Communication Skills Training Courses : Power Phrases for Work

By Dan O'Connor

September 2, 2013

When it comes to Communication Skills Training Courses, the actual words you learn

Super Communication Trainer power phrases danger phrases Dan O'Connor

Super Communication Trainer power phrases danger phrases Dan O’Connor

matter, because there is power in words–or not; choose your words for maximum impact, in order to achieve effective communication and be seen as a confident communicator.  Observe those around you whom you see as strong people who consistently are heard by others–strong people who get their message across.  Their goal is that people hear them and their message, and in some cases–take action. You’ll find that for the most part, their speech is unhesitant, authoritative, and direct.  That is why they are seen as confident communicators who have mastered the art of effective communication.  With that in mind, consider the following:


“I’d suggest. . . .”

Replace this with the effective communication POWER PHRASE:

“I suggest. . . .”

If you ever find yourself about to say something along the lines of, “I’d suggest.” STOP! This is a common lead-in line for something you’re suggesting, but what it does is diminish and negate the suggestion you are about to put forth. Instead, what the savvy communicator uses is the Power Phrase, “I suggest.”

It sounds simple, but notice the difference in the message the two phrases send. One says, “Well, if I were confident in my suggestion, here’s what it would be…” and the other says, “I am confident in my suggestion and here’s what it is…”



There is one exception to this in –and that is the occasion where you actually want to lighten and dilute your message because you know the listener will not be readily accepting of what you say.  For example, you see that your teenager is wearing something inappropriate.  You might say “I suggest you change your clothes immediately.” Following this comment, be prepared to follow up with a consequence because telling your teenager to go change clothes is a strong and powerful command.  Some teenagers resist direct commands–even from parents.  In this instance you might want to deliberately soften your message with “I’d suggest changing your clothes” and then follow up with your reasoning (which hopefully will resonate with your child!)  Most children–especially teenagers– react more positively to a watered-down suggestion than to a direct command.

Remember, you want people to hear you and your message, and if appropriate, act upon that message.  Your goal is not to be the most authoritative person in the room.  So, if you WANT to dilute your message because you think that will be more effective, then certainly, go with “I’d suggest.”

This is your communication skills training courses training tip for the day, brought to you by communication expert and motivational keynote speaker Dan O’Connor.

It takes training and time on communication skills training courses to develop polished, savvy, effective communication skills. Make sure to subscribe to our training  and follow us on Facebook ( and Twitter (!/evslayer), subscribe to our RSS feed, and visit our website at

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Communication Skills Course: Strategy for Clear Speaking

By Dan O'Connor

August 25, 2013

When you listen--be all ears

When you listen–be all ears

Why enroll in a communication skills course?  Because training and development skills don’t come naturally to us, although they can be nurtured in the home, providing our parents have them.  But many people aren’t so lucky.  They need to study and practice to develop communication skills and a communication strategy for clear and effective speaking. This short communication skills course lesson is about clarifying the other person’s message before you respond to it.

It’s always important to make certain you heard the other person correctly before you respond to what was said.  Using danger phrases such as “you said,” is NOT the way to do this.  That danger phrase (“you said”) will sabotage your success WITHOUT clarifying the other person’s message. Keep in mind that human beings think they’re saying something other than what they’re really saying over 50% of the time. Therefore, saying to someone, “You said…” will cause the other person to be defensive.  It will increase his/her self-talk and will definitely increase the odds of confrontation and aggression.

But most importantly, beginning with “you said” will distract from the ultimate communication goal–which is understanding.  Clearly “you said” should not be part of a communication strategy for clear speaking. Using learned training and development skills, the next time you need to clarify a message, instead of saying, “You said…” try, “I understood” or “I heard” instead. Watch how it changes the message: “You said that you were going to get it done by the end of the week,” and “I understood that it was going to be done by the end of the week.” or “Let me get this straight…you just said you never told me you’d get it done by the end of the week?” and “Let me clarify what I heard before I respond. You never told me you’d get it done by the end of the week. Is that correct?”

