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Talk Like a Leader

195 EpisodesProduced by Guy HarrisWebsite

Tips, techniques, and insights for more effective leadership communication. Learn to apply powerful communication strategies to coach, inspire, and resolve conflict situations as a leader.

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Commas and Periods

December 13th, 2022


The Talk Like a Leader podcast in a weekly new episode format is coming to an end with this episode, and I'm sharing a thought for you regarding how being clear on commas and periods can help you be a better …

The Best Way to Resolve Conflicts that Develop by Email

December 6th, 2022


Have you ever been stuck in an email conflict? I have, too. In this episode, I'll share the best way to resolve them quickly.

Additional …

How You Listen Matters as Much as How You Talk

November 29th, 2022


The filter you apply when you listen to another person matters as much as the way you adjust your delivery for them to hear you better.

The filter you apply when you listen to another person matters as much as the …

It’s Good to THINK Before You Speak

November 15th, 2022


You don't have to say something just because the thought popped into your head. Using the THINK acronymn, you can make better decisions about what to say and when to say it.

Additional Leadership Resources

Take …

[Re-Release] Leading Remotely: The Importance of Intentionality

November 8th, 2022


This episode is from 2020, but there are still a lot of important lessons about remote work that are still relevant now. Hope you enjoy!

"As working from home stretches to months rather than weeks, leaders find …

How to Get People to Listen to You

November 1st, 2022


People frequently ask me this question: "How do I get people to listen to me?" It turns out that there is both a short answer and a long answer. In this episode, I'll share both of them with you.

Additional …

Capture and Confirm Attention

October 25th, 2022


First grade teachers understand it and have a strategy to achieve it. Youth organization leaders understand it and have a strategy to achieve it. …

Final Thoughts from The Rules of Civil Conversation

October 18th, 2022


This episode concludes my comments on the ideas found at It looks at and summarizes the last four rules of civil …

Getting Past Your Filters: The Halo Effect

October 11th, 2022


Continuing the discussion of ideas drawn from, this episode looks at another cognitive bias (or filter) that can …

Getting Past Your Filters: The Curse of Knowledge

October 4th, 2022


Once you know something and it is obvious to you, it can be difficult to understand how it is not obvious to someone else. This "curse of knowledge" …

Getting Past Your Filters: Fundamental Attribution Error

September 20th, 2022


Biases - we all have them. Learning to recognize our biases and get past them is one of the key skills of leadership communication. This week, I'm looking at the bias know as Fundamental Attribution Error and …

Avoiding Logical Fallacies: Ad hominem and Genetic

September 13th, 2022


This episode, like the episode last week, is what I like to call a "lighthouse" episode. It's more about what to watch out for than what to do. I'm …

Avoiding Logical Fallacies: Black-or-White and Middle Ground

August 30th, 2022


This episode examines how two common logical fallacies - Black-or-white thinking and Middle Ground solutions - can get in the way of effective …

Reaching Shared Understanding

August 23rd, 2022


This episode continues the discussion about The Rules of Civil Conversation and how they apply to Talking Like a Leader. Let's take a look at the …

How to Disagree Without Being Disagreeable

August 16th, 2022


Have you ever had a conversation with someone and you thought: "What is wrong with them?" I have, and it usually does not help me to communicate better if I linger on the thought. In this episode, I'll offer some …

Feedback Sandwiches Usually Taste Bad

August 16th, 2022


The title basically says what I think of the feedback sandwich. In this episode, I'll share the problems with the feedback sandwich and what to do instead.

Additional Leadership Resources

Take our free DISC …

Stop Using Constructive Criticism and Do This Instead

August 2nd, 2022


Constructive criticism rarely delivers the results you want. It tends to be received badly and to have little to no positive impact on performance. …

Separate Impact from Intent

July 26th, 2022


Humans love to look for patterns and reasons for things and then to build stories that explain what they observe. That tendency can create communication problems when we let the stories we tell ourselves about other …

Is Conflict Always a Bad Thing?

July 19th, 2022


Conflict sounds bad. Few people look forward to "conflict" discussions. More people avoid or look to escape conflict discussions than actively participate in them. Conflict certainly has a negative emotional aspect for …

Six Questions for Collaborative Communication

July 12th, 2022


Collaboration is a big part of team work and joint problem solving. Leading a team meeting, coaching a team member on their performance, setting …

Kind is not Weak

July 5th, 2022


People often confuse kindness for weakness, and that can create problems. You do not have to be unkind in order to be strong. In this episode, I'll comment on the difference between these two ideas and how it affects …

Vulnerability Makes Connections

June 28th, 2022


Recently, I had an experience with about 120 young people aged 15-20 that taught me a lesson about the power of vulnerability to connect with people. …

[REPOST] How to Be Assertive Without Being a Jerk

June 21st, 2022


Using assertive communication can help your to communicate more clearly and completely, and it has a risk. It’s possible to try to communicate assertively and slip over the line in to aggressive, jerk-like …

Overcoming the Pull of the Past – Dealing with Leadership Undertow

June 14th, 2022


When you step in to leadership, you inherit all of the good and bad of past leadership decisions for people who sat in your current seat in the past. Dealing with the negative expectations that can create can be a …

Oh No, I Made a Mistake I Knew How to Avoid!

June 7th, 2022


This week I was working in my shop, and I made a mistake that I new how to avoid. How is that possible? Both the answer to that question is in this episode and how the lesson connects to leadership communication is in …

Resolving Conflicts with Other Leaders in Your Organization

May 24th, 2022


In a recent workshop, I got a question related to how conflict resolution with other leaders might be different from conflict resolution within the …

How to Discipline and Employee After You Tried Everything Else

May 17th, 2022


You have tried everything you can think of. You have encouraged, corrected, and taught, and, still, they keep doing that annoying thing. What do you …

Longing for the Past vs Looking to the future

May 10th, 2022


As much of the business world transitions from work from home to some version of hybrid or full work from the office scenario, leaders face the …

The Impact of Relationship, Message, and Context

May 3rd, 2022


Three factors affect every element in your communication effort – relationship, message, and context. In this episode, I’ll touch on what each of these elements means and how they affect your communication efforts.

Three Steps for Handling a Persistently Negative Team Member

April 26th, 2022


A common question I get is: "How do you deal with a persistently or aggressively negative team member." In this weeks episode, I'll share three …

Assume (at least) Benign Intent

April 15th, 2022


Today I got this question in a class: “How do you listen for content rather than delivery?” The answer: “assume (at least) benign intent.” Listen to …

How to Coach a Team Member Who is Doing Nothing Right

March 29th, 2022


A common question I get is: “How do I coach a team member who is doing nothing right?” In this episode, I’ll share some thoughts and some strategies …

Consider Alternate Stories

March 22nd, 2022


This weeks episode is about helping you to elevate conversations rather than escalate situations by the way you respond. Considering alternate …

Short, Frequent Conversations Beat Long, Infrequent Ones

March 15th, 2022


The number of conversations you have with people is more important than the length of the conversations. Being mindful of the number of times you …

The Power of Meta Conversations

March 8th, 2022


Meta conversations are basically conversations about conversations. As confusing as that sounds, they help you clear things up. In this episode, I’m talking about what meta conversations are, how they help, and how you …

Experience Can Numb You to the Struggles of Others

March 1st, 2022


This episode is the second lesson illustrated by an experience I had with my grandchildren, and it builds on my last episode – Expectations vs Reality

Expectations vs. Reality

February 22nd, 2022

This week, I’m sharing an experience I recently had with my grandchildren that illustrates a key leadership principle that connects expectations, the …

Faith vs. Fear in Communication

February 15th, 2022


This week, I have my friend and colleague Carl Smith as my guest. Join us as we discuss faith vs fear in our communication choices, mindsets, and …

Get on Their Side of the Table

February 8th, 2022


This week, I discussed a peer-to-peer situation with a workshop participant, and it reminded me of a general communication principle that applies to conversations with all people. The general principle for effective …

Use Affirmative Statements

February 1st, 2022


This week, I’ll share a simple and powerful concept that will significantly improve the clarity of your communication efforts. It applies to both …

Have the Difficult Conversation

January 25th, 2022


Most people avoid difficult conversations because, well, they are difficult. Very few people enjoy confronting difficult situations, and it is the …

6 Books for Your Reading List

January 18th, 2022


Leadership communication is as much mindset as it is skillset. This week, I’m recommending six books you can read to improve both.

Additional …

More Context on Selling Change You Don't Like

January 11th, 2022


Two episodes ago, I discussed four things you can do to Sell a Change You Don’t Like. In this episode, I’m expanding and elaborating on those ideas.

[Re-release] Three Communication Resolutions

January 4th, 2022


As we enter a new year, the idea of reflecting on the past year and thinking about changes for the new one are on many people's minds. Two weeks with grandchildren has given me a refreshed perspective on leadership …

How to Sell a Change You Don't Like

December 28th, 2021


Eventually, you will have to sell a change you did not initiate and you do not like. In this episode, I’m sharing four things you can do to more …

Why I Work Hard to NOT Get Angry

December 21st, 2021


This week, I’m sharing a life lesson that comes from reflecting on years of leadership decisions about problem solving, conflict resolution, and …

The Problem with Email and Instant Messaging

December 14th, 2021


Written communication can both speed things up and slow things down. Used well, email and instant messaging can make our communication better and faster. Used poorly, they can create problems that take hours or days to …

Identifying Your Blindspots So You Can Guard Against Them

December 7th, 2021


One way to improve your communication effectiveness is to be aware of and sensitive to the things you do that hurt it. We call those areas of interaction “blind spots”. In this episode, I’ll share two ways of …

Three Questions You Can Use for Coaching Conversations

November 30th, 2021


A common concern expressed in our Bud to Boss workshops is getting the other person to speak in coaching conversations, project planning meetings, …

We All Have Blindspots

November 23rd, 2021


It’s easy to see other people’s blind spots. It’s also easy to ignore our own. Focusing on other people’s blind spots while ignoring our own seriously limits our ability to communicate. In this weeks episode, I’ll share …

More Than Just Words: Tone, Body Language, Timing, and Environment

November 16th, 2021


It’s tempting to look for the right words and to think in terms of phraseology as the key to effective communication. Remember that communication is …

What CAN You Do?

