Personal Development & Success

/Personal Development & Success

4 Misconceptions About How to Be an Engaging Speaker

An executive coaching client shared this goal with me:  “I want to become a more inspiring speaker so my employees really become engaged and catch the vision for this upcoming year.” The backstory:  According to the CEO, this senior leader Tyler, who’d assumed the role of plant manager three years earlier, did not get along [...]

What to Say to Someone When Their Loved One Dies

Three times in the past year, I’ve had the sad occasion to have a friend lose a spouse through death: car accident, heart attack, and cancer. As I attended the visitation and memorial service, I couldn’t help but notice how many people seemed at a loss about what to say to their friend or coworker [...]

How to Control Dominators in Meetings

Meetings often unfold similar to encounters on the playground: Passive and dominating attendees annoy each other and complicate things. So why not simply let the passive meeting participants fade into the woodwork and let the dominators take over the game board? Several reasons: Dominators monopolize and prevent other ideas and solutions from surfacing. Dominators often [...]

8 Ways to Improve the ROI of Staff Meetings

Ray, our COO many years ago, used to start meetings with 10-15 minutes of chit-chat. While his intention was to promote socializing, the effect was late-arrivers, difficulty in focusing at the start of serious discussion, and low energy throughout the rest of the meeting. I’ve sat through meetings in which attendees fidgeted with their devices, [...]

Start an Elevator Conversation; Forget the Elevator Speech

The elevator speech is dead. That was my pronouncement in last week’s blog. The reasons: Elevator speeches are too vague, too canned, too boring. Hearing an elevator speech, people feel that you’ve tossed them “bait.” They resist “being hooked.” They push back just like you resist the salesperson who approaches you as you walk in [...]

10 Tiny Things That Create Big First Impressions

Whether it takes 7 seconds or 17 minutes to make a first impression, people always seem astonished at what idiosyncrasy causes the gut reaction. That reaction may be positive or negative, but it pays to know how others perceive you. After more than 30 years of personal coaching and studying the topics of interpersonal skills, [...]