Can you hear the difference in both tone and intent?  You don’t want to use words that bait, trap, or trip up the other person.  You want to use words that clarify and inform. Remember…it’s more important to gain understanding and clarity than to prove that you have a good memory; you can either choose to be right or to be effective.

If you are serious about enrolling in a communication skills course and truly bringing your communication to a new level, click the following ink and  join our group of learners NOW.


Communication Skills Course: Communicate by listening first

How NOT to communicate

Looking for more Danger Phrases and Power Phrases? Check out our latest release, “Say This–Not That” by Dan O’Connor, available on



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Online Self-Help Communication Course–How to Stop people from Stopping You (from speaking)!

By Dan O'Connor

June 19, 2013

  • self-help communication course, Online Speaker Course, communication courses, online communication, online commmunication training


    Will a self-help communication course work for you?  Check out this small snippet on stopping people from interrupting you–and decide for yourself.

  • What is the most common thing people say when they’ve been interrupted, and they want to gain control of the conversation again?  If you’re thinking “Excuse me,” or “I’m sorry,” you’re exactly right. Most people start their response with these two phrases, and most people are not effective at maintaining the communication floor.  Of course, most people have not taken our online speaking course, either, so they struggle with responses because they can’t anticipate reactions–and haven’t practiced their own responses.  If you want to be a more assertive (or even aggressive) communicator, one of the effective communication skills you’ll need to develop is your ability to maintain the floor when someone tries to pull it out from under you.  Today’s self-help communication course tip, brought to you in our online speaking course, is The Anti-Interrupter.If you are in a meeting (either at work or with your family at home) and someone (let’s say your competition–or maybe your spouse or child) successfully interrupts you, you lose your position and credibility along with losing the floor. Don’t let this happen to you ever again. Learn how to be an effective anti-interrupter.If you’ve ever watched Judge Judy–you’ll know that she’s a perfect example of someone who is not easily interrupted.  In fact, I don’t know if it’s possible to interrupt this woman and take the floor–or attention–from her.  JJ’s communication style might be different from yours, (I certainly hope it is) but let’s take her Anti-Interrupter tactic and break it down, because this is one arrow in her communication quiver that should be in yours also.  (Her quiver is full of poison arrows, however, that you wouldn’t want in yours.)Step 1) Keep your head straight–don’t tilt it to the side.Step 2) Make “wide eyes,” opening your lids to show the entire iris.Step 3) Use a stop gesture with your hand.  You know the international gesture for “stop.”Step 4) Use an anti-interrupter phrase (There are two to choose from– “I’m speaking,” and “I’m still speaking.”)If you ever watch Judge Judy, you’ll see she never strays from this formula, and it’s effective even against the most abrasive people. Use it, practice it, and while you might not call people names in a meeting, you’ll be able to maintain the floor against the best–and most aggressive–of them.
  • In Dan’s online self-help communication course, he strongly recommends you practice this and other scripts and tactics so that you will have them at the ready when you need them.  So remember, keep your head straight and your eyes wide open–put your hand up to gesture STOP, and say simply:  “I’m still speaking.”  Believe me, the spotlight will be on you again, and you’ll be allowed to continue speaking.  Magic.
  • To check out Dan’s online communication course, go to the subscription choice page.  And to see his YouTube videos, click here.    To buy his books, Say This Not That and Energy Vampire Slaying:  101–available in paperbook and Kindle–click here.




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Communication Training–Danger Phrase “A Better Idea”

By Dan O'Connor

June 11, 2013

Today’s effective professional communication training tip from communication keynote speaker Dan O’Connor:

communication training, online communication training

Proposal! Solution!! Answer!!


How many times have you heard colleagues say “I have a better idea; I think we should. . . “?  If you find yourself about to say something such as, “I have a better idea,” or, “I think that’s a better idea” stop right there.  Instead, use your communication training.  Write those phrases on your danger phrase list.  And the next time, replace the word, “better” with an adjective or an adjective phrase that illustrates why you think the proposal / solution / answer is–in your opinion–better than what has been previously discussed.  Put the words “proposal” “solution” and “answer” on your power phrase list opposite the danger phrase “better idea” so you will begin using the new, powerful, effective vocabulary instead of standard, ineffective and weak vocabulary.  (Remember the goal is to become a powerful, effective, confident communicator who is heard and gets results.)

For example, notice the difference:

Instead of saying, “I think I have a better idea,” try offering, “I believe I have a safer proposal” or, “I believe I have a more company-focused solution,” or, “I believe I have a more cost-effective answer.”  Can you feel the difference?  Everyone around you will begin to notice that you are speaking in a stronger language–a language that prompts the listener to hear and consider what is being said, instead of dismissing it.  People want answers, solutions, and proposals–not simply “ideas.”  And again–qualify that solution with an adjective or phrase that tells why it is superior to anything already presented or discussed.

When you articulate why one solution is superior to another, people will be more open to hearing what you are saying and believing in your proposals and solutions. Sometimes just a couple of words make all the difference. If you want to be an effective communicator, you have to talk like one and that means using your communication training.

If you are interested in communication training online, go to our SUBCRIPTION CHOICE page.  And to look over our free YouTube communication training videos, click here.

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Powerful Online Communication Training–The Language of Diversity

By Dan O'Connor

June 3, 2013


Powerful Online Communication Training


If you’ve never participated in diversity training–or any powerful online communication training for that matter–if you’re not sure what diversity is–if you don’t know the value of diversity to you or to your organization– this communication course on the language of diversity is for you.  For example:


  • Can you identify and speak inclusive language–i.e. the language of diversity?
  • Could you define and discuss the different dimensions of diversity and how these dimensions affect your life and your work environment?
  • Do you know what a diversity compass is, and how to use it to navigate diversity issues and avoid lawsuits?  (Many people in the world of sports don’t know what it is; just read Yahoo for one day to see how many people are being held to account because they don’t understand how to use a diversity compass, and they continue to say offensive things about people because of their ethnicity, gender, or sexual orientation.)
  • Do you know what “gender-neutral” language is, how to use it at work, and why it’s appropriate?
  • Do you know the Platinum Rule and how to implement it at work?
  • Do you know what words and phrases run the risk of being labeled “hostile” and what words you could use to replace them?
  • Can you identify and work with diverse personality types?
  • Do you have communication scripts in your arsenal that you can use to de-fuse confrontation and mediate complaints?
  • Do you know what sexual harassment is, and how to avoid sexual harassment complaints and lawsuits?

This powerful online communication training section on diversity focuses on what to say, what to do, and what NOT to say and do–in the workplace.  This diversity training is not focused on changing how you feel or how you think, but rather it is focused on behavior–and avoiding inappropriate behavior that will result in a lawsuit for you and for your company.

Without being able to speak the language of diversity, you are communicationally deficient and could possibly subject yourself or your company to unwanted intrusion by state or federal authorities.  You may think anything you want in the workplace, but you may not say anything you want, or act any way you want.  This section of Dan’s training will help you navigate the waters and speak the language of diversity.

For a free powerful online communication training lesson, go now to our subscription page.  To subscribe to Dan’s free YouTube videos, click here.


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Handling Difficult People –“The Surrender” Tactic

By Dan O'Connor

May 20, 2013

Handling difficult people, handling difficult people training, online communication training


How are you at handling difficult people? Would you like to encourage the people in your work environment to be more fair and flexible?  Perhaps you too should be more fair and flexible? Wouldn’t that be a good thing for everybody? In the handling difficult people section of his online communication skills training course, Dan presents you with the following truth: It is only what you  are not giving that can possibly be missing from this relationship.

