Regular communication with colleagues, superiors, and/or staff helps each team member contribute his or her best to the team effort. However, if you are a busy person you might see face-to-face communication as a time waster, especially when you're part of a large team. Using email or internal messaging applications may seem much easier than face-to-face communications, but it’s also much less effective. Investing time in socializing with your team will not only help you keep everyone in the loop on current projects and strategy, but will also create closer social ties that will lead to more responsible work.
When we think of meetings we usually picture a drawn-out discussion in an office or boardroom. But meetings don’t have to be bloated. Alternative meeting styles exist. They are more time-effective while still geared towards streamlining operations and workplace cohesion. I’ve laid out three of them for you here, adapted from the Tools for Leadership and Learning: Building a Learning Organization.
It’s nearly time for your big presentation. Your muscles are tense, your heart is racing, you’re clenching your jaw, and you have butterflies in your stomach.
But worst of all, the stress is causing you to breathe in shallow spurts, making it difficult to project your voice, which induces even more stress. In order to project your voice so that others can hear you, you need to breathe naturally.
Here are two quick breathing practices to help you calm your breathing before your next presentation.
2. Inhale slowly while counting to 5
3. Exhale slowly while counting to 5
Repeat this exercise several times.
Repeat this exercise several times. Each time, attempt to count to a higher number. Do not speed up your counting in order to do so.
The purpose of these exercises is to improve the placement of the air you inhale and to increase air capacity. The key to both of these exercises is keeping your shoulders from moving up as you inhale. Quite often, when we take deep breaths we tend to pick up and drop our shoulders as we inhale and exhale. Raising your shoulders actually forces you to take shorter breaths. When you inhale, place your hand directly above your stomach. You should feel the air first filling your diaphragm and then your chest. If you raise your shoulders when you inhale, you are only filling your chest cavity with air.
Once you’ve mastered these two breathing exercises, your pre-presentation jitters will be significantly reduced. Now you’ll be calm and focussed and ready to perform at your best.
When it comes to sending emails, readability is paramount. After all, people are busy. They don’t have time to be confused by reading your emails.
Like journalists who use the “inverted pyramid” to prioritize information in news-stories, making it easier for readers to receive the intended message, proper email formatting goes great lengths to make it easier for your readers to comprehend your intended message the first time.
Here are six tips to help your email recipients quickly read and easily understand your intended message.
Diana is President of The Soft Skills Group Inc. She is a senior training & development professional with 20 years of experience in delivery, design & consulting with Fortune 500 companies, Universities & Colleges in Canada, the USA, Mexico and Europe.