3 Master communication lessons from Barbara Walters

3 Master communication lessons from Barbara Walters

Barbara Walters won 12 Emmys

The trailblazer of interviewing, who won 12 Emmy awards over a 5-decade career, teaches us 3 master lessons on how to leverage any conversation to your advantage.

Fairness

“Barbara Walters’s superpower was fairness”, writes Matt Zoller Seitz (critic & writer for Vulture and New York). He continues, “Her subjects trusted her to give them as fair a shake as she could, even if she disapproved of what they did, said, or stood for.”

She exemplified an open mind and the ability to listen to the nuance of any situation.

Relaxed ambiance

“Barbara Walters, in my estimation, really has the quality of reaching through to the person,” Mike Wallace said. “She will put the person sufficiently at ease and it’s a remarkable gift.”

Looking at her interviews from every U.S. president and first lady from the Nixons to the Obamas to a wide range of celebrities and sports figures she creates rapport through her content and delivery.

They said yes to her when they wouldn’t say yes to anyone else because they liked the atmosphere Walters created onscreen.

Trust

Trust requires these three components working together: trust in yourself, trust in the process, and do your homework.

Walters nails this triad. And THEN she goes after the tough questions!

Excerpt from a Walters’ interview, “You’re a New York Times best-selling author, you’re an accomplished and celebrated concert pianist, and a three-time Academy Award–winning actor. Why the porn?’”

Bonus Strategy:

Ok – she also plays into the subject’s ego. She usually gave three compliments, and then went in for the kill.

Barbara Walters, who died recently at the age of 93, left a legacy about how to set the stage for a meaningful dialogue.

#communication   #speakforyourself   #KarenCortellReisman   #BarbaraWalters

Small Talk Desert

Small Talk Desert

Are we in a conversational crisis?

Even before the pandemic the emphasis has been on digital communication. During the pandemic you may have experienced minimal conversation especially in person.

Now you might be feeling the pain of resuming small talk back in the office.

Recently…

Jim and I meet in-person with our financial advisor group after two years of periodic virtual meetings. I find myself saying, just seconds after sitting down, “Ok, what’s our plan? Do we need to review, reframe, revisit…?”

Tommy replies with a smile, “First… how are you? What’s going on with your work and family?”

Oh… that’s right … I forget the chatting part of our visit.

What is the value of small talk?

According to Fast Company, “From the polite chitchat among coworkers that eases the start of a stressful meeting to building powerful bridges at networking events, small talk has always been an important ‘social lubricator’ that builds trust and relationships across cultures—even more so for early-career professionals after graduation.”

Is small talk a waste of time?

You might say “yes”. Covid created a time warp. Namely – 30 minutes is the new hour. You’re busy, stressed and want results… now. You only have so much Attention Economy.

And yet.

Small talk is not a waste of time.

Think about an interaction you’ve had with a barista. Smiling, making eye contact and exchanging a few sentences while ordering your Venti Chai has been found to boost happiness and feelings of belonging.

A quick chat with someone you barely know can uplift your mood or avert feelings of loneliness.

A few brief interactions help gauge the mood of a room and the tone of a discussion.

Professionally, small talk presents opportunities to get to know and hear your clients. You may learn something new about the customer that you can then use in later conversation, or one interaction may turn into someone signing a deal with your company.

Most of all … according to psychologist Susan Pinker, social interaction (including small talk) is the #1 secret to living a longer life.

So, how are you? What’s going on with your family and friends these days?

 

#communication    #SpeakForYourself     #KarenCortellReisman   #SmallTalkDesert

Photo Copyright: preserver

 

The Best 1st Impression Tip You’re Not Doing

The Best 1st Impression Tip You’re Not Doing

You may think that the top ways to make a great first impression revolve around what you say. Nope. You may think that your initial impression on others has to do with how you’re dressed. Nope. Finally, you may think your best way to create a positive impression is your eye contact and smile. Wrong again.

Your Top Tip on making a great first impression

Your posture.

All of the above strategies help create rapport with others. But, your posture speaks volumes. And it’s the first way you clock in with others as you enter into a room.

Why are we not getting this right?!

I include me in this question. All of us make mistakes regarding our posture! The culprit: our blessed cell phones.

“Text neck” is a term you might have heard. You’re hunching over to look at your phone compared with holding your head upright.

In a NYT article by Melinda Wenner Moyer titled “Text Neck, Pinkie Pain and Other Ways Phones Can Wreck Our Bodies” she claims “Health providers say they are seeing more patients than ever with pain and joint ailments in their hands, necks, shoulders and upper backs — and that mobile phones are most likely playing a part.”

In addition to neck pain, you’re missing your opportunity of taking advantage of the best way to make a great first impression.

Why posture wins The First Impression Game

Think about people in your world that you hold in high esteem. I’ve ask this question across North America at speaking engagements. Then I ask my audiences, “How does this person you admire walk into a room and interact with others? Are they slumped over or do they have great posture?” Answers from across time (100% of the time): “They have great posture!  They walk tall.”

Yes, your eye contact, your smile, your conversations are also excellent ways to make a great first impression. But the way you stand and hold your body, OR sit in a zoom room, begins the process of creating that positive impact.

Author: Karen Cortell Reisman is Founder of Speak For Yourself®, a communication consulting firm, and the author of 2 books on how to communicate. She lives in Dallas, Texas and will try to put down her phone and walk tall when entering any room.

Thank you to C. K. and your inquiry and our conversation today for this blog’s inspiration.

© 2022 Karen Cortell Reisman, All rights reserved

Avoid Networking Nightmares

Avoid Networking Nightmares

“Your presentation really spoke to me!” said Jo, an attendee at a speech I gave a few days ago in Carlsbad, CA on How To Communicate Like Duct Tape.

Jo continued, “At the cocktail party last night I asked Peggy about her family. I was being polite. For 15 minutes Peggy talked about her children.”

What’s wrong with this scenario?

Peggy has committed three communication fatal errors!

Networking Nightmare #1: Peggy’s conversation is one-sided. It’s a solid 15 minutes of The Peggy’s Family Show. Jo says nothing.

Networking Nightmare #2: Peggy is boring. She’s providing a grocery list of data about her kids.

Networking Nightmare #3 (the biggest issue here): Jo does not have children and Peggy’s monologue creates a vacuum empty feeling for Jo.

How to avoid these networking nightmares

Networking Rule #1: Know Thy Audience.

In the presentation Jo resonated with – I spoke about nailing down the demographics of whom you’re speaking to. Her experience with Peggy shows the nuance of how vital it is to put yourself in the shoes of the listener… as you talk. If YOUR conversation has NOTHING to do with the recipient, then switch topics.

Networking Rule #2: Be Compelling.

Don’t do a grocery list, aka data dump, on your kids, last vacation or upcoming business venture. A compelling presentation is never just about the data. Come prepared to share a fun story about one child/grandchild, or one mishap from your vacation, or one testimonial story from your latest startup.

Networking Rule #3: Listen More.

Try to be 50-50 with your conversations. Ask questions. Find something in common with your chat buddy. Be a giver and a taker.

Self-disclosure here – I have to work on Rule #3. I’m aware, especially with Robin and Judy – my work-out and walking buddies, that I can dominate the conversation. I always have tons of stories to share! So… these rules also apply to your interactions with dear friends/colleagues and not just at networking opportunities.

You can avoid alienating others!

Author: Karen Cortell Reisman is Founder of Speak For Yourself®, a communication consulting firm, and the author of 2 books on how to communicate. She lives in Dallas, Texas and thanks Robin and Judy for listening to all her stories across time!

Did you know we offer a free 20-minute communication consultation?

Source: thanks @Jo Riddle for this blog’s inspiration.

© 2022 Karen Cortell Reisman, All rights reserved

How Do You Communicate More Accurately?

How Do You Communicate More Accurately?

