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Category: For Your Information (Page 1 of 43)

How to Make Your Speaking Voice Sound More Intelligent

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Article Written by:  Dr. Nick Morgan,

You’re standing in the wings, getting ready to go on stage to give an important speech. If you’re like most people, you’re just a little nervous at this point. Well, OK, maybe more than a little nervous. Maybe you’re terrified. And maybe you’re asking yourself, how do I sound more intelligent, confident, dominant, and attractive than I really am in order to succeed with this audience?

Fortunately for you, Susan M. Hughes, from the Department of Psychology at Albright College, has carried out a neat little research study to help you do exactly that.

The results are more nuanced and surprising than you might expect.

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Small Details for Big Picture People

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Article Written by:  Eric Torrence,

For some of us, details are like the Dementors from Harry Potter. If “Dementor” is a foreign word to you, here’s how one of J.K. Rowling’s characters, Professor Lupin, described them: “Dementors are among the foulest creatures that walk this earth. They infest the darkest, filthiest places, they glory in decay and despair, they drain peace, hope, and happiness out of the air around them.”

For a large portion of people (including me), details drain peace, hope, and happiness out of the air around us. Perhaps that sounds melodramatic, but it’s how I feel whenever an Excel spreadsheet opens up.

Detail Oriented or Big Picture: Which Are You?
We all tend to fall into one of two categories: big picture or detail-oriented. Big picture people love grand visions, brainstorming new ideas, and Cliff Notes or “Executive Summaries.” Detail-oriented individuals love intricate systems, spreadsheets, and nuance. They probably do their own taxes.

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7 Power Tips For Having A Tough Conversation

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Article Found on Leadership Freak Blog

7 Power Tips for Having a Tough Conversation:

#1. Build positive relationships.

#2. Prepare carefully.

#3. Choose an effective location.

#4. Stay open.

#5. Get to the point quickly.

#6. Turn to the future.

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Here Are 5 Ways To Negotiate An Apology

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Article Written by:  Tanya Tarr, Forbes

What’s a key resource in any business? Relationships. Experts point to the value of strong relationships in developing success and leadership at work and in the world. But what if we accidentally jeopardize those relationships? We all make mistakes. Maybe it’s a botched meeting or a tragically double-booked day. Maybe you forgot about a conference call and logged on (accidentally) 15 minutes late. You didn’t calculate time zones correctly, or you just spaced out at your desk. Whatever the case may be, we have all been there. While concrete steps should be taken to avoid future mistakes, the way we recover and apologize can mean the difference between making a career limiting move or repairing and possibly strengthen work relationships.

This all comes down to the art of apology. While you might not consider an apology to be a negotiation, it absolutely is one. While I’ve written about the power of having a strong walkaway plan, there are times when executing your walkaway plan aren’t feasible. It also might be the case that walking away would be more damaging than negotiating the space where the disagreement lives.

Where a negotiation based on price involves a zone of possible agreements, negotiating an apology involves a zone of possible concerns. Respect and trust are the values being transacted. Taking the time to surface the concerns of your negotiating partner (or the person you missed the meeting with) is part of defining that zone of possible concerns. The other part of defining your zone of possible concerns is determining what actions will re-establish trust and strategically communicate respect. Let’s look at five ways to do this:

1. Be sincere, direct and clear in your communication. Principled negotiators often mention the importance of clear and direct communication. That might look like briefly stating the honest reason why something might have gotten fumbled and offer a short, sincere apology. I’m not talking about over-apologizing, which can be a hazard for some. This would be a situation where it’s clear you had direct fault in a negative outcome. The key here is to speak very plainly, own fault where appropriate, and pivot quickly to a solution. That solution might be a discussion on how you can make the situation right or how you will take steps to make sure it doesn’t happen again in the future.

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How Not To Let All Those Blank Stares Derail Your Talk

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Article Written by:  Anett Grant, Fast Company

Unfortunately, your audience won’t always be smiling and upbeat when you’re speaking in public. Here’s how you can prevent their poker faces from rattling your nerves.

How Not To Let All Those Blank Stares Derail Your Talk

Other people’s facial expressions affect you physically, not just emotionally. According to one recent study, seeing someone smiling can lower the body’s cortisol and stress levels. As a speaker, though, you may not always get those benefits when you need them most to calm your nerves. Many of your meetings and presentations will kick off with a sea of blank stares facing back at you, and it’s your job to avoid showing how intimidated you are and keep sounding interesting. These four tips can help you do exactly that.