That said, if you want people to be more flexible with you, start by being more flexible with them. In other words; surrender more.

Most smart, savvy communicators are accustomed to getting their way and “winning.” A dangerous side-effect of savvy communication can sometimes be that they become a little too aggressive and determined to “win.”

If you’re on a mission to get the people you work with to be more flexible and bend to your way of thinking and approaching things, try this effective professional communication skills tactic that expert communication trainer and motivational keynote speaker Dan O’Connor offers as one of many handling difficult people solutions.


It goes like this: When you find yourself in a discussion or even an argument with colleagues (especially difficult people), instead of stridently attempting to prove your point, and trying to convince people to go along with your idea–if the issue or point of disagreement is something that you actually can concede to– simply use this three step process for this handling difficult people issue:

1) Clearly voice your objection (Power Phrase: “It’s difficult for me to see how that will work,”)

2) Show Trust (Power Phrase: “I trust your judgment,”)

3) Convey support (Power Phrase: “You have my support.”)

If you want to see how this works when we put it all together, subscribe to this training site, and when you get to lesson #3–you’ll learn all about it.  You’ll learn how to surrender–and give in once in awhile, in preparation for the day when you absolutely cannot concede the point.

Sounds simple, doesn’t it? It actually is quite simple, but it’s not easy because our ego tends to get in the way and we too often choose to be right rather than effective.

Remember that the more people see you as fair and flexible, the more people will choose to be fair and flexible with you. Give it=Get it.

This and many other techniques for handling difficult people can be found in Dan’s online communication training course. These tactics, techniques and solutions are not just for the workplace; you’ll find them handy and effective for communicating with your partner,  friends, children and parents–especially this tactic.

For full online communication training, check out our subscription page; you’ll be glad you did! And to see Dan’s YouTube videos on handling difficult people–click here.


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Self-Help Communication Course–Confronting Office Backstabbers and Gossips

By Dan O'Connor

May 15, 2013

Self-Help Communication Course--Online Communication training

Self-help Communication course–confronting office backstabbers and gossips

In Dan’s online self-help communication course, he helps you deal with the difficult people in your life–in this case office backstabbers and gossips.

Most of us have had the troubling experience of hearing that someone has been gossiping about us, backstabbing us, or revealing private or inappropriate information about us. When this happens, it can be difficult to communicate assertively and clearly without crossing the line into aggressive behavior. In his Online Communication Training,  Dan O’Connor offers a principle that will help us respond as the savvy communicators we are all striving to be.  He reminds us: We train people how to treat us. In this instance it’s up to us to train people to understand that gossiping about us will not be tolerated.

If you decide that you must talk with someone about the fact that he or she is reportedly  gossiping about you (or about someone else) you can always use the “I know this can’t be true” strategy from our online communication trainingIt goes something like this:

“Hi Marty. Marci told me that you said that I was having an inappropriate relationship with MaryAnne–who just happens to be my boss. I know you would never say things like that about me, so I wanted to bring it to your attention right away. I’m correct in assuming you would never say anything like that about me, right?”

This is a great way to give people an out. Generally speaking, they will respond with something such as, “Of course not! I would never say those things.  Are you kidding?” to which you can respond, “I know; that’s why I wanted to bring this directly to you. Can I count on you to let me know if anyone continues to say things that may tarnish my professional image?” And most people will immediately respond with: “Oh yes, of course.  Right away.”

And now everyone is on alert.  Of course there is much more to handling backstabbers and gossips than this one script.  If you want to forever banish the backstabbers and gossips from your life–Dan will show you how in his online self-help communication course.  Subscribe today and learn how to make people accountable when they gossip about you, or when they gossip to you about other people.  Best of all, you can accomplish this in a way that is neither aggressive nor offensive, and in a manner that will discourage further gossip.  The word will spread fast that you will take gossips and backstabbers to task.  You will have accomplished your goal of training people how to treat you–and that is no small thing.   Can a self-help communication course help YOU achieve your communication objectives?

Go to the subscription options page to get started, and then subscribe for more training; you’ll be glad you did!  And after you do that, you can enjoy Dan’s free YouTube videos by clicking here.

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Online Communication Skills Training Course–Calling Out Without Confronting

By Dan O'Connor

May 14, 2013

Online Communication Skills Training Course

Online Communication Skills Training Course: Handling Confrontation

In this online communication skills training course lesson, Dan deals with the difference between calling out and confronting.

It’s inevitable; we all have to call someone out sooner or later about their behavior–about something they said or did. If we don’t handle this properly, our actions will result in confrontation and make matters worse.

If you need to “call someone out” on behavior, or let them know that you know–and you want them to know that you know, try this simple, effective professional communication strategy: BE THE “INVESTIGATOR.”

According to the book The Laws of Power, it’s the person who asks the most questions in any relationship that has the perceived power in that relationship. Using this strategy will not only help you find the words to confront someone in a professional way, but also establish you as having more power in the relationship, all while giving the other person an easy out; a true win-win.

If you choose to be “the investigator” when you need to confront someone on backstabbing, gossip, unprofessional behavior, sloppy work, a lie, or whatever else, just ask questions, for example.
“Steve, I’m confused. What am I missing? I can’t seem to find what I need in your report.” or “Hilde, I’m troubled. Can you tell me why Mary would say you’re saying. . . about me?” or “Jim, I’m concerned. What am I doing incorrectly that this keeps happening again and again?”

As we go over in our online communication skills training course, —if you truly are misunderstanding something, it’s a great opportunity to get the correct information without running the risk of being “wrong.” You can never be in the wrong when you’re simply looking for answers.

The next time you or someone in your office has to confront someone, remember–if you choose to be the investigator, it’s a simple, easy way to walk the fine line of assertive communication without crossing into aggressive territory. This is great for combatting negativity at work, backstabbing, gossiping, and other unprofessional behavior. Check out our communication YouTube videos to learn more powerful communication techniques and be sure to click subscription options on this site–to learn about our 50-lesson online communication skills training course.

Then subscribe and get one week free!

Our online communication training courses can’t be beat! If you’re looking for communication training courses online, online communication skills training, communication skills training courses, communication skills training, a good online communication skills training course, a communication skills trainer, or a communication skills keynote speaker, you can find it all here, including dealing with difficult people at work online training.

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Communication Skills Training: Protecting from Passive-Aggressive Behavior

By Dan O'Connor

May 13, 2013

Online communication skills training course

Online communication skills training course: Handling passive-aggressive people and comments

In his online communication skills training course, Dan O’Connor gives you solutions for dealing with passive-aggressive behavior.  Following is a sample of one of his many tactics.

(You can also find the video, audio, and course materials for this online communication skills training course in lesson 1 after you subscribe.)

When dealing with passive-aggressive behavior, one of the keys is to call people on their behavior and make them accountable. A simple way to do that is to use what is called a spotlight question.  A spotlight question is one designed to put the focus on the person and the behavior–shining a bright light–with the intent of holding the individual accountable for what he/she is saying or how he/she is behaving.  It is one of the many tactics–usable immediately–that Dan gives in his online communication training skills course to help individuals deal with difficult people.  And make no mistake about it–people who engage in passive-aggressive behavior are among the most difficult of people.  Unfortunately you will find them everywhere–in the home, in the workplace, and frequently in social situations.

(Want more online communication skills training courses? Check out our packages!)

A spotlight question always begins with the lead-in line, “Are you trying to…?” For example:

“Are you trying to insult me?”

“Are you trying to disrupt this meeting?”

“Are you trying to say you don’t like my ideas?”

