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© Copyright 2019 Richard Thomas

When one’s voice harmonizes with the voices of others beautiful, creative and productive things happen. Learn the skills of emotional intelligence and see your ideas resonate with others, and be influenced by others’ ideas and feelings to create beautiful collaborative and effective outcomes.

"Communicating and Connecting" Training and Coaching are applications of the Ethical Presence TM process.

Sample writing on "Communicating and Connecting" with Ethical Presence: 

 

Ah, not to be cut off, not through the slightest partition shut out from the law of the stars. The inner----what is it? if not intensified sky, hurled through with birds and deep with the winds of homecoming.

 

Rainer Maria Rilke, “Ah, Not To Be Cut Off”

 

Most of the difficulties that authentic professionals encounter when attempting to communicate with other stakeholders in their enterprises arise from a breakdown in the understanding and application of the soft skills of connecting and relating with others. The ability to build strong relationships with clients is a crucial skill for a professional to have in his toolkit, as necessary as his knowledge of his field and his ability to competently apply that knowledge.

A professional’s “EQ,” emotional quotient, is as important as a professional’s IQ. Daniel Goleman, in his book Emotional Intelligence, writes of the multiple and multitudinous kinds of intelligences that all people possess in statistically measureable capacities. He catalogues examples of some of the skills most often associated with different occupations: verbal (law), mathematic (engineering), spatial (architects), musical, and kinesthetic (dance and sports). Goleman emphasizes that a high level of “interpersonal intelligence” is the greatest predictor of success in any walk of life. A person who is interpersonally smart is a leader who can nurture and maintain human relationships. He has insight into what other people want. Interpersonal intelligence allows a person to successfully interact with his professional colleagues, customers and clients, and the overall community. It is the common denominator of competency in any job. It is the ability to communicate.

Communication skills can be learned. People possess varying amounts of natural ability in interpersonal intelligence, as they do in any other form of intelligence. One’s level of intelligence is not solely determined by one’s inherent gifts however. Interpersonal capacity can blossom and grow through the influence of personal desire to make it so. The drive to connect with others in order to serve them in an honorable way facilitates the development of communication skills in people regardless of their level of natural ability.

At times the most talented communicators have the most difficulty. Interpersonal communication is, well, a personal matter. Unresolved hurts and misunderstandings, even from unrelated areas of life, can obstruct connections with others. The 2012 movie Hope Springs is about two people in a formerly strong marriage that have grown apart. The couple has a talent for loving each other, and yet they are estranged. The film looks at the deconstruction of a wall of alienation that was inattentively built between them over the years. In all communication a person must be aware of herself, the person she wants to connect with and anything in the way of the connection. In Hope Springs Meryl Streep plays a wife who wants to repair her marriage. She goes to great lengths to do so and leads her husband on the journey. They work together and alone to uncover what is holding them back. It is a universal story depicting the struggle to find the insight and courage to be open to another person. Once the couple has healed their broken relationship their connections with the other people in their lives are deeper and more present.

Superior communication ability is a requirement of the practice of a profession at a high level. Many professionals see developing strong communication skills as a low priority compared to maintaining a substantive understanding of the law and managing their legal career as a business. They realize that they could communicate with a higher degree of authenticity and fluidity, and they see the value of doing so. They decide consciously or unconsciously, however, to meet the minimal professional requirements in this area and focus more on what they perceive as the necessities of their livelihood. This attitude is a mistake. Communicating well is, in the words of ancient Chinese philosophy, good for “offerings to the gods, feasting guests and everyday consumption.” Good communication is good business.

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