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Three Ways To Lead A Pack Of Complainers

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Original Article:


Success always encounters complainers. But some people complain like it’s an Olympic sport.

#1. Practice optimistic transparency:

Don’t sweep complaints under the carpet. Expose them to the light.

Reject anonymous complaining.

Never represent an anonymous complainer.

Fear of making matters worse motivates some leaders to deal with issues quietly. But you should assume that recurring complaints are already known by others. 

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The 4 Questions All Leaders Must Ask

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Article Written by:  Bruce Court,

It’s a well-known fact that effective leaders do more seeking than telling. Some behavior analysts, like consultant and academic Neil Rackham, look for a ratio of approximately two “seeks” for every ”tell” (Rackham has written primarily about the behavior of salespeople, but his rule of thumb is a good one for leaders, too). Author Daniel Goleman popularized the concept of Emotional Intelligence, and DDI’s own research concluded that EQ trumps IQ in four areas: Cultivating Networks, Driving Execution, Leading Teams and Compelling Communication.

Over the last six months I’ve provided assessment feedback to leaders on three continents, at multiple levels, in various industries. These leaders had varying levels of experience, skills, and personal attributes—yet among them, a common theme emerged. These leaders were either not asking enough questions or they neglected to ask the right questions. It didn’t matter what level in the organization the person was from, nor what competency they were having assessed.

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Do You Encourage People to Ask for Help?

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Article Written by:  Susan Fowler,

After a grueling 90-minute uphill hike, two major obstacles were preventing me from the ultimate goal: the famous Potato Chip Rock photo op.

I needed to mount a huge bolder and then somehow cross what appeared to be an endless ravine leading to the ledge. I studied the techniques the other (much younger) climbers used, but with a recent knee replacement, I simply couldn’t climb up the big bolder or jump across the ravine.

So, I yelled from the base of the huge bolder, “Is there a strong young man up there who could help me lift me up?” A man crouched, steadied himself, and held out his hand. I couldn’t reach it. Suddenly I felt someone pushing me from behind, I grabbed the man’s hand and found myself flying up the rock. But the ravine was another matter. The only approach seemed to be jumping across.

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The Paradoxical Power of Narrative

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Article Written by:  John Hegel III,

I love paradox. Paradox is fertile ground for generating new insight and progress. As we think about what we as human beings want in our brief journey through this world, there’s a core paradox that can be a challenge for all of us.

The paradox

We all want to belong. None of us want to feel excluded, none of us want to feel like we’re “outsiders.” That need to belong is ever expanding. Sure, we may feel like we belong in our family, but if we feel excluded or isolated from our local community, we’re likely to feel frustrated and alone. And, it doesn’t stop with our community; we all want to feel a part of our broader communities. There’s nothing more frustrating than feeling that our community is excluded or isolated from the countries we live in. Taking it yet one more step, no one wants to feel that their country stands alone from the rest of the world – we all want to be part of something bigger, something much bigger.

Of course, if we do feel excluded or isolated, we seek comfort in the belief that the problem is with “them,” not with “us.” We’re the victims and we need to mobilize to resist the bad folks who are excluding us. We become prey to an “us vs. them” view of the world. That view may help us to cope with our perceived reality, but it doesn’t reduce our unmet need to belong to something bigger.

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Ask These 4 Empathetic Questions When You’re Struggling To Listen

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Article Written by:  Faisal Hoque,

Losing your patience and beginning to tune out (or line up a snide rebuttal)? Try this instead.

Ask These 4 Empathetic Questions When You’re Struggling To Listen

You don’t need to be convinced that empathy is a good thing–not just for ethical reasons but for practical ones, too. While we’re still often cautioned to “leave emotions out of it,” being able to put yourself in someone else’s shoes is a hallmark of emotionally intelligent leadership, not to mention just being a good coworker. It can open up new lines of communication, create understanding, and help everyone achieve common goals.

Of course, none of that means it’s easy. There are always going to be times when empathy is uniquely difficult to summon and sustain. When the going gets tough, your patience wears thin, and you can feel your frustration rising, it’s enormously difficult to take a deep breath and continue to listen with an open mind. Still, these four empathetic questions I’ve learned to ask in difficult situations have helped me keep my cool and get to the bottom of whatever the trouble might be.

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