Communication

Is the age of profanity over?

September 13, 2010
Goldman Sachs now prohibits employees from swearing in e-mails, and uses screening software to spot and remove profanity. The impetus for change was the company’s embarrassment over profanity-littered e-mails that were repeatedly trotted out during congressional hearings. But is there ever a good cause for profanity in the workplace?

New study suggests real-life ‘mind meld’

September 13, 2010

Know how sometimes you “click” with your colleagues while other times you don’t? This phenomenon might actually have a real neurological basis—what you might even call a “mind meld,” after the fictional practice from the TV series “Star Trek.”

What rating would they give you?

September 13, 2010

How many times have you used an employee’s performance review to find out how your performance is? Dan Rosensweig, CEO of Chegg, starts the conversation with the employee this way:

Hubris makes smart people look dumb

September 13, 2010

Hubris—that false sense of superiority—is a funny thing. It can afflict even highly intelligent leaders who never know they have it because they are afflicted. But there’s hope. If you attune yourself to hear warnings from below—that is, if you adopt a degree of humility, the opposite of hubris—you may absorb enough warnings to avert disaster.

Ask 12 questions before negotiating

September 13, 2010
Master negotiator Herb Cohen gives us questions you want to have answered before going into any negotiation:

It’s not how you listen but why

September 13, 2010
Are you listening carefully? Then you’re missing the point, say two young business leaders in their book on decision-making. The point isn’t how you listen but why.

What kind of leader are you?

September 13, 2010
Research conducted decades ago still offers insights into how leaders operate. Kurt Lewin’s 1939 study of leadership styles led the researchers to establish three basic types: 1. Authoritarian. 2. Participative or Democratic. 3. Delegative or Laissez Faire.

Want to create fear? 7 rules

August 18, 2010
Thanks to the readers of my blog, I’ve collected an excellent list of things to do if you’re a leader who wants to create a culture of fear in your organization. Not that the readers and commenters are suggesting that you actually do these things. With the idea in mind that a good way to learn leadership is to do the opposite of what really crappy leaders do, here is an edited list of readers’ suggestions:

Don’t be buffaloed

August 13, 2010
“It is too easy to let the person with great presentation or language skills buffalo you into thinking that they are better or more knowledgeable than someone else who might not necessarily have that particular set of skills,” says Robert W. Selander, who recently stepped down as CEO at MasterCard. Lesson: Don’t let style distract you from substance.

Dread speaking? 6 ways to overcome it

August 13, 2010

The South by Southwest festivals and conferences each spring feature many experts, some of whom are not expert speakers. One of them, Thom Singer, has written a book, The ABC’s of Speaking, geared especially for the shy expert. He has six recommendations: