Category: Communication

  • Carving Words

    When I first started public speaking, I admired other speakers who were able to “wing it”, coming up with an incredible speech on the fly, in the moment. Somehow these speeches seemed more relevant and authentic, but also more impossible for me to ever achieve. Unfortunately (so I thought), I wasn’t very good at winging […]

  • Communication Wants To Be Human

    When email first came on the scene, we thought we’d arrived. No more pesky phone calls, just the information you need, when you want to read it! Then texting arrived to the party, eliminating the need to ever call anyone again (and eliminating the need to move to actually walk into a different room to […]

  • Brand Love: Maallust

    The best brands don’t just look cool, but they tell a story. I saw a great example of this during a recent trip. While visiting Holland earlier this summer, we decided to visit the Maallust Brewery in Veenhuizen. Our only exposure to the brewery was a brochure at a local restaurant and thought it looked […]

  • The Gift of Silence

    In his 1994 interview with Charlie Rose, Fred Rogers (famous for his children’s show Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood) emphasized repeatedly the importance of margins and silence, in life and in communication. In speaking of his (then) new book, he explains: “This book is about… the white space between the paragraphs, which I think is more important […]

  • The Medium is the Message

    An important but often overlooked key to effective communication is how your listener receives what you have to say. Often we carefully rehearse our own words and stories, but fail to think about our audience’s posture and mindset. Is your audience ready to hear what you have to say? Of course, when the stakes are […]

  • How to Sell Your Idea

    One of the most difficult parts of bringing a new idea to life often isn’t coming up with the idea itself, it’s getting others on board. Just because your idea makes perfect sense to you doesn’t mean that anyone else will instantly get it. Helping people cross that bridge requires a lot of effort from […]

  • Jefferson Would Have Loved Twitter

    Words are more abundant than ever. While we probably read fewer books than we used to as a culture, we read constantly.  Social platforms provide an opportunity to hone our communication skills by their built-in constraints. Can you persuade, educate, entertain someone using only 140 characters? While constant reductionism can reduce meaningful discussion to a […]

  • Marathon bands and the message you’re sharing

    One of the highlights of a marathon is all the supporters in come out to cheer runners on. As the race weaves through the neighbourhoods of a city (just like Winnipeg this past weekend), many people setup music or even put together a band to play from the front yard to energize and entertain the […]

  • Speak to Show You’re Listening

    In crowded airspace, some of the best, most well-considered voices too often stay silent. Why bother adding to the noise? If you’re not willing to join the yelling match, how will your voice ever be heard? You might not have the loudest voice, and might not have access to the biggest loudspeaker, but that doesn’t […]

  • Always Have Something to Say

    If you want to be a great communicator, it’s important to always have something to say.  I learned this the hard way.  Many years ago I traveled in Chile with a Christian missionary group. One thing we did a lot was share in church services, and often without a lot of advance warning. One afternoon […]