Watch Your Language!

... and I'm not just talking about swearing.

This blog has been a cathartic exercise for me, a way to put down the thoughts and musings that constantly tumble about in my mind.  The fact that people read them and comment about these writings is pure bonus.

It also feeds the analytical side of my personality. (For a great analysis of the analytical mind, see Allan Norton's article in Tech Republic - 10 curses of the analytical thinker).

I love to check the stats page of the blog and see which postings get activity, and the sites (and