By working on communication skills, anybody can become a competent talker. Here, we continue to examine ways to correct common pitfalls with Marvin Brown, an expert in business communication strategies and author of How to Meet and Talk to Anyone, Anywhere, Anytime: Simple Strategies for Great Conversations. If you missed yesterday’s advice, click here.
“Being a great talker is a learnable skill,” claims Marvin Brown, an expert in business communication strategies and author of How to Meet and Talk to Anyone, Anywhere, Anytime: Simple Strategies for Great Conversations. “All it takes is a few techniques and a little practice.”
Ready to hone your abilities? Brown offers these suggestions for solving common communication pitfalls:
Overuse of clichés and fillers such as “you know” and “like.”
Sure, hiring managers are busy people who get swamped with many applications for any given position, but can they really decide who to pursue further based on 140 characters or less? According to this article, some hirers are giving it a try. Twitter resumes, also known as twesumes, are becoming the ultimate elevator pitch – a fast way for candidates to make an impression. They are especially gaining momentum in creative fields and for jobs that require social media savvy.
While experts routinely stress the importance of networking, many people make excuses to avoid it – especially during the summer. Rather than rationalize that you’ll make a full-scale effort in the fall, go with the flow of the season. You might be surprised at the results.
A great thing about warmer weather is the chance to get outdoors. Is your alma mater hosting a picnic or your neighborhood having a block party? The setting may help you to relax and mingle more than usual (and being able to network without having to wear business attire is certainly appealing).
We’ve all heard of the “old boys’ network” in which men help one another make connections and formulate ideas. Taking a cue from their camaraderie, women are starting to create their own all-female support systems. Journalist Pamela Ryckman explores this movement in her new book Stiletto Network: Inside the Women's Power Circles That Are Changing the Face of Business. Here, she shares some suggestions on constructing your own girl-power group:
If you are in the process of job hunting, International Update Your References Week (May 5-11) is a great time to examine your choices, ensure contact information is correct, and perhaps even give the people you’ve chosen a status update or a new copy of your résumé. (You have already asked permission to use them as references, right?) Be sure you have each person’s name, job title, company name, and address.