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23 Jun In Customer Service, Words Matter: What Do Chick-fil-A and the Ritz-Carlton Have in Common? 

At Chick-fil-A, when a customer says “Thank you,” their employees don’t say “You’re welcome” or “No problem.” Instead, they say, “My pleasure,” and there’s a big difference. 

Find out why in this CNN article: 

https://www.cnn.com/2022/04/09/business/chick-fil-a-my-pleasure/index.html 

 

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27 Apr Strengthening Relationships with Appreciation 

Everyone wants to be appreciated. People want to feel and know they matter. Unfortunately, our culture in the business world leans more towards critique than appreciation and competition more than support. Knowing how to share authentic appreciation is an invaluable skill for strengthening relationships.

Here are four tips that help: 

Be Prompt - Its best to share appreciation immediately, if possible. If you wait too long, you are likely to overanalyze, script yourself, and lose authenticity. The more delay, the less authenticity. Another risk with delay is the person you are appreciating may not remember the action/event details, and therefore, your appreciation wont have its intended impact.  (more…)

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7 Apr Three Approaches to Better Presentations

Whether it’s a team effort or a one-person responsibility, a presentation can make or break a contract or client relationship. This brief article gives you three critical elements required for preparing a successful presentation.

If you provide a product or a service, there is truth in the old adage that “products don’t sell, people do.” Certainly, there are isolated exceptions, but person-to-person contact is invaluable for most businesses. In this framework, the business presentation holds a unique and critical place. It is an essential part of the public relations, marketing, and sales for any company, large or small.

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24 Mar Zoom, the Pope, and a Lesson Learned

I read an interesting article in The Atlantic based on a recent speech by the Pope. He reflected on the importance of face-to-face communication in a world that has gone online.  He said: 

“Text mediums deprive us of cues like facial expressions, posture, and vocal inflections. As a result, they are especially ill-suited to figuring out what people who aren’t adept at writing believe or intend to express….To interact with people in person is to see how complicated most of us are.” 

While the article’s author analyzes this through the lens of what makes a good journalist, the lesson is important for all of us who are on Zoom a lot. 

Read the article here. 

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3 Mar Getting your Message Across: Strategies for Conveying Technical and Complex Information 

Communication excellence, speaking clearly and conveying ideas with impact, is highly associated with career and organizational success.

Yet, healthcare and technology leaders face a major challenge: simplifying complex and technical information so that others “get it,” buy-in, and take action for best results.

Here are some truths about transmitting knowledge  and influencing others outside your field:

  • Knowing your topic does not equal speaking clearly about your topic.
  • Your listeners likely don’t care about your topic as much as you do-sorry!
  • Anytime you speak, whether one on one or to a crowd,  in person or virtual, in a formal or informal setting, you are a “presenter.”
  • Preparation, not Desperation: Strategize and plan, no matter how knowledgeable you are. 

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23 Feb Vocal Variety and Its Role in Virtual Presenting  

Now that virtual presenting is here is stay, keep in mind that your oral delivery is more important than ever. Our colleagues, clients, and anyone else who is listening at home or in their office are most likely multitasking. Some of us have two monitors that allow us to be watching/listening and doing multiple tasks simultaneously. Since a few of your listeners may not be directly looking at the screen, your voice is what captures their attention. Therefore, I am coaching clients to incorporate “vocal variety.” Vocal variety is when you choose a specific word or phrase to add vocal emphasis to convey a meaning. A very easy way to add vocal variety is to increase your volume. (more…)

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10 Feb Answering Off the Cuff

#1 Thinking on your feet 

When I meet potential clients, their needs span many areas, but I want to talk about one I find almost everywhere I go.  “How can I be better at speaking off the cuff?”  Easy!  Well, honestly, it is easy, but to explain how it’s easy, let’s talk about what you are asking for.

Speaking off the cuff, thinking on your feet, or any other way you describe it, comes from the idea of speaking with limited notes in a time crunch.  You don’t get to take a lot of time to fully plan a response. You must deliver at that moment!  So, the way you can be ready for anything is to prepare ahead of time.  (more…)

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17 Jan How to Be A Listener-Centric Communicator

The concept of adapting your content and delivery to WHO you are speaking is a worthy objective. However, being able to do it in a poignant and meaningful manner can be an advanced skill, and it will take your workplace communication to the next level.

This article will provide a quick overview of one way in which we help our clients adapt to their listeners. The concept is called Patterns of Reasoning. The normal human brain capacity allows us to function with two basic patterns of reasoning; we use these patterns as the structure for our thoughts and speech. No one is completely one or the other.

 

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11 Jan Choosing a High Quality Speech Coach

If you are looking for a communication coach to help you with your effectiveness as a communicator, I urge you to check out the new book published by Rutledge. It’s called The Handbook of Communication Training. It features 50 different communication professionals, experts, professors, and practitioners from around the United States who have come together to agree that the best communication coaching and learning happens when your coach has been trained and shows prowess in these seven best practices. They are: (more…)

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26 Nov Why Doesn’t a Power Pose Work for Me? 

Dating back as far as the 1950s, psychologists have connected the idea of your physical position with confidence. For example, people associated the psychology of “walking tall”  with confidence.  Over the decades, the concept evolved. In addition, movies, television, and social media have projected what confidence looks like.  So it’s not much of a surprise when language like “power pose” and “Wonderwoman pose “ have gained new attention to the idea that your physical stance can impact confidence.  (more…)

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