This forces the passive-aggressive people to address their motivation, and be open and honest in what they are saying.  Passive-aggressives don’t like this; they prefer to hide behind humor or confusion.  They want to hit and run, so to speak, but they don’t want to be honest.  Spotlight questions force honesty.  Making  passive-aggressive communicators accountable for their behavior takes away their reward (which is the satisfaction of getting your goat), and decreases the likelihood of their continuing that behavior with you.

Remember, you can’t change the way people behave, but you can train them how to treat YOU.

For more ideas on how to handle difficult people, read Dan’s book Energy Vampire Slaying: 101, available from Amazon Books.  Just click here!  To sign up for Dan’s online communication skills training course–just press here to see subscription options.

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Online Communication Skills Training Video: 3 Magic Phrases

By Dan O'Connor

May 10, 2013


Online communication skills training video from Dan O’Connor’s YouTube free samples — Dan gives you three magic phrases that you can use to keep the conversation on track, assuring that your message is delivered.

These phrases are from Dan’s navigation arsenal–three of Dan’s navigational phrases–tools you can use to bring the conversation back to the point you are making, when someone is subverting your message, or perhaps simply not hearing it.  Whether you’re talking to a co-worker, a friend, a partner–or one of your children–Dan tells you how to use these phrases and combine them with The Broken Record to get the conversation going in the direction you’ve chosen.  You control the conversation because you are prepared, leaving nothing to chance.

Do you struggle with being heard?  Do you lack confidence when making a point?  Do you find your communication skills are lacking, and you are frequently unprepared to answer questions put to you?  Would you like to develop the skills that savvy communicators have–and would you like the tools that savvy communicators use to get their points across smoothly and with clarity?  This is why Dan developed his online communication skills training course, which includes 1/2 hour online communication skills training videos–to give you the tools and skills you can use in everyday conversation to develop confidence and a winning communication style.  But this can’t be done in one presentation, and it can’t be done in ten minutes.  Savvy communicators are life-time learners.  They learn skills and they practice them.  Then they learn and practice new skills.  You can spot them a mile away– and if you want to be among them–you’ve come to the right place.

To gain the verbal skills and tools that will assure that you remain in control of the conversation, watch Dan’s online communication skills training video–3 Magic Phrases to Boost Your Communication Confidence.

Click on the subscription button now, to see what Dan’s training can do for you; you’ll be glad you did!

Online Communication Skills Training VideoThese online communication skills training videos are only free samples of Dan’s training, and available on his free YouTube channel as well. Click here to subscribe to his YouTube channel.


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Online Communication Training Courses You’ll Enjoy Taking

By Dan O'Connor

May 9, 2013

Online Communication Training CoursesOnline communication training courses you’ll enjoy taking delivered by communication expert Dan O’Connor. Enjoy new lessons every week, CEU credits, videos, audios, and more. Check out our lessons for free here! Lean how to deal with difficult people, deliver superior customer service, communicate with power, tact, and finesse, eliminate negativity in the workplace, and more, all without having to go to an offsite workshop.

When you’re ready to subscribe, check out our subscription options here. Does your entire office need online communication training courses? Check out our business plans on our packages page.

Every lesson includes things such as danger phrases, power phrases, dealing with difficult people techniques, body language tips, strategies for visual communication, verbal patterns, scripting, and more. Dan also gives you the resources for you to make material learned in the online communication training courses all your own, through audio reviews, flash-cards, review cheat-sheets, and more.

DANGER PHRASE: I can’t help . . . / I couldn’t help . . .
POWER PHRASE: I was unable to control . . . I am unable to control . . .

Saying that “we can’t help” something sends a message to others and to ourselves that we are out of control in that area. This should be a signal for us to regain control. We CAN help what we say, what we do, and even what we think or feel sometimes. The next time you are about to say something such as, “I just can’t help it–I say what I think.” Try something more accurate, such as, “I am sometimes unable to control what I say.” And you might want to follow it up with, “But I’m working on that.” And do it!

