Yesterday while doing my daily read on new apps, I stumbled across an article by Lydia Dishman at Fast Company. She introduced me to a new plugin for Chrome that highlights weak writing. As I read the article, I quickly clicked on the link and installed the plugin. I then encouraged the staff in our office to do the same. The following explains why I’m such a fan and why I was quick to hop on board “Just Not Sorry”.
I had to write an email yesterday. I was asking someone for a favor. I had 2 options; I could either go on and on about why I needed the favor or I could opt to cut to the chase and ask, point blank. Have you ever been stuck in a conversation where you knew the person wanted something? There’s a vast difference between being vague and being bold. My goal is always to aim for the middle; confident and efficient.
The ability to communicate effectively and confidently has a dramatic effect on our careers. Yet many of us fall into the trap of using weak language that sabotages our efforts to present ourselves with authority and confidence.
I would just like to say that I may not know as much as some of the communication experts out there, but I feel that we undermine our credibility time and time again by using minimizing language.
This one sentence says it all! By using the words “just”, “I feel”, and stating that I may not have as much expertise as perhaps other do, I have reduced my credibility to almost zero! How many times have you heard people communicate this way? How many times have you yourself used this type of minimizing language?
I’m convinced that even if we take one small step and eliminate the word “just” from our communication, we would see a huge difference in the way we are perceived in the workplace. I am amazed how much I use this word unnecessarily and unconsciously. “I’m just checking in to see…”. “I just want you to know”. “I just called because..” . My new awareness of the impact of this one word has now forced me to carefully choose my words in order to reflect more confidence.
Courage is the foundation of successful communication – and successful communication is the foundation of great achievement. Is it difficult to strive for respect above being liked, or to avoid weak language so that people hear your message more clearly? Yes. Does fearless communication mean that you have to be aggressive at work? Absolutely not! Ideally, the kind of strength you will develop in your communication will allow you to be direct and assertive and will create an environment for others to feel this freedom as well. Be yourself, be authentic and communicate fearlessly.