By: Tyler Dzuba
Have you ever tried to have a conversation, but keep getting derailed for one of these two reasons?
Let me share how some savvy from the world of linguistics can help you communicate better in these cases. (Spoiler: try on the opposite conversational style, even if it feels a little rude to you!)
Did you know that across cultures and languages, people on average notice a silence of only 200 milliseconds—just a fifth of a second!—as a discernible gap in conversation? That’s literally a blink of an eye.
Here’s the thing, though: what we do with those gaps in conversation might get us in trouble depending on who we’re talking with. The research in conversation analysis tells us that individual people fall on a spectrum between high-involvement...
Image Credit: Palo Alto City Library
Four years ago, the day after the election, I walked into the offices of a company that is an international powerhouse in the communications industry. Several months before, I had been scheduled to be onsite, offering anti-bias workshops for executives who had flown in from various regional offices across the U.S. A long planning process had occurred but not one of the creative teams had prepared communications in the event Donald Trump became the newly elected president. Not one. Everyone was running in circles trying to figure out what to do. Everything seemed blurry and surreal. Regardless of political stance, most people were shocked by the outcome. That day was a mess, an incredibly unproductive, emotion, and confusion-filled mess.
We can’t know what additional surprises this election will hold, but we can learn from recent experience. Today is, with so much attention on the attributes and expectations of leaders, also a...