If you haven’t experienced online communication training courses delivered by Dan O’Connor, you haven’t experienced communication training. Do you have a question about our training? Contact us and we’ll be happy to help.

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Communication Skills Training Courses Online–Magic Power Phrases to Use at Work

By Dan O'Connor

February 25, 2013

Online Communication Skills Training with Dan O'Connor, difficult people, motivational keynote speaker on communication, communication author

Communication Training Magic Phrases

Communication skills are learned and developed; otherwise they’d be called communication talents.  Below you’ll find powerful phrases for honing your communication skills and speaking with tact.  You need power phrases handy, whether dealing with difficult people or just engaging in everyday conversation.  Memorizing and rehearsing power phrases will have you ready when the next communication challenge comes your way.  I’m about to introduce you to four of the phrases all savvy communicators have in their communication arsenal.

WHENEVER you are at a loss for words–feel speechless or disempowered–confidently reach into your bag of tricks and pull out one of these phrases.

That’s interesting; tell me more.

That’s interesting; why would you ask that?

That’s interesting; why would you say that?

That’s interesting; why would you do that?

Let’s assume you are dealing with a difficult person who wants you to react.  When you use one of these phrases, you are responding–taking control of the conversation on your terms–rather than reacting with whatever emotion and words the difficult person is trying to elicit from you.

Remember that getting out of the reaction mode and into the response mode is the first step towards developing your communication skills.

Try using one of these phrases the next time you are at a loss for words, and you’ll see how easy it is to enter the response mode–when you are prepare.

Don’t forget that frequently the same communication tactics that you learn for work can be applied at home as well.  However, these magic phrases are for shutting down difficult people–so make certain you don’t use them sarcastically with your children or spouse because that will surely backfire.  Having said that–you know that relative that seeks you out at every gathering and makes an art out of being passive-aggressive and grilling you just to irritate you–YES, use these phrases; they’ll shine a spotlight on his/her behavior–which is what you want to do.

For more communication lessons, tips and techniques, return to our home page and sign up.  Isn’t it time you invested in yourself–for half the price of your daily Starbucks coffee?  Just click this link to join.   Train online and/or download lessons to your computer!

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Online Communication Training—People Not Taking You Seriously? Change the Subject

All Posts about Online Communication Skills Training Subject Selection! and more. If you’re looking for Dan’s complete training course, click here.

Online Communication Training with Motivational Keynote speaker on communication Dan O'Connor

Online communication training; placing the subject of a sentence where it belongs

Another tip from Dan’s online communication training 50-lesson course–choose the subject of your sentence wisely for maximum effect.

Are people not getting the point when you send a message? Change the Subject–Literally–Because Words are Power We sometimes sabotage our own message as soon as we open our mouths, by choosing the wrong subject.  The average manager giving instructions will begin with “You need” or “I need,” and that ruins what follows.  Remember, if you’re giving instructions, the first part of the sentence is critical, and the first part generally includes the subject.  Choose that subject wisely and avoid the “I need” or “you need” unless your needs or the needs of the other person are what you really want to address–and that is unlikely. 

Figure out the most important thing you want to convey, and place that at the beginning of your sentence.  Let me cite a few examples.  “I need that article by the end of the day.”  How strong is that?  Not.  Now compare that sentence with: “That article is due by the end of the day.”  Clear, strong and to the point.  This is savvy communicating.  “You need to pay attention during training.”  This prompts the reaction–Really?  I do?   Now compare that with: “This training deserves your full attention.”  That’s how a CEO would communicate.  The emphasis is on the value of the training–that you’ll be missing if you don’t pay attention. Choose your subject wisely, because as you can see from these examples, it impacts the punch and value of your message. Be especially careful of the danger phrases “I need,” “You need,” “I’d suggest,” and “I’d appreciate.” 

If you’d like more information as to why these are weak beginnings, try our online communication training course.  Just click this link for subscription options! 

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