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The Communication Clinic: 99 Proven Cures for the Most Common Business Mistakes

Book Description

The proven prescription for powerful business communication

Sending an email plagued with typos. Rushing through a presentation. Never saying “no.” Under-dressing for a company event. What do these all have in common? Bad messaging.

The Communication Clinic is a comprehensive, commonsense guide to getting the job of your dreams and presenting yourself in the best light through your writing, speaking, body language, and overall appearance. In no time, you’ll begin recognizing the subtle mistakes that are holding you back, and taking steps to overcome them.

The Communication Clinic provides the proven prescription for:

• Writing effective emails
• Developing a professional presence
• Mastering verbal and nonverbal communication
• Using social media for career success
• Designing and delivering powerful presentations
• Being assertive (but not aggressive) in person and online
• Managing conflict


Business interactions are increasingly done over digital platforms and across traditional boundaries. Never has clear communication been more critical. Unskilled communicators can create awkward situations, negatively affect business profitability, and even end their own careers with a few poorly chosen keystrokes.

Consult The Communication Clinic and you’ll show everyone that you understand your job, that you care about your career, and that you work well with others —all of which come across loud and clear through effective communication.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. Title Page
  3. Copyright Page
  4. Dedication
  5. Contents
  6. Acknowledgments
  7. Introduction
  8. PART I | BUSINESS WRITING IN A DIGITAL WORLD
    1. 1. “I Didn’t Know That!” The Essentials of Good Business Writing
    2. 2. Getting Started: Five Ways to Overcome Writer’s Block
    3. 3. Imperfect Writing for Perfect Results
    4. 4. Looks Count: Make Your Writings Visually Appealing
    5. 5. These Bullets Won’t Kill Your Writing
    6. 6. Simple Words Are Not for Simple People
    7. 7. Do Not Use Contractions(Don’t Worry, I Didn’t Mean It!)
    8. 8. “But I Didn’t Mean It That Way!” How to Eliminate a Harsh Tone in Your Emails
    9. 9. Eliminate Those Extra Words
    10. 10. Email Rules: Don’t Drive Your Readers to Distraction!
    11. 11. What’s in an Email Address? A Lot!
    12. 12. Grab Your Reader’s Attention: Effective Use of Email Subject Lines
    13. 13. In the Beginning . . . Salutations Set the Tone for Emails and Letters
    14. 14. Saying Goodbye: Suggestions for Closing Your Emails
    15. 15. Reasons You Make Mistakes in Email, and Proofreading Solutions
    16. 16. How Do I Become a Better Writer? Let Me Count the Ways . . .
    17. 17. “It’s What You Wrote!” How Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Others Can Kill Your Career
    18. 18. Improve Your Writing—and Reputation—Through Blogging
    19. 19. Texting for Business? It Is Still Writing!
    20. 20. Don’t Write That! The Top 10 Grammar Gripes (and Other Errors)
  9. PART II | PRESENTATION SKILLS: TALK YOUR WAY TO THE TOP
    1. 21. Presentation Panic—Take These Steps to Avoid Running off the Stage!
    2. 22. More Ways to Overcome Stage Fright
    3. 23. Don’t Ramble: Use the Speech Organizer
    4. 24. It Would Have Been a Great Speech—for a Different Audience
    5. 25. Openings and Closings Matter: Start with Strength, End with Impact
    6. 26. Story Time: Use Tales to Engage with Your Audience
    7. 27. Write the Presentation the Right Way
    8. 28. Polishing Your Delivery: Pay Attention to the Details
    9. 29. Don’t Put Your Audience to Sleep: Speak with Authority
    10. 30. Eliminate Filler Words: Um, You Know, Okay
    11. 31. Don’t Let a Microphone Distract from Your Presentation
    12. 32. Are You Letting These Speaking Quirks Derail Your Presentation?
    13. 33. Did You Hear the One About . . . ? Guidelines for Humor
    14. 34. “He’s Still Talking!” The Secrets to Managing Time When Presenting
    15. 35. Tips to Encourage Questions from Your Audience
    16. 36. Answer Questions Like a Pro
    17. 37. Show-and-Tell: Suggestions for Using Slides Successfully
    18. 38. I’m Speaking on a Panel: What Do I Do?
    19. 39. Polish Your Presentations a Little More
    20. 40. Continue to Improve: Use the Post-Presentation Checklist to Evaluate
  10. PART III | TALK ISN’T CHEAP: ASSERTIVE COMMUNICATION AND CONFLICT
    1. 41. Are You Too Nice? Learn the “Three Faces of Communication”
    2. 42. How Assertive Are You? Take a Self-Assessment
    3. 43. Should I Believe You? Avoid Sending Mixed Messages
    4. 44. Eliminate the Negativity—No Harsh, Aggressive Tones
    5. 45. Avoid the Use of the Word But, but . . .
    6. 46. Do You Have a Problem with “No Problem”?
    7. 47. Listen Up! You Can’t Talk and Pay Attention at the Same Time
    8. 48. Silence Isn’t Always Golden: Voice Your Opinion at Meetings
    9. 49. What’s My Line? What to Say in Awkward Situations
    10. 50. Two Communication Secrets to Get What You Want
    11. 51. How to Manage “Know-It-Alls” Without Insult
    12. 52. “Hold That Thought!” and Other Ways to Handle Interruptions
    13. 53. Fightin’ Words: Questions to Avoid Asking (or Answering) at Work
    14. 54. “How Can I Say This?” Ways to Deliver Difficult News
    15. 55. No Pouting: Polite Ways to Handle Criticism
    16. 56. Offended by a Comment? Try These Simple but Powerful Responses
    17. 57. Stop Complaining: Learn to Confront Others Politely
    18. 58. Someone Else’s Bad Behavior Is No Excuse for Your Own!
    19. 59. Work with a Bully? Tips for Asserting Yourself
    20. 60. Drama Screens: Handling Conflict Online
    21. 61. Staying Festive: Ways to Avoid Conflict at the Holidays
  11. PART IV | IT’S YOUR RESPONSIBILITY: CAREER ADVANCEMENT AND JOB SEARCH
    1. 62. Your Career Is What You Make It—So Make It Something!
    2. 63. Build Your Career, One Day at a Time
    3. 64. Seven Tips for Young Women Just Starting Their Careers
    4. 65. Many People Are Giving Me Career Suggestions. What Do I Do?
    5. 66. Don’t Put Yourself Down—Speak Well of Yourself Instead
    6. 67. Build Your Network Both Online and Off
    7. 68. Are You Letting Networking Opportunities Pass You By?
    8. 69. How to “Keep in Touch” Professionally and Successfully
    9. 70. Don’t Whine About Your Job. Do Something!
    10. 71. How Do I Conduct a Job Search? Suggestions for Success
    11. 72. Perk Up Your Résumé and Cover Letter
    12. 73. Avoid Blunders: Interviewing Tips for Everyone
    13. 74. How Do You Master Interviewing? Practice, Practice, Practice
    14. 75. Dress to Impress—Not to Fool the Employer
    15. 76. Avoid Job-Search Gaffes on Social Media
    16. 77. Lights, Camera, Interview! Tips for Interviewing on Skype
    17. 78. You Got the Interview—Now Here’s What to Do the Night Before
    18. 79. Nice Offer . . . But I Wasn’t Looking for a New Job
    19. 80. When to Let Your Employer Know You Are Leaving
  12. PART V | THE FINISHING TOUCHES: YOUR ACTIONS AND APPEARANCE MAKE A DIFFERENCE
    1. 81. Do You Want to Be Noticed? The Power of Presence
    2. 82. Do You Project Confidence When Seated?
    3. 83. Greetings: The Power of a Simple “Hello”
    4. 84. Introductions: Frustrations Galore!
    5. 85. Not for Men Only! The Etiquette of the Handshake
    6. 86. Cubicle Conversations: Keep Chat Professional in the Office
    7. 87. Effective International Communication: You Say “Potato,” and I Say . . .
    8. 88. Ways to Engage with People—for People Who Don’t Like to Engage!
    9. 89. The “Halo Effect”—When Being Nice Has Benefits
    10. 90. “But It’s Playing My Song”: Smart Phone Use for Business
    11. 91. The Etiquette of Connecting Professionally on LinkedIn
    12. 92. We Can’t All Be Steve Jobs: Dressing Well Reaps Results
    13. 93. Top 10 Business Clothing Mistakes
    14. 94. Don’t Take Your Neighbor’s Bread, and Other Dining Suggestions
    15. 95. Be a Gracious Guest: 10 Ways to Avoid Dining Blunders
    16. 96. Tips for Ordering Wine at a Business Dinner
    17. 97. In a Restaurant, to Introduce or Not? Tips for a Tricky Etiquette Situation
    18. 98. Your Mother Was Right: The Importance of Expressing Thanks
    19. 99. Etiquette for Hallways, Sidewalks, and Other Walkways
  13. Conclusion
  14. Index