Posts in category: Communications

Fear Uncertainty Doubt

Fear Uncertainty Doubt

Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt (FUD) is a common anti-clarity tactic. FUD ramps up emotional storms to obfuscate facts and stall rational discussions. Without these, we descend to emotionally charged mob mentality. Generally we still seem fearful of emotions in the...
Respond to covertly aggressive manipulation

Respond to covertly aggressive manipulation

A covertly, or passively, aggressive manipulator can be hard to handle for many reasons. They are great at using our own strengths against us. The lack of overt signs of aggression can cause confusion – our gut feel tells us something dodgy is going on, and yet...
McDonalds: our food, your questions

McDonalds: our food, your questions

McDonalds is running a “we’ll answer your questions” campaign in Australia at the moment. Some of the questions and answers are interesting, from a human interaction/social media perspective. Here are a couple of expected passive-aggressive...

Faulty thinking

Recently, someone I know had a dispute with their neighbour over the common fence that separates their properties. The fence blew down in a storm. Because of faulty thinking, what should have been a clear-cut situation degenerated into a cold war. Faulty thinking can...

CEOs out of touch with reality?

We have all heard tales of, and sometimes directly experienced, the rarefied world at the top of glass towers. Just how in-touch are the leaders who work in these spaces that can be so removed from the real world? Two recent media gaffes – by the respective CEOs...

Active listening: two ways

In meetings, briefings and lectures, we listen to learn facts. We focus on building an internal map of the incoming information. Feelings don’t come into this much. A policeman questioning witnesses would be more focused on the facts. Where, when, who, what and...

Facts vs opinions

Facts are empirically observable and testable. Discussions around facts require precise language. Tardy communications can crash airplanes! Opinions are malleable. They are open to interpretation. They can be presented as facts if we are not careful, or if we are...
Clustering

Clustering

Here’s a way to visualise the clustering (affinity) process used to sort large amounts of information into core themes; to enable understanding, and guide solution development. Here’s an information architecture example I whipped up. Clustering provides greater...
New social opportunities in online communications

New social opportunities in online communications

According to Wikipedia, “Nonverbal communication represents two-thirds of all communication.” Left image from Wikipedia.org Many of us are familiar with the loss of the non-verbal aspects of communications when online. Written text obviously does not carry tone of...

A safe place for challenging conversations

Challenging, sensitive, personal or confidential conversations are usually unavoidable whenever we gather project requirements, understand needs, and resolve problems/conflicts. Where we conduct these conversations can have a significant impact on the outcome. A safe...
Social tools and intimacy

Social tools and intimacy

We use a variety of social tools everyday – the phone, Facebook, email and chat for example. Each of these tools fosters different degrees of intimacy. Interactive Present/Immediate Anonymous Intimate Face-to-face meeting Phone or Skype call SMS/text, MMS messaging...
Spotting truth amongst the lies

Spotting truth amongst the lies

This blog post is inspired by Thorin Klosowski’s Lifehacker article: How to Spot Truth in the Sea of Lies, Rumors, and Myths on the Internet. “The internet is full of crap … Separating truth from fiction is equal parts a mental battle and diligent...

Don’t be the tool

Your business is a tool, to help you further your cause and enable your life. In trying to be more “business-like” we lose our authenticity as individuals. We start to talk like the tool. We relate to other people as a tool. We become the tool; just like many others...

A means to an end

Business is a tool. A means to an end. Business (the exchange of value between parties) is a human activity. There is nothing inherently right or wrong about this activity. It is also an end in itself. The waters of judgement get muddier (bloodier!) when we start...

Social drives evolution from within

Social connectivity (enabled by social media and 21st century global communications) disrupts silos and hierarchies. Social nets are woven through specialisation silos, over org charts, across geographically and socio-economically dispersed people. It is the mechanism...
Wonky interior why?

Wonky interior why?

This is the store front of a local health insurer. The “fashionably” wonky, frozen-in-the-process-of-falling-down wall feature/shelf, with the precariously balanced brochures all clustered down one sloping side, is a complete non sequitur to me. It is...
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