Achieving a Position of Influence in Your Legal Career

Why is it that two attorneys can present the same idea to the same audience, but only one wins them over? Whether you are an outside or in-house counsel, building a position of influence with your clients or colleagues is not simply a function of your title, years of experience, or charisma. An attorney's influence is built systematically, one step at a time, but often in subtle ways. As a result, most write off influence as some ethereal concept too amorphous to be explained, let alone taught. Nonsense.

Why telling a good story makes you more persuasive

Adding a story to a presentation may seem like simple entertainment, but it does far more than just wake up a tired audience. When you tell a good story, you change your connection to the audience and how they perceive you, and that change renders the audience more likely to accept your presentation’s substance. But telling a story is just as much science as art. […]

Sit side-by-side to build better rapport with clients or colleagues

In client services, most people working one-on-one tend to sit right across from each other. The theory is that when meeting with someone important, confidence comes from looking someone in the eye, which can only happen when two people face each other.  That, combined with the common television image of a manager speaking to an underling from behind an intimidating desk, make most people forget that there are other–and better–options for building rapport.  […]

Why we overestimate our value at work, and how it impacts our teams

Feeling under-appreciated at work is a recipe for dissatisfaction, and feelings of frustration with fellow team members can slowly escalate into a toxic work atmosphere. But as Janet Choi explains, the human brain is actually programmed to overestimate our personal contribution. This phenomenon is based on a psychological tendency known as “availability bias,” and by properly understanding it, good managers can help teams avoid this under-appreciation trap and work better together. […]

Control an audience’s attention by harnessing silence

Silence is a powerful tool for a great communicator. A bit of silence can be as effective as a shout for getting an audience’s attention, yet many people find pauses so uncomfortable that they run over them with more content or, worse yet, fillers like “ums” and “uhs.” Instead of being uncomfortable with silence, learn how and when to use pauses effectively to control the audience’s attention. With a little practice, you will learn to savor every silence. […]

Good to great: raise the bar on your presentation two slides at a time

In our series Good to Great, we highlight simple tips and tools for advanced speakers looking to bring their communications from a 9 to a 10. This week’s tip comes from PowerPoint expert Dave Paradi, who has advice on how to avoid feeling overwhelmed when trying to refine and improve a presentation. The trick: focus on raising the bar two slides at a time. […]

6 tips for getting kids’ cooperation that apply just as well to adults

Parent coach Shelly Phillips highlights six great communication tips for getting children to cooperate in a recent article. After reading the list, it became clear that with a few tweaks, the list is also a great source of communication tips for managing adults, as the psychology underlying the tips tends to hold true at all ages.  […]