Wednesday, February 1, 2023

How to Add Polish to Your Interpersonal Communication

E-mail, IM, Skype, phone, snail mail --- there are more vehicles for communication than ever before.   But when it comes to truly effective communication, there is nothing as good as face-to-face meetings.  That’s because more than 90 percent of the communication we do is nonverbal.  How can you possibly accomplish your communications objectives if the person you are communicating with receives only 10 percent of your message?



Add Strength to Your Words.  When I was growing up I was repeatedly told, “It’s not what you say, it’s how you say it.”  That’s what nonverbal communication speaks to. When you meet with someone, you have the opportunity to send your entire message and they have the ability to truly embrace it.  You can share the tone and volume with your voice and place emphasis on certain words.  Your facial expressions, gestures, and body language convey additional meaning that is totally lost with computer-based communications.  There is little room for misunderstanding.

Power Up Your Nonverbal Communication.  When you get together with someone, they have the chance to experience the real you.  If you want to make a good impression you’ll dress properly, and make sure your hair and nails are clean.  You’ll lead with a firm handshake that demonstrates self-confidence and follow up with good eye contact and a winning smile.

Tune In to Feedback. Meeting with someone is more personal than using high tech lines of communication.  It gives you the opportunity to build a bond and establish trust.  When you’re talking, you get immediate feedback from the person you are with.  If the response is not what you expected or hoped for, you are in a position to modify it on the spot.

Ramp Up Your Listening Skills. A face-to-face meeting give you the opportunity to listen.  And listening is the most important communication skill we have.  After all, you don’t learn anything when you are talking.  You already know all about what you have to say.  It is when we listen to others that we have the chance to learn about them and what they are sharing.

Being an effective listener means asking open-ended questions and listening carefully to the answers.  Avoid the tendency to interrupt or advise.  Cultivate the ability to make the person you are listening to feel like they are the center of your world while they are speaking.  Let them see how interested you are in what they have to say -- even if you really aren’t.  Actively listen.  That means listening intently and processing the information so you are in a position to respond in a thoughtful manner.  Be sure to read between the lines.  And be cognizant of their nonverbal behaviors.

Show That You Care.  Face-to-face communication is an opportunity to establish a common bond.  Make an effort to find an interest that you share. Be sincere.  Be interested.  Be giving. Supplementing your newly polished communication skills with the knowledge you care can work miracles with your interpersonal communication.

 












Monday, January 23, 2023

How to Build Leadership Skills and Develop Powerful Teams

Leaders are not born.  They are made.  To be an effective leader one must cultivate essential skills and at the same time be cognizant of the needs of the people who will follow you. Strong leaders set an example with their passion and energy, their determination to set a good example, and their willingness to take responsibility. They ask for and learn from feedback to focus on tasks at hand and achieve positive results. Everyone has the potential to take a leadership role under different circumstances.  Knowing how to proceed is critical when the occasion arises.



Build Relationships.  Leaders set forth values and guiding principles while promoting caring and respect for others. They establish common ground and mutuality of purpose, making sure everyone benefits.  You do not have to be at the top of the totem pole to lead.  Cultivate face-to-face interactions. Learn to leapfrog--to interact at all organizational levels in order to develop contacts and build relationships.

Empower Those Around You.  Listen to those around you before establishing a plan.  Let those who are involved know that what is going to be accomplished is their idea. Set goals and inspire your followers to do their very best.  Getting people to focus on what needs to be done will help facilitate a quicker resolution.  You may delegate tasks and assign responsibilities but it is best not to tell people what to do. Create a nurturing environment that encourages participants to achieve and rely on their resourcefulness in the process. Then, guide them with a softer touch that will deliver better results. And don’t forget to give credit.

Mentor Others. Great leaders are more than positive role models.  They are mentors who provide a nurturing and challenging environment in which people can grow and develop. You can be an effective leader by participating in formal and informal mentoring.  Help those you mentor move through different positions, and draw on your network to refer, find jobs, and open doors for them.  Always be available to give constructive advice and suggestions.

Promote Internal Communication.  Create an atmosphere of fulfillment that fosters information flow and open dialogue while keeping everyone in the loop. Offer simple objectives communicated easily.  Make sure you repeat and clarify as much as needed. Consider establishing internal panels of experts to whom you can refer.  This will not only facilitate the completion of tasks, it will make those you select feel good about the contribution they are making.  If something doesn’t go as planned, don’t place blame.  A leader knows this is counterproductive.

Nurture Teams. Create excitement and build consensus.  Then take the exceptionally talented people you have found and encourage them to work as a team with the rest of the group.  Promote participation and organize everyone involved to grow effective teams that happily produce positive outcomes. And don’t forget that pat on the back.  We all like to receive a compliment when we have done a good job.

