Category Archives: Communication

He quit????

It feels like a gut punch. You get a call from an important, trusted team member and it is not business as usual. He calls to give you his notice. What??? >

Confirmation bias

How often do you catch yourself looking for only those opinions that agree with your own? That, my friend, would be confirmation bias: only looking/listening to those who agree with you. While that seems to be a time honored tradition in politics, it is not good in business. >

The power of writing it down

What are the things you write down every day? My guess is your to-do’s and calendar/schedule comprise 90% of what you write down these days – items you record for yourself with keystrokes or by hand so as not to forget. Most of our other keystrokes are messaging and emailing with others.¬† Communication¬† that used to be by phone or in person or in a letter. Did you ever sit down and write a friend a long letter? Who does that now?

I am not advocating for a return to handwritten letters especially given how awful most peoples’ handwriting is. Remedial penmanship for this leftie was one of my worst memories of Catholic School. Rather, I am advocating for a time to reflect – to come back to center in a too urgent world. How you do it may need to fit your learning style. If you are a reader/writer, writing it down might be the hack. More on learning style in a minute.

So what would you write down? If your reflection time is just before bed, perhaps what went well today, or what you are grateful for. Who do you appreciate? What was the funniest thing that happened today? What do you want for tomorrow?

If your reflection time is in the morning, how does your body feel? Where will your focus be today? Who or what do you want to spotlight today?

If you are an auditory person, you might want to record your thoughts. If you are a kinesthetic learner, you might want to dance or exercise or stretch in this reflection time. If we work backwards from how you unconsciously process your day, does it reveal that you are a kinesthetic learner trying to fit in the box of a reader/writer? Don’t do that if it doesn’t excite you.

You do you. Find your style and seize the moment…..every day. Find a way to track it that works for you.

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Without interruption

It occurs to me that one of the reasons I write a weekly blog, is that I get to tell a whole story without being interrupted. There is something satisfying about completing my entire thought without being diverted into someone else’s response/ thoughts before I finished. As someone who listens for a living, it made me curious if others feel that way, too. >

Your words matter

As a leader within your organization and as a person out and about in the world, your words matter. We stopped for lunch on a long drive and the young waiter said to these 2 members of the older generation, “Hi guys, what can I get ya to drink?” Throughout the meal he used the honorific “you guys” in an other-wise perfectly acceptable service environment. It stuck in my craw. And, likely lowered his tip. >

The royal “we”

Are you annoyed when someone uses “we” instead of “I”? They purport to talk for all or at least to talk for YOU, when you are not in agreement? Doesn’t it trigger you right away? That is called the royal “we”. DIdn’t we fight a war of independence to get away from that? >

“I” words

When you are in a leadership role, have you noticed the difference between using “you” words and using “I” words in your speech? >

Traveling once again

So many people are traveling once again for work, pleasure, time with family, I guess it was time for us to do the same. We flew in early to Nashville for the Vistage Chairworld conference, and convinced my husband Paul’s brother Tom and his wife Judy to join us from their home in NE Tennessee. First up, we tried some of the local beers and enjoyed the music scene. By days end, when we returned to the hotel, Chairs were arriving from all over the world and the energy that comes from being with your most respected and loved peers was flowing.


Get granular

If you want to brand your organization in a way that sets you apart from the crowd, if you want to attract new customers, get more business from existing customers and be one of the top 3 in organic SEO search, you must get granular. Vistage Speaker Stacey Crowley explained how to do this to my 3 groups this week. >

Avoiding the Conversation

Ah, the work-arounds we create when we are avoiding the conversation! A team member was telling me about an interaction where he was treated rudely by email. Before he addressed it directly he had an email interchange with another colleague asking for advice. He wrote a careful reply and received no apology, just a righteous justification. Is he going to address it directly with a phone call? No. He is avoiding the conversation. >