November 9th, 2021


I often here front line leaders express frustration and exasperation with what they cannot do in their role. This focus on what they cannot do often …

Facilitate Connection

November 3rd, 2021


Leadership communication is certainly about how you communicate directly with your team, and it is more than that. It also includes what you do to facilitate communication within your team and between team members. This …

Beware the Sideways Comment

October 26th, 2021


Recently, a friend of mine told me about a situation where he made a “sideways” comment during a management meeting, and it bit him. In this week’s …

Confirm Understanding Before You Respond

October 19th, 2021


This week's episode is based on something I experienced while leading a workshop last week. I had an interchange with a class participant that …

The Danger of Assumptions

October 5th, 2021


Assumptions work dangerously on two directions: the assumptions we make about others and the assumptions they make about us. Both of these types of assumptions can interfere with effective communication. In this episode …

Maximizing Your Communication Power

September 28th, 2021


Once you know your source of communication power, maximizing your power to become a better communicator is the next step. In this episode, I’m continuing and expanding the idea I started in the Know Your Source of …

[Re-broadcast] Data Tells and Stories Sell

September 21st, 2021


Leaders rarely need to sell physical products or services to their teams, and that doesn’t mean they don’t sell. Instead of physical goods and services, Leaders sell ideas, concepts, commitment, motivation, and focus. …

Know Your Source of Communication Power

September 14th, 2021


There are three main sources of communication power you can lean on when you interact with others. In this episode, you’ll learn what they are and how they impact your ability to Talk Like a Leader.

Additional …

How You Can Blow Another Person's Mind

September 7th, 2021


Blowing someone’s mind generally refers to surprising them in some way – usually in a good way. There’s also a way that you can blow someone’s mind …

Remember to Close the Communication Loop

August 30th, 2021


Communication is two-way: message sent and message received. Sometimes the confirmation that a message was received is automatic. Sometimes it is not, and we have to make an effort to send that "loop closing" message. …

[Re-release] Three Ways to Irritate Others and How to Correct It

August 24th, 2021


This week, we're re-releasing one of our most popular episodes to date, Three Ways to Irritate Others and How to Correct It.

In your Leadership …

The DISC Style That Makes the Best Leader

August 17th, 2021


People frequently ask – which DISC style makes the best leader? In this episode, I’ll give you my answer to that question. It might not be what you …

Beware of Either-Or Interpretations

August 10th, 2021


Viewing complex problems – like behavior change and goal achievement – triggers a problem for many of us. The problem is known as “binary bias” or …

Five Communication Strategies to Stop Using and What to Do Instead

August 3rd, 2021


There are many communication strategies used in common, everyday communication that don’t translate well to leadership communication. In this episode, I’m looking at five commonly used communication strategies that I …

How to Ask Questions Without Backing People into a Corner

July 27th, 2021


While I recommend that leaders develop the skill of asking good questions, I also recognize that questions can be perceived as attacking or interrogating rather than inquiring. In this episode, I’ll share some thoughts …

The DISC Model is a Good Enough Model Not a Perfect One

July 20th, 2021


I frequently get questions about why and how I use the DISC model. One of the questions is: “Is the DISC Model the best model for working with people?” In many cases, my answer is some version of: “It depends.” In this …

How to Be Assertive Without Being a Jerk

July 13th, 2021


Using assertive communication can help your to communicate more clearly and completely, and it has a risk. It’s possible to try to communicate assertively and slip over the line in to aggressive, jerk-like …

Using Stories to Coach with Impact

July 6th, 2021


In a previous episode, I said “Data Tells and Stories Sell.” In this episode I’m picking up that thread to look at how and why stories can help you become a more effective coach for your team.

Additional Leadership …

Control What You Can

June 29th, 2021


Last week, I lead a training session for new and aspiring leaders, and some of our discussion reminded me of an issue that many leaders – especially …

Focus on Similarities More Than Differences

June 22nd, 2021


It’s both easy and tempting to focus on the differences we have with others in terms of focus and approach. It’s better to focus on the similarities …

All People Are Motivated

June 15th, 2021


I have spoken with many leaders who get frustrated with the “unmotivated” person on their team. In this episode, I’m challenging the idea that anyone is unmotivated, and offering some thoughts on how to both find a …

Use Person First Language

June 8th, 2021


In talking with a friend of mine recently (Dr. Ashley Perkins-Shogren), I learned a phrase to better describe a communication pattern that I’ve been trying to describe for years. She is a mental health advocate, and you …

Work the Problem

June 1st, 2021


This week's episode was inspired by something I heard Jason Hayes (Team leader on the TV show Seal Team) say. The concept focuses on separating business problems from relationship problems and how to focus our efforts …

The Future of Work with Kevin Eikenberry – Episode 2

May 25th, 2021


My conversation with Kevin Eikenberry about the future of work and what leaders need to do to both prepare for and navigate through the return to the office after shutdowns caused by the COVID 19 pandemic.

Additional …

The Future of Work with Kevin Eikenberry – Episode 1

May 18th, 2021


As we approach the “end” of the COVID 19 pandemic, leaders face a new set of challenges with decisions and communication related to return to the office. This week Kevin Eikenberry joins me to discuss the issues leaders …

If You Do Only This One Thing, Your Communication Will Improve

May 11th, 2021


There are many things you can do to improve your communication skills, and there is one thing that trumps every other strategy or tactic that I can think of. In this episode, I’ll share that one thing. The thing is …

How Suggesting Ways for People to Improve Can Backfire on You

May 4th, 2021


When you are in a leadership role, you will have conversations where you are discussing other people’s behaviors, words, approaches to work, and …

The Power of Communication or Personality Models

April 27th, 2021


Last week I discussed the problem with every communication or personality model, and this week I’m looking at the power of them. There are three things you can learn from every communication or personality model if you …

The Problem with Every Communication or Personality Model

April 20th, 2021


Every communication and/or personality model shares a common problem – even the DISC model that I use and teach has this problem. In this episode, I’ll share with you both the problem and the answer for how to use these …

It's Better to Disarm Than to Strongarm

April 13th, 2021


In any conversation where there is a potential for disagreement, it’s tempting to try to force – strongarm – the other person in to compliance or agreement. While that sometimes works, it’s not generally the best way to …

Dealing with Two Potential Communication Challenges

April 6th, 2021


Two situations frequently occur in leadership communication: the conversation that has gone off on a tangent and the conversation that need more time and you either don’t have the time or the information to finish it. …

Learning from Skilled Negotiators

March 30th, 2021


What does leadership communication share with negotiation? In a word – persuasion. Coaching, implementing change, and collaborative problem solving …

Disagree Without Being Disagreeable

March 23rd, 2021


When you disagree with another person's perspective, solution, or opinion, a very natural approach is to simply disagree. And, that approach rarely …

Four Ways to Improve Your Communication Effectiveness

March 16th, 2021


This week’s episode collects a number of ideas from across the skills of effective communicators and combines them in to a list of four specific …

Two Sides of the Need to Be Heard and Understood

March 9th, 2021


It is important to remember that people need to be heard and understood and that the better we do that for others, the more likely they are to buy-in to what we are trying to achieve. We also need to beware of how our …

Put Reciprocity to Work

March 2nd, 2021


This episode is more about what you communicate with your decisions and actions than it is about your words. The focus is on two things leaders do (often unintentionally) that undermines trust in their team because of …

Building Relationships in a Remote World with Kevin Eikenberry

February 23rd, 2021


In our third episode of three where we are discussing important ideas from his book, The Long Distance Teammate, Kevin Eikenberry and I look at …

Building Trust in a Remote World with Kevin Eikenberry

February 16th, 2021


Kevin Eikenberry is with me for episode 2 where we discuss important concepts from his new book, The Long Distance Teammate. In this episode, we …

The Meaning of Ethical Visibility with Kevin Eikenberry

February 9th, 2021


Joining me this week is Kevin Eikenberry, co-author of The Long Distance Teammate. Kevin is with me for 3 episodes of Talk Like a Leader as we …

Team Member to Team Mate with Wayne Turmel

February 2nd, 2021


This week I’m talking with my friend and colleague Wayne Turmel about an important concept from his new book, The Long Distance Teammate. Listen as …

100 Episodes - Looking Back and Looking Forward

January 26th, 2021


This week marks the 100th episode of Talk Like a Leader. I’m both looking back and looking forward. In this episode, I’m pointing back to the ten most downloaded episodes so far, what that tells me, and my plans for the …

What it Means to Talk Like a Leader - Revisited

January 19th, 2021


This is episode 99 of Talk Like a Leader. I’ve got some great guests coming in the next few weeks. So, I’m taking a chance to look back a bit and summarize this week. In this episode I’m revisiting my thoughts on what …

You Can Never Be Too Clear

January 12th, 2021


As George Bernard Shaw said: “The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.” As a leader, it’s easy to tell people something one time or send a single email and assume that they …

The Seven Deadly Sins of Conflict Resolution

January 5th, 2021


Conflict and other difficult conversations are not fun and often don’t go well. They often don’t go well because we do things during the conversation …

Be at Peace

December 29th, 2020


This is the last episode of 2020 and it concludes a series for four episodes drawing inspiration from the weeks of Advent. There will be challenges and problems in your leadership journey. In this episode, I’m proposing …

Joy in the Journey

December 22nd, 2020


This is the third in a series of four episodes inspired by the weeks of Advent. This week I’m looking at bringing joy to your leadership journey and …

Love in Leadership

December 15th, 2020


This episode continues a series of four episodes inspired by the weeks of Advent. As I record this episode, we have just passed the Sunday of Advent that represents love. So, I’m exploring how love builds leadership and …

Creating Hope

December 8th, 2020


This week is the first week of Advent 2020 and the theme for the week is hope, and that is the source of my inspiration for this episode. Hope creates motivation and energy while the opposite of hope – despair – …

Defer with an Explanation

December 1st, 2020


At some time in your leadership journey, you will need to manage a timing or priority conflict with another person. They will stop you in the hall while you are on your way to a meeting and ask for a quick decision. You …

In Search of Positive

November 24th, 2020


Most people thrive in environments where there are more positive experiences than negative experiences, and it can be difficult to create that type …

Head Mistakes vs. Heart Mistakes

November 17th, 2020


Mistakes. We all make them, and there are two different kinds with two completely different implications. In this episode, I’m looking at the difference between head mistakes and heart mistakes, how to handle them both …

Start with "Yes"

November 10th, 2020


While learning to say “No” is a useful and powerful leadership skill, it can be the end of a conversation. And, while it is sometimes necessary to …

Make Leadership Communication a Habit

November 3rd, 2020


Habits are a funny thing. They can help you. They can hurt you. And, they happen automatically without conscious thought. This week, I’m sharing some thoughts on communication habits and making a suggestion to help you …

Not All Feedback is Negative

October 27th, 2020


Recently, I had an experience that revealed to me my true, subconscious view of the word feedback. In this episode, I’ll share that experience, and what I learned from it. I’ll also share thoughts on how to apply that …

Communication Blindspots Intensified by Remote Work

October 20th, 2020


The remote work environment and it’s stressors can drive you and others deeper into your own communication blindspots. This week, I’m taking a look at some possible blindspots of each DISC style so we can look out for …

Can Your Personality Change Over Time?

October 13th, 2020


When people take a DISC assessment, they often wonder if their style can change over time. The question shows up in two common ways: Either they …

Lessons from Politicians: What NOT to Do in Leadership Communication

October 6th, 2020


In this election season, we get to observe politicians from both major parties and from all political perspectives make their case for why they …

Make Yourself Non-Threatening

September 29th, 2020


In a prior series of episodes, I explored the idea of unintentional threat triggers (and how to avoid them) using the DISC model as a framework. Last week, I used David Rock’s SCARF model to explore how to keep your …

If You Can Name It, You Can Tame It

September 22nd, 2020


A great deal of Talking Like a Leader depends on remaining calm and rational in difficult – sometimes irritating – situations. Remaining calm and …

Coaching Isn't Telling: A Lesson Learned the Hard Way

September 15th, 2020


When you are coaching a team member for improved performance, it is very tempting to just tell them what needs to be done so you can get on to the next task on your list. Unfortunately, telling people what to do rarely …

Leading Remotely: The Importance of Intentionality

September 8th, 2020


As working from home stretches to months rather than weeks, leaders find themselves planning for and communicating about longer time horizons while working from home and communicating with their teams who are also …

Chronic Conflict: It Gets Worse Before It Gets Better

September 1st, 2020


Like a home project that gets delayed for too long, chronic conflicts will continue to get worse the longer we ignore them. Also like a home project, confronting the conflict will likely make it worse in the short-term …

More Than Techniques - The Importance of Character

August 25th, 2020


As you work to develop your communication techniques to better Talk Like a Leader, I encourage you to consider the importance of character development on both your growth as a leader and your ability to communicate as …

Be Patient and Persistent

August 18th, 2020


One of the biggest challenges I face in communication is remaining patient when an idea is very clear to me and it's not clear to the person with …

Speak to Actions and Results Rather Than to Character and Intelligence

August 11th, 2020


When we get frustrated with a person and allow our frustration to vent in the form of an attack on their character and intelligence, we resort to what is known as an ad hominem attack. This rarely works well in debate …

How the DISC Model Can Cause Problems for You

August 4th, 2020


Properly applied, the DISC model is a powerful tool to help you become a better communicator. Improperly applied, it can cause significant problems …

Avoiding Confirmation Bias - Stay Curious

July 28th, 2020


A challenge that we all face in leadership communication is the struggle to fairly evaluate all sides of an issue before making a decision, and we all share the problem of confirmation bias. Most, if not all, people …

The Coaching Mindset with Carl Smith - Cautious Style

July 21st, 2020


This is our final episode in a 5-part series of conversations about the coaching mindset. Carl Smith is my guest, and we discuss the contribution Cautious style people bring to coaching conversations. As in the other …

The Coaching Mindset with Carl Smith - Supportive Style

July 14th, 2020


Continuing our discussion about the coaching mindset, Carl Smith and I consider the Supportive style contribution to coaching. Carl shares what he has learned as a Supportive style coach and I share some observations …

The Coaching Mindset - Inspiring Style

July 7th, 2020


This week, Carl Smith and I turn our attention to coaching discussions when one party has a primarily Inspiring trait using the DISC model …

The Coaching Mindset - Dominant Style

June 30th, 2020


In this episode, Carl Smith and I get more specific about coaching mindsets. Using the DISC model as a framework for understanding, we discuss what it means to be a Dominant style coach and how to coach Dominant style …

The Coaching Mindset with Carl Smith

June 23rd, 2020


Continuing in the theme of considering our mindsets, this episode kicks off a 5-episode series on the coaching mindset. I'm joined by my friend and …

What Mindsets Do You Use to Form Your Frames?

June 16th, 2020


My conversation with Kevin Eikenberry about the importance of how you frame a problem continues in this episode. We discuss the meta-frame - or …

The Importance of How You Frame a Problem with Kevin Eikenberry

June 9th, 2020


In this episode, Kevin Eikenberry joins me for a conversation about the importance of how you frame a problem when you communicate and work with …

Provide Data Both Accurately and Honestly

June 2nd, 2020


In prior episodes I have talked about Providing Context When You Share Data and Learning to Speak Accurately. In this episode, I'm looking at the idea of speaking accurately from a slightly different angle. This …

Learn to Listen Accurately

May 26th, 2020


Last week, I discussed speaking accurately. This week, I'll explore accuracy on the other side of communication - listening. Just as speaking accurately moves you towards greater clarity and buy-in, listening accurately …

Learn to Speak Accurately

May 19th, 2020


Striking the balance between overstating and understating a problem or situation depends on accurate speech. In this episode, I'll share thoughts on how to speak more accurately and why it matters.

Additional Leadership …

Make Yourself Accessible

May 12th, 2020


This podcast is about more than just talking or sending messages. It's about the broader context of leadership communication. In this episode, I'll share a story with you about what happens when you don't make yourself …

Beware of Transferred Aggression

May 5th, 2020


As a society, we are now well in to the first shutdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. While I can't foretell the future exactly, it appears that it …

Fix the Problem Not the Blame

April 28th, 2020


When you are confronted with a problem it's easy to drift toward finding the person to blame. A better leadership response is to find the source of the problem and fix that rather than finding the person to blame. In …

Be Sensitive to Your Team's Environment

April 21st, 2020


Seeing things from another person's point of view is a key element in Talking Like a Leader. When you can't see your team's environment, it's easy to …

Provide Context When You Share Data

April 14th, 2020


Leaders frequently need to communicate data in the form of numbers. When you're working with a team of people who know the context you operate in, those numbers probably make sense. But... What if they don't? What if …

Business Critical or Personal Desire

April 7th, 2020


As we confront the stresses and pressures of the COVID-19 pandemic and what we must do to adjust, it's easy to commingle our personal wishes and desires about the way we wish things were with the actual demands of the …

Understanding Time Perspectives - People Orientation

March 31st, 2020


This conversation with Carl Smith about time perspectives continues this week. This is the third of three episodes related to how people view and communicate about time. In this episode, Carl and I will explore ways …

Understanding Time Perspectives - Task Orientation

March 24th, 2020


This week, we continue the conversation with Carl Smith about time perspectives that we started two weeks ago. In this episode, Carl and I will explore ways that people with a primary task orientation view time, how …

When You Suddenly Find Yourself Leading Remotely

March 17th, 2020


As businesses around the country make quick adjustments to deal with the coronavirus outbreak, many people suddenly find themselves leading - at least for a short time - a remote team. This week, my guest is co-founder …

Different Ways That People View Time

March 10th, 2020


Not everyone views time the same way, and those differences can become major drivers of stress, frustration, and conflict. This is the first of three episodes where Carl Smith and I explore different perspectives on …

The Do's and Don'ts of Coaching Conversations

March 3rd, 2020


When we try to coach people towards higher performance, it's easy to get frustrated and to make some common coaching mistakes. In this episode, I'll define the difference between coaching and discipline and give you …

The Pancake Theory of Communication

February 25th, 2020


In honor of National Pancake Day, I'm discussing the Pancake Theory of Communication. How is communication like a pancake? What can we learn about communication from pancakes? Tune in to find out.

Additional Leadership …

Championing Change

February 18th, 2020


Change is emotional, and change is a choice. As leaders, we hope to help others make the choice to change rather than feel like they got forced to change. Using the four levers of change and learning a simple …

Speaking of Change

February 11th, 2020


Change communication is a topic that nearly warrants its own podcast. It's complicated, it's messy, and it has lots of conditional issues to consider. And, it's worth talking about on this podcast. In this episode, I'll …

Impact of Trust

February 4th, 2020


Carl Smith and I continue our conversation on building trust. This week, we'll discuss less the process of building trust and more the impact of it with specific examples from our experience that illustrate the …

Thoughts on Building Trust

January 28th, 2020


Different people think about and approach building trust in different ways. In this episode, Carl Smith and I discuss the two sides of trust and how understanding them can help you build trust with more intentionality.

What it Means to Talk Like a Leader with JJ Brun

January 21st, 2020


In this episode I'm excited to welcome my long time friend and colleague JJ Brun to the podcast. JJ is a communication and relationship expert from …

With or For Rather than To

January 14th, 2020


I recently re-read what has become a leadership classic - Leadership and Self-Deception. It reminded me of the ways we interact with others as objects rather than as people. It also reminded me that how we use words can …

Three Communication Resolutions

January 7th, 2020


As we enter a new year, the idea of reflecting on the past year and thinking about changes for the new one are on many people's minds. Two weeks with grandchildren has given me a refreshed perspective on leadership …

Think Beyond THIS Conversation

December 31st, 2019


As we look forward to next year, many people reflect on the past and set goals for the future. This time of year can lead to focusing on specific time frames like the first quarter or the next year. This finite approach …

These Ideas Work with Family Too

December 24th, 2019


Today, Christmas Eve, marks a day when many people will either be with family or about to be with family that they do not see on a regular basis. In …

What It Means to Talk Like a Leader with Don Mann

December 16th, 2019


This week, I have the honor of speaking with retired SEAL Team 6 member, adventure athlete, and NY Times best selling author Don Mann. Don has long …

The Power of Questions

December 10th, 2019


Leaders often know exactly what they want done and how they want it done, and telling people what to do is not likely to invite cooperation and enthusiastic engagement. Questions are better than statements for engaging …

Overcoming Other People's Perceptions of You

December 3rd, 2019


Leaders often find themselves in the position of having their motives and intentions misunderstood and misinterpreted. In today's episode, I'll share one specific example of how to overcome potentially negative …

Focusing on Gratitude to Talk Like a Leader

November 26th, 2019


Finding ways to stay positive, encouraging, and supportive rather than negative, critical, and judgmental of others is a powerful strategy in your …

Leadership Communication Mindset with Carl Smith

November 19th, 2019


How you think about your communications with others - your intentions and mindset - will make a big impact on your long-term communication effectiveness. In this episode, Carl Smith and I briefly explore the impact of …

Managing Expectations and Building Trust with Carl Smith

November 12th, 2019


Unmet expectations - spoken or otherwise - can lead to dissatisfaction and damaged trust. Damaged trust can, in turn, can slow communication and …

Accept, Approve, and Appreciate Others

November 4th, 2019


How we think about others affects how we interact with them, and how we interact with them often reveals how we think about them. This week, I'm covering three actions we can take towards others that will improve both …

Unintentional Threat Triggers - Cautious Style

October 29th, 2019


This episode is the final episode of a 4 episode series looking at the ways each of us communicate and interact with others that can unintentionally create the perception of threat in other people. This week, I'm …

Unintentional Threat Triggers - Supportive Style

October 22nd, 2019


This episode is the third of four episodes looking at the ways each of us communicate and interact with others that can unintentionally create the perception of threat in other people. This week, I'm focusing on both …

Unintentional Threat Triggers - Inspiring Style

October 15th, 2019


This episode is the second of four episodes looking at the ways each of us communicate and interact with others that can unintentionally create the perception of threat in other people. This week, I'm focusing on both …

Unintentional Threat Triggers - Dominant Style

October 8th, 2019


We all communicate in ways that "trigger" other people. If you have Dominant style communication traits , you can unintentionally cause a perception of threat for people who don't share this trait with you. If you don't …

How Do You Talk to Yourself?

October 1st, 2019


We all have an inner voice, and we talk to ourselves. If this voice is negative, it can create problems for you as a leader. This week, we'll consider how you talk to yourself and how you can make that internal dialogue …

Five Ways to Deescalate Conflict

September 24th, 2019


In this episode, I'll package together five conflict resolution strategies in one place. This episode compiles single points I've made in other …

Communicate in a Way that Does NOT Convey Threat

September 17th, 2019


There are things that all of us do that subtly and unintentionally create a feeling of threat in other people. When we do that, our communication effectiveness plummets. In this episode, I'll share three places where we …

Three Things to Consider in Written Communication

September 10th, 2019


Today's episode focuses on written communication and three things to consider (plus a bonus idea or two) before you write your message. As leading …

Listening - The Other Side of Communication

September 3rd, 2019


While this podcast is titled "Talk Like a Leader," my real intent is to explore all the different ways we can become better communicators. In this episode, I'm looking at the listening side of communication. We'll …

What It Means to Talk Like a Leader with Eric Levos

August 27th, 2019


Inviting other people to share their perspective is something that I love to do on this podcast. This week, my long-time customer, colleague, and …

Three Things to Consider Before You Choose a Communication Technique

August 20th, 2019


As a leader, you will communicate with people in many different ways and in many different situations. You'll be in meetings, in coaching conversations, and responding to emails. The general principles of communication …

What it Means to Talk Like a Leader with Kevin Eikenberry

August 13th, 2019


Leadership expert, Kevin Eikenberry, joins me on this episode to discuss what it means to talk like a leader. Kevin has both deep and broad experience in both leading and helping leaders develop. Listen in as he shares …

Stay Positive, Avoid Negative

August 6th, 2019


When we interact with other people, observe other people, and think about other people, we can go either positive or negative. If we focus on the negative, we likely experience more of it. If we focus on the positive, …

Talk About What You DO Want

July 30th, 2019


Many types of communication that come naturally and easily to us are not necessarily the best or most effective ways to communicate our vision, desires, and expectations. Some things that seem natural and normal …

Why Use Communication Models and Why I Use DISC

July 23rd, 2019


Recently, a listener asked why I use the DISC model and what I think of other models. Great question! In this episode, I'll share my thoughts on the general value of using communication models to become a more effective …

What Talking Like a Leader Means to Me

July 16th, 2019


In this episode, Guy shares what talking like a leader means to him. After several episodes focused primarily on the skills of leadership communication, Guy shares his perspective on combining the right mindset, …

Using the Power of Apology

July 9th, 2019


Many people struggle with apologizing when it could move a difficult situation forward. It's often said that leaders should never apologize and that …

What It Means to Talk Like a Leader with Tom Butera

July 2nd, 2019


In this episode you'll learn from an experienced manufacturing leader, Tom Butera. Tom has been my friend, colleague, and customer for 16 years now, …

Three Ways to Deal with an Angry Person

June 25th, 2019


At some point in your leadership journey, probably at several points, you'll need to deal with a person who is angry. Common natural responses like withdrawing or getting angry typically don't work well. They often …

Watch What You Say (About People)

June 18th, 2019


You're probably pretty good about what you say when you're with people. You're on your game. You're positive, encouraging, and considerate. The question to consider for this episode is this: What do you say about people …

What NOT to Do with the DISC Model

June 11th, 2019


Communication and behavior models like the DISC model are great tools for building, communicating with, and inspiring your team. Used appropriately, …

Learn to Manage Expectations

June 4th, 2019


When experience does not match expectations, people get frustrated, stressed, and angry. Frustrated, stressed, and angry people rarely work with …

Focus on the Future

May 28th, 2019


A common challenge leaders face is the tendency to drift into past focused conversations when trying to solve problems or coach team members. A key …

Try to Relate to Your Opponent

May 21st, 2019


When you find yourself in a conflict situation, it is tempting to "go on the attack" to make your point. Winning the argument can take center stage in your mind. And, that approach rarely ends well for either person. In …

How to Empower by DISC Style with Carl Smith

May 14th, 2019


This is the last of five episodes where I discuss the Four E's of Leadership (Engage, Encourage, Equip, and Empower) with my friend and colleague

How to Equip by DISC Style with Carl Smith

May 7th, 2019


Carl Smith, Master Trainer of the DISC model, returns to continue our conversation about the Four E's of Leadership (Engage, Encourage, Equip, and Empower). In this episode, we first explore the difference between …

Keep Learning and Searching with Carl Smith

April 30th, 2019


My conversation with Carl continues in this episode. This is the third of five conversations we are having based on one part of our first conversation on this podcast. In this episode, we discuss what each of us is …

How to Engage by DISC Style with Carl Smith

April 23rd, 2019


Carl Smith, Master Trainer of the DISC model, returns for the second conversation triggered by the conversation Carl and I had the first time he visited. In this episode, we explore how to Engage people based on their

How to Encourage by DISC Style with Carl Smith

April 16th, 2019


Carl Smith, Master Trainer of the DISC model, returns for a conversation about how to Encourage people based on their DISC communication style. This conversation is the first of a series of five conversations triggered …

What It Means to Talk Like a Leader with Carl Smith

April 9th, 2019


Carl Smith is a Master Trainer of the DISC Model of Human Behavior. He has helped leaders at all levels learn better, more effective communication skills for over 20 years. He teaches, trains, coaches, and develops …

The DISC Model of Human Behavior

April 2nd, 2019


A critical skill for learning to Talk Like a Leader is seeing a situation and framing your communication from the perspective of the other person. …

Question What You Know is True

March 26th, 2019


It's incredibly tempting to run with what you know before you investigate and inquire. It's easy to fill in gaps in understanding with assumptions based on your past experiences, and it can be disastrous for …

Six Questions for Collaborative Communication

March 19th, 2019


Collaboration is a big part of team work and joint problem solving. Leading a team meeting, coaching a team member on their performance, setting …

Three Ways to Irritate Others and How to Correct It

March 12th, 2019


In your Leadership journey, you will inevitably have to speak with someone who is irritated or angry. While you can’t avoid the situation entirely, you can learn to minimize the risk that you will be the one to …

Emotions are the Barrier to Change

March 12th, 2019


When you take a Leadership role, you enter the change game. Change is a constant for people who aspire to lead. If you want to get better and …

Data Tells and Stories Sell

March 12th, 2019


Leaders rarely need to sell physical products or services to their teams, and that doesn’t mean they don’t sell. Instead of physical goods and services, Leaders sell ideas, concepts, commitment, motivation, and focus. …

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