Don’t let avoidable mistakes like these affect your “professional” image. Take a look at these tips from Patrick Lentin at The Cusp and always feel confident the right message is being expressed in your business emails.


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Be a Better Conversationalist With These 10 TED Tips


We all can use a refresher course on how to talk to one another. Talking “at” someone is very different from talking “with” them. Read Kat Boogaard’s post from OfficeNinjas where she shares some actionable tips she learned about in a recent TED talk. I’m going to try them out today. How about you?

Be a Better Conversationalist With These 10 TED Tips

Conversations. They’re a huge part of our daily lives. But have you ever stopped to notice how terrible we’ve all become at simply talking to each other?

Blame technology. Blame social media. Blame the fact that we all have the ceaseless urge to hold our iPhones in front of our faces 24/7. Tell yourself whatever you need to sleep at night, but the point remains the same: conversation is a dying art.

Giving Your Vision A Voice. Let me help you express your message.

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Not sure what to think about something? Good


This re-blog from Tom Roston at Ideas.Ted.Com definitely gives some food for thought. There is quite a balance between being bored with an idea and being so totally confused you move on.

Not sure what to think about something? Good

His main task has been to communicate ideas or brands in ways that prompt people to buy his clients’ products. So it might seem counterintuitive for him to advocate confounding his audience. But, of course, the answer is in the balance. After all, there’s a difference between stupefying people and engaging them. “The purpose of ambiguity is to make you question information,” he says. “Ambiguity initiates thought.”

As a freelance writer, I’ve always thought I needed to be concise and clear in all my writings to capture an audience. This post really made me look at things with a new perspective. What do you think? I’d love to have more conversation about this unique look at an old subject.

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How to Stop Anyone From Constantly Interrupting You—Including Your Boss


Re-posted from Lisa B. Marshall of Quick and Dirty Tips

It’s important to learn the techniques for reducing interruptions, especially in business. This post gives some great ideas on how to accomplish it:

How to Stop Anyone From Constantly Interrupting You – Including Your Boss

Interrupting is a bad habit that needs correction, but depending on the reason, or the degree of relationship, it needs to be handled differently. As I talked about previously, some people interrupt because they’re direct, some because they’re creative, and some because they actually want to affirm you and be supportive. Some have just developed a bad habit, or feel they must assert themselves. And then there are the bullies.

Allow me to discuss a few different ways to stop someone who interrupts:

One way to address the behavior, a bit indirectly, is to simply let the person interrupt, then repeat again exactly what you started saying, in a polite, respectful tone. (Read: no sarcasm or anger!)

How do you handle those habitual “interrupters?” I’d love to hear your proven methods.

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5 Stupid Ways to Tick Off Your Assistant


You’ve made it!

You’re a successful VIP, an executive in a high-level position at a top-rated company, or maybe an entrepreneur.

You spend most days meeting with big-name clients or building relationships to acquire new ones. You’ve developed exceptional skills for putting together the best presentations and proposals to drive business and increase revenues.


But let me ask you a question?

Do you do this alone? Or do you have help?

Most accomplished executives I know have a trusted assistant by their side to quietly and unobtrusively make them look good. Exceptional ones are hard to find. And they’re even harder to keep. While you may have a long list of credentials proving otherwise, it’s quite possible you’re not as smart as you think if you’ve ever done any of these things and ticked off your assistant:

  1. Forgot your manners. Think about it, have you ever greeted your assistant by spouting out directions instead of “hello”? When was the last time you said “please” or “thank you”? Do you always use the intercom or have you been guilty of yelling her name out the door?  Simple gestures perhaps, but ignoring common courtesies can be insulting and demeaning. 
  2. Do-overs. Your assistant expects that some changes can’t be avoided, but don’t be one of those bosses who changes his mind about everything at the last minute. She may make the job look easy, but every task requires a significant amount of time and coordination. Whether it’s a plane reservation or a client proposal, throwing an offhanded do-over at her regularly is disrespectful and likely to tick her off.
  3. Keeping appointments waiting. As a busy executive, there are going to be many scheduling conflicts. Your assistant will spend countless hours attempting to organize your day efficiently and accurately. Every time you’re late, she’ll be put in the unenviable position of making excuses for you or start the process again in rescheduling.
  4. Micromanaging. In order for the partnership to operate efficiently, you must allow your assistant to complete the tasks assigned in the order and manner she sees fit. When you ask about the status of a project five minutes after you’ve given it to her, or worse, take care of it yourself, you’re saying you don’t trust her to do the job right. 
  5. Overuse technology. Advances in technology have blurred the lines between our business and personal lives. While you may pay your assistant to be available whenever you need her, she really won’t appreciate you texting her while she’s grocery shopping or putting her child to bed. Try to respect her personal time, and she’ll be more focused on handling whatever you need during business hours.


Image Courtesy of  Ambro at