The more research I do on creative teams, the more I am convinced that listening is the key skill that we should be spending more time developing in our workplaces. For example, a 2018 study by Castro, Anseel, Kluger, Lloyd, and Turjeman-Levi and published in the journal Psychology of Aesthetics
Behind the Scenes, Communication skills, Critical thinking, Listening skills, Teams   , ,
    I’ve been following a conversation on Twitter this week about thank-you notes after interviews. rejecting anyone who doesn’t send a thank-you note is terrible hiring — Ask a Manager (@AskAManager) April 9, 2019 As noted by @AskAManager (Alison Green’s account—and if you’re not following her, you should!):
Career Advice  
A few weeks ago, I had a conversation with an executive at a tech company in Silicon Valley. He noted that new managers often need help dealing with ambiguity and complexity, especially in terms of human interaction. In a fast-paced, high-stress environment, it might be easier for a manager to
Critical thinking, Leadership  
Perspective-taking: How Leaders Connect with Others In my workshops and on this blog, I talk a lot about empathy—the ability to see the world from another person’s point of view. To be precise, empathy is the ability to recognize and acknowledge another person’s feelings. Empathy comes from the Greek root
Leadership, Listening skills  
Critical Thinking Skills: Your Toolbox for Innovation Critical thinking—it’s one of those terms that you see a lot in articles about skills for business success and innovation. While it gets covered in the business press plenty, it seems right now that critical thinking is woefully in short supply. That’s certainly
Communication skills, Leadership, Listening skills  
Think back to a moment in high school or college where you were assigned a group project for a class—a project where your grade was in some way dependent on your ability to produce something with a group of other people. What is your initial emotional response to that memory?
Communication skills, Teams   , , , ,
What Are Your Listening Filters? I’m a parent of three children, and one recent Saturday morning, one of my daughters had an epic meltdown. I sat next to her on the floor, asking her what the matter was, but as probably any parent of a young child can attest, when
Communication skills, Listening skills  
Four Tips for Better Communication at Work When we talk about communication skills, we so often focus on improving a person’s writing or speaking abilities. But we forget that half of any successful interaction is listening. It won’t matter how well you tell your story if the person at the
Communication skills   ,
The Blog is Back! After a reaaalllly long hiatus, I’m back on the blog as of next week. You’ll notice a change in focus in my posts. Previously, my blog posts were about words, language, and writing and geared towards my editing clients (and anyone who is interested in language).
Blog, Communication skills
What to Expect When You Work with an Editor Are you a writer? You need an editor. Everyone—and I mean everyone—can benefit from having a professional editor review their writing. But what level of editing might you need? What does an editor actually do? Read below to learn about the
Pre-writing Wrap-Up: A Case Study from My Own Writing My last three posts covered three questions you should ask yourself before you begin to write a major research paper. In this post, I provide a case study for how I answered these questions as I began to write my book,
Behind the Scenes, Writing Advice   ,
Tips for Pre-writing, Part 3: What Are the Top Three Things You Want Your Reader to Remember? This is the third and final post in my series on pre-writing. In part 1, I encouraged you to think about your audience. In part 2, I asked you what is the one
Writing Advice   ,
Tips for Pre-writing, Part 2: What is the Question You Want to Answer? This is my second post in a three-part series on three questions to ask before you begin to write. The first question, which I discussed last week, is: Who is your audience? This week’s question is: What
Writing Advice   ,
Tips for Pre-writing, Part 1: Three Questions Before You Begin Since my last few blog posts have been grammar- and punctuation-heavy, I thought I’d turn to a different facet of writing for my next series of posts: pre-writing. So often we think of the first draft as the moment we
ICYMI: Comma Questions, the Entire Series This week was my last post in my Comma Questions series. If you’d like to read the entire series in order, here they are: Part 1: The Serial Comma Part 2: Commas with Independent Clauses Part 3: Commas with Dependent Clauses Part 4: Commas
Grammar and Punctuation  
Comma Questions: Bonus! Commas with Appositives So, I lied. I said last week that my third post on commas was going to be my last. But then I visited a local restaurant chain that had a typo on a marketing poster on the wall, and I realized that there was
Grammar and Punctuation   ,
Comma Questions, Part 3: Commas with Dependent Clauses I’m back after a two-week hiatus. I’m so grateful to have so many terrific clients who have been keeping me busy with editing jobs, but that has meant I haven’t attended to my blog. This is going to be the final post
Grammar and Punctuation   ,
Comma Questions, Part 2: Commas with Independent Clauses Last week, I discussed the serial comma (a.k.a. the Oxford comma), which is used in a list of three or more things: My favorite ice cream flavors are chocolate, coffee, and mint chip. Today, I’m going to address the use of commas
Grammar and Punctuation   ,
Comma Questions, Part 1: The Serial Comma Thank you to the readers who have responded to my posts and suggested topics. Today’s post, the first in a series, is in response to a reader request to talk about . . . the comma. For such an innocuous-looking mark, the comma
Grammar and Punctuation  
Happy Galentine’s Day! (A Primer on Portmanteau Words) Today is Galentine’s Day! From Etsy shop CharmInkDesign. In honor of this special day, I’m gifting you a very special installment of Word Nerd. In this occasional series, I delve into the sometimes-surprising stories behind the English language. What is Galentine’s Day,
Word Nerd  
Call Me Mrs. Dash (Comma Queen Was Already Taken): a Post on Hyphens and Dashes Greetings, friends, and welcome to another blog post on the finer points of American English punctuation. Today, I’m going to focus on hyphens and dashes, by reader request. If you have a burning question about
Grammar and Punctuation, Writing Advice   , ,
As an Aside: Parentheses (A User’s Guide) This week’s post comes from a reader’s suggestion on Facebook: Mike writes, “May I just admire your use, early in this post, of both parentheses within parentheses and a suspended hyphen! These are probably techniques that some readers would like to learn about—both
Grammar and Punctuation, Writing Advice   ,
Aggressive Passive: Thoughts on the Passive Voice This past fall, I taught an Honors undergraduate seminar for mostly first- and second-year students. One of the goals of the seminar was to develop the students’ writing skills, so I assigned weekly writing assignments and two papers to give them lots of
Grammar and Punctuation, Writing Advice  

January 16, 2018

What Does an Editor Do?

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What Does an Editor Do? What does an editor do? When you work with an editor, what should you expect? But in the very nicest way, I promise. Perhaps you are thinking you might want to hire an editor for a project. Or, maybe you’re just curious about what editors
Behind the Scenes   ,
A Word About the News: Capricious Today’s Washington Post features an analysis of U.S. District Judge William Alsup’s injunction against the rescission of the DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) program. Reporter Derek Hawkins states, “Alsup called that conclusion [that the program was illegal and therefore put the administration at
Word About the News, Word Nerd
What Do Dried Fruit and Mozart Have in Common? Welcome to my blog! To celebrate the launch, this post is first in a series I’m calling “Word Nerd.” I have a confession: I’m a total etymology geek. That is, I love to delve into the history of words. (No, not
Word Nerd   ,

January 6, 2018

Blog coming–check back on January 9!

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Blog coming–check back on January 9! My blog launches this Tuesday, January 9, so check back then to find out what a tasty dried fruit and Mozart have in common. Hint: it has to do with language.