At a seminar this past weekend, I met several people, but had a great talk with one woman in particular and looked forward to getting to know her better. Later, I was standing at the sink in the women’s bathroom when I saw this very same woman leave a stall and walk out.
Without washing her hands.
Now, I’m not a germophobe or anything, but I kinda draw the line at washing your hands after using the restroom. I mean, come on. We live in a civilized society people.
Needless to say, this changed my view of this new acquaintance. That is, until the next morning, when I was forced to use the handicapped stall since it was the only one available. I entered, shut the door, and realized it came fully equipped with a sink, soap and paper towels.
I was guilty of making an assumption based on incomplete information. Continue reading: “Don’t Make Assumptions: Especially in the Bathroom”
One of the first times I watched video of myself presenting I was shocked to find I didn’t smile. At all. For the entire six hours.
I’m not sure why I was shocked, since, it appears that I’ve had a smiling problem for quite some time. (Yes, that’s me, down below.)
Just last year, a good friend and colleague called me out for my LinkedIn photo. “You look scary,” she said. And she’s probably right.
Here’s the thing: smiling is overrated. Continue reading: “Smiling is Overrated”
“So, tell me a little bit about your work.”
Most people hear this and launch into an elevator speech about the services they and their organizations provide. Here at FORTE, as Corey pointed out last week, that invitation usually prompts us to describe all the “services” we DON’T provide. We don’t teach you how to spot a liar. We don’t manipulate people or attempt to create “instant rapport.” We don’t gauge the suitability of a potential juror based on body odor.
(YES, some people do. Read the blog post. I’ll wait.)
We go overboard to make the point that you can’t figure out what people are thinking based on their nonverbal cues.
YET, we read nonverbals all the time. Continue reading: “Go Ahead. Read My Body Language.”
When I was working for Sari, I always had to explain to potential clients that no, we didn’t do the standard “body language stuff.” And by “body language stuff” I meant that we didn’t teach you how to read other people. Yet that never sat right with me, because it is essential to understand and adapt to others, which, of course, means observing other people. This paradox was always difficult to explain. But I think I finally figured it out. So I made a huge mistake and told Sari, who then ordered me to write this blog. (Don’t kid yourself. You don’t have to be her employee for her to boss you around.)
As a hobbyist fiction writer, the best bit of advice I ever received was to get the judge out of my head so I could tell my story. Writers are notoriously hard on themselves, and yet creativity doesn’t happen until you let go of all the judgment. You’ve got to be able to look at your writing with a discerning eye, but not a judgmental one. I was reminded of this when my partner Allen and I were hanging out with my niece Danielle and her husband the other day, talking about how to deal with different types of people. I said, “The trick is to be a good judge of people without actually judging people.” And that’s when it hit me: Nonverbal intelligence isn’t about reading other people. It’s about labeling behavior without stereotyping the person. Continue reading: “Judgy McJudgerson”
What’s the difference between influence and manipulation?
Um. One sounds nicer?
Yes, I know. People want more influence. And many people think nonverbal communication skills will lead to more influence. Heck, even I’ve bandied around the term influence before in my blogs and workshops.
But recently I’ve come to the realization that influence is just a fancy word for manipulation.
Continue reading: “Influence is Just a Fancy Word for Manipulation”