When was the last time you could not find your phone? (about 10 minutes ago when I started writing this blog)

When did you ask yourself, “Did I lock the car?” (a couple of days ago when I went grocery shopping)

When did you wonder, “Did I RSVP to that zoom event?” (let me check past emails…I’ll get back to you)

Autopilot vs. Observational Awareness

You are not going nuts (nor am I!). Experts say you don’t recall doing these day-to-day tasks because you do them on autopilot while multi-tasking.

Conversely, Observational Awareness means being present, mindful and focused on what you’re doing.

How increasing Your Observational Awareness Can Improve Your Communication Skills

Do you think you also put your communication skills on autopilot while multi-tasking? Do a quick check – how much do you remember about yesterday’s conversations with your Project Managers/board members/spouse/kids?

Ways to Increase your communication Observational Awareness:

  • Listen more than you talk
  • Ask questions
  • Be mindful
  • Stay focused – try not to multi-task
  • Take notes if possible – or add the info later on whatever system works for you

Benefits of heightened Observational Awareness:

  • Saves you time
  • Increases your knowledge of others
  • Creates a more accurate picture of shared comprehension
  • Heightens your ability to understand the communication nuances – what’s really going on

The fact that you communicate digitally, informally, and maybe even formally every day means that you might be on autopilot.

Your homework:

  • Be more observationally aware of what you are saying and what you are hearing.
  • AND try to remember where you put your phone.

© 2021 Karen Cortell Reisman, All rights reserved

Karen Cortell Reisman book on sellingKaren Cortell Reisman, M.S., author of 2 books and President of Speak For Yourself®, works with decision makers on how to speak with gravitas. It’s all in how you speak for yourself. Karen also speaks about her cousin, #AlbertEinstein, in a message about hope, resilience and brassieres.

Want a customized Speak For Yourself® live or virtual workshop on how to communicate formally, informally, and electronically?

Did you know we offer a free 20-minute communication consultation?

Email Karen@SpeakForYourself.com

Photo credit: www.123rf.com/photo_151708452_french-bulldog-dog-binoculars-searching-looking-and-observing-with-care.html?vti=lkdzanpn4rgldzula0-1-10

“Conclusion Jumping” is NOT an Olympic Event

“Conclusion Jumping” is NOT an Olympic Event

But we are all gold medalists of this sport.

You give a good speech. One audience member nods off. You leap to, “I’m a bad presenter.”

You email an interested prospect. You get no reply. You leap to, “They’re not buying.”

You lose your sunglasses. You leap to, “The car valet service stole them.”

  • No. You are a good speaker. That audience member had chemo four days earlier.
  • No. Your email pitch resonates but the buyer is overwhelmed.
  • No. You discover two days later that your sunglasses are hiding under the passenger seat.

Welcome to a sport you play without even practicing: “Conclusion Jumping”™ … the art of deciding something without having all the facts.

When you do “Conclusion Jumping”™ you create communication obstacles. With insufficient information you assume (my least favorite word) an unwarranted conclusion that may negate your objectives/goals/message.

Train your brain to:

  • Slow down your reasoning process instead of immediately accepting that your intuition is necessarily true.
  • Collect as much information as possible before forming an initial hypothesis.
  • Look for the nuance. Is there background data that can help explain the current situation?

Ok. Go ahead. Practice for the High Jump. Or the Long Jump. Work on your Gymnastics Vault Jump.

Just don’t Jump to Conclusions.

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Thanks to @DailyWalker for this blog’s inspiration.

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© 2021 Karen Cortell Reisman, All rights reserved

Karen Cortell Reisman book on sellingKaren Cortell Reisman, M.S., author of 2 books and President of Speak For Yourself®, works with decision makers on how to speak with gravitas. It’s all in how you speak for yourself. Karen also speaks about her cousin, #AlbertEinstein, in a message about hope, resilience and brassieres.

Want a customized Speak For Yourself® live or virtual workshop on how to communicate formally, informally, and electronically?

Did you know we offer a free 20-minute communication consultation?

Email Karen@SpeakForYourself.com

Source: https://effectiviology.com/jumping-to-conclusions/

Copyright: <a href=’https://www.123rf.com/profile_belchonock’>Olga Yastremska</a>

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