Being a good leader is a tough job.  But it is also a rewarding one.  Showing people the way and getting them to work together to achieve a common objective can be personally rewarding.  Seeing goals achieved is something leaders and teams can take great pleasure in.

What Are The Odds? 1.23.23. 23K

Everything is not always business as usual. Sometimes it's great to sit back and relax or stand up and cheer. Today, 1.23.23, Happy Birthday Baby hit 23,000 views on YouTube. If you have a moment to reflect on happiness and joy, you'll find it with my birthday video. 






Monday, November 7, 2022

Carol's Back



Ten years ago I made the decision to start working on my own projects only. During that time I wrote several musicals (Bernhardt On Broadway, Mrs. President Lincoln and 2020: The Musical) and went on tour with one of them. It was truly liberating and great fun.

Last year, although I was no longer promoting my services, I was contacted by several people who needed writing and coaching. I took on this work and found it great to be out in the workplace again. 

While I plan to continue to work on my own projects, I am also accepting assignments. I'm confident this is the right move for me and look forward to helping others with their communication needs. I recently volunteered my services to New Enterprise Forum (NEF) and look forward to helping entrepreneurs who come to that organization.

In addition to writing and marketing, I plan to do some speaking and coaching. Last year I coached a young person applying to medical school and helped him with his interviewing skills. It was very rewarding to hear the positive feedback he received as a result and the professional schools where he was accepted for study.

In the past I promoted my services in a number of publications but primarily Crain's Detroit Business. That was very effective at an earlier time in my career. Having helped many businesses and individuals with advertising and promotion, I will now pursue other avenues.

I am looking forward to an exciting 2023 filled all kinds of new adventures and challenges!

***

*Dunitz run a successful communications and creative services company for fifteen years and has written numerous books, executive speeches, scripts, websites and other marketing materials. She has also written and composed four musical plays. Her specialty is taking anything and making it interesting and easy-to-understand.

Dunitz can be contacted at 734.237.6614 or cdunitz@gmail.com.

 



Monday, June 17, 2019

Carol Dunitz Interviewed about "2020: The Musical" for Access Ann Arbor


I am featured on CTN’s Access Ann Arbor this month in a 30-minute interview about 2020: The Musical.  The interview can also be seen on YouTube at: 



2020: The Musical is now complete and ready for the road. There are twenty original songs about the issues we all care about. The songs with issues in parentheses where needed are:

All for One (tax reform)
Citizens United Gone (campaign finance reform)
Democrats Forever
Dump the Trump in 2020
Eh Boy (criminal justice reform)
Flying Blind (universal healthcare)
Hands Down Better (homophobia)
I Want to Play with You (lobbyist reform)
Isaac and Ishmael (middle east conflict)
Let’s Take Out the NRA (gun control)
My Body, My Choice (reproductive rights)
On Our Way (female president)
Republican Do Si Do
Simple Times Gone By (global warming)
Stack the Deck (gerrymandering, voter purging)
Sunday Bloody Sunday (racism)
The Border Wall Tango
The Public Wants (Term Limits)
This Life Shared in Poverty (minimum wage)
Happy Birthday Baby (novelty song)

I am currently putting the finishing touches on 2020themusical.com which will include music from all the songs and video as it comes available. I expect to start marketing next week.

This is a full-length musical with about an hour of music. It leans left, is provocative and interactive. Perfect for political fundraisers as well as theatrical venues. For more information, please email me at cdunitz at gmail dot com or visit the site. 


Friday, April 12, 2019

2020: The Musical Taking Shape


2020: THE MUSICAL is taking shape. The URL has been obtained and the logo for the show is currently being designed. The show will have an online presence within several weeks. Guess how many songs there are in 2020: The Musical? That’s right, twenty. Twenty songs with melodies that stay with you and lyrics that cut to the chase.

2020: THE MUSICAL not only deals with the issues but is also entertaining and fun. You many even discover a couple of songs that take aim at the current POTUS. There are many styles of music from marches to folk, New Orleans jazz to blues, musical theatre to rap.

The songs cover all the issues we care about including: global warming, reproductive rights, voting rights, LGBTQ rights, minimum wage, racism, gerrymandering, criminal justice reform, term limits for the Supreme Court, universal healthcare, legislation for lobbyists, tax code reform, a woman president, the Middle East conflict and much more.

2020: THE MUSICAL is interactive. There will be lots of opportunity for members of the audience to share thoughts, ideas and feelings about the issues.

2020: THE MUSICAL is an excellent vehicle for fundraisers. A sampler of songs as well as a short video on the show will be available mid-May. Please let us know if you would like to receive links to these materials.


Music, script and lyrics by Carol Dunitz, who also performs. 


MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface)
from 2020: The Musical Song