probably applies […]