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When you and I connect with each other, work tends to unfold with a measure of grace. I suddenly get excited about working with you. You more deeply enjoy working with me. And we accelerate business success along the way!

I cannot MAKE you connect with me. But here are the Top 7 personal behaviors that I know will foster the possibility of connection with absolutely anyone:

7. Express heartfelt gratitude

We long to be seen and heard. We love to be acknowledged for our work and creativity. Not with platitudes and clichés. No, with heartfelt appreciation. When I know that you mean it, I will move mountains for you.

6. Show emotion

When you let me know what stirs you, I will be stirred by you. And I want to be stirred by you.

5. Shift out of neutral

When you stay in neutral I experience you as nice, pleasant, likable – and I will not terribly much care. Shift out of neutral by owning your point of view. State it – and allow me to have a different point of view. Now we’re talking!

4. Take a social risk

Show more of what you normally don’t show. Surprise me with what I don’t yet know about you. It will allow me to do the same. Our connection will get real.     

3. Cultivate your light touch

Playfulness fosters a sense of joy. Heavyhandedness doesn’t. In all situations, find a way of communicating with a light touch. I will so look forward to engaging with you.

2. Give energy

There are energy-givers and there are energy-takers.  Be an energy-giver. Energize yourself daily. Use energizing language. Meet me with enthusiasm. The alternative isn’t pretty – and it’s an instant connection-killer.   

1. Show up

When you are with me, BE WITH ME. Not in the phone call that happened an hour ago. Not in the meeting that is about to come. Be fully here, in this room, in this moment, in the flow of things, with me. The rest will take care of itself.