As We Speak: How to Make Your Point and Have It Stick

August 31, 2011 - by: Mike Maslanka 0 COMMENTS

Employment law attorney Mike Maslanka reviews As We Speak: How to Make Your Point and Have It Stick by Peter Meyers and Shann Nix.

If you’re thinking about a presentation you need to give, take a look at As We Speak: How to Make Your Point and Have It Stick, a new book by Peter Meyers and Shann Nix. Unfortunately, when you’re about to give a presentation, your reptile brain tells you to focus on your fears because that is how you will survive. After all, it worked 30,000 years ago. But Meyers and Nix advise against becoming a hostage to your fears. When we do that, we ask ourselves the wrong questions ― e.g., What is missing from my talk? Will I forget what to say? Will the audience find out I’m not as smart as they think I am?

Instead, the authors toss out this idea: Ask yourself questions that are embedded with positive presumptions ― e.g., What is the best part of this presentation? What am I most passionate about in this material? How can I make a difference? Meyers and Nix note that “positive presumption” questions aren’t positive thinking, which they describe as “trying to hypnotize yourself into a different mindset.” By contrast, positive presumption questions force you to think of new possibilities and shift your thinking from “Will I succeed?” to “How will I succeed?” The final advice is to wire your brain with the right questions well before the event.

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Awake at Work: 35 Practical Buddhist Principles for Discovering Clarity and Balance in the Midst of Work’s Chaos

June 22, 2011 - by: Mike Maslanka 0 COMMENTS

Employment law attorney Micheal Maslanka reviews Michael Carroll’s book Awake at Work: 35 Practical Buddhist Principles for Discovering Clarity and Balance in the Midst of Work’s Chaos. Maslanka offers a solution from a Harvard Business Review blog post for the problem of idiot compassion that Carroll identifies in the book.

In  Awake at Work: 35 Practical Buddhist Principles for Discovering Clarity and Balance in the Midst of Work’s Chaos, author Michael Carroll observes that helping your coworkers isn’t simple or easy. Often, well-intentioned individuals aren’t equipped to give effective help. When they try, it’s like the road to hell ― paved with good intentions. A greater mess is created by well-intentioned but uninformed people than by those who simply leave matters alone.

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Buy-in: Saving Your Good Ideas from Getting Shot Down

May 11, 2011 - by: Mike Maslanka 0 COMMENTS


Employment law attorney Michael P. Maslanka reviews Buy-in: Saving Your Good Ideas from Getting Shot Down by John P. Kotter, finding that it gives good advice on handling common objections to new ideas.

I highly recommend John P. Kotter’s new book Buy-In: Saving Your Good Idea from Getting Shot Down, which teaches you how to save an idea under attack by coworkers. First , he says don’t fire back if your idea is attacked. Instead, make efforts to understand the person’s point of view and respond respectfully.

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The Checklist Manifesto

January 31, 2011 - by: Dan Oswald 1 COMMENTS

I had been thinking recently about the importance of a good “to do” list, so when I stumbled upon the Atul Gawande’s book The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right. I decided it was fate and bought a copy. Now I must admit, I had not heard anything about the book despite the fact that it was a New York Times bestseller and had won “Best Book of the Month” from Amazon back in December 2009.

So I began to read assuming that my affection for “to do” lists was going to be confirmed. What I discovered was much more. Gawande may give a nod to the traditional “to do” list, but his checklists are a whole lot more. The checklists that Gawande advocates in his book are a concise list of standard operating procedures for any task, even some of the most complex imaginable.

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Work Relationships That Change the World: What’s Love-Love Got to Do with It?

September 29, 2010 - by: Tony Kessler 0 COMMENTS

Group Publisher of Employment Law at M. Lee Smith Tony Kessler reviews Tommy Spaulding’s book It’s Not Just Who You Know, finding the author offers an insightful look into the five different levels of relationships.

Thanks to Facebook, Twitter, Linked-In, blogs, and Skype, most of us have cyber-lists filled to the brim with friends these days. If we’re lucky, more than just a few of them fall into the category of “deep, lasting, ‘call me at 3:00 a.m. no matter what the reason’ relationships,” as author Tommy Spaulding, former CEO of Up With People, describes them in his new (first) book, It’s Not Just Who You Know: Transform Your Life (and Your Organization) by Turning Colleagues and Contacts into Lasting, Genuine Relationships.

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You Don’t Have to Be Blind to See

June 09, 2010 - by: admin 0 COMMENTS

In his blog The Oswald Letter, M. Lee Smith Publishers’ President Dan Oswald shares a story from YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE BLIND TO SEE by Jim Stovall about a woman determined to find her kidnapped baby. Ever the businessman, Oswald draws a connection between this mother who triumphs over adverse conditions that paralyze the village’s best warriors and the sort of dedicated employee every employer wants and that Oswald believes we all should strive to be. He challenges readers with the question “At work, do you care enough to go to any length to get the job done?”

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Who’s Got Your Back?

July 08, 2009 - by: 0 COMMENTS

Employment law attorney Michael Maslanka reviews Keith Ferrazzi’s book Who’s Got Your Back.

Author of the ubernetworking book Never Eat Alone: And Other Secrets to Success, One Relationship at a Time Keith Ferazzi’s latest book  Who’s Got Your Back: The Breakthrough Program to Build Deep, Trusting Relationships That Create Success–and Won’t Let You Fail argues that the the value of life is in candor and honest relationships. But many people can’t get there, for reasons rooted both in our reptile brains and in corporate policies.

Who's Got Your Back? by Keith Ferrazzi
First, let’s look at the reptile brain. Ferrazzi says people maintain carefully constructed self-images and resist hearing or seeing anything that disrupts those images. Why? “Part of the reason we don’t want to hear the truth is that we have a fear that it will metastasize through our entire being . . . If I am wrong about this one thing, I could be wrong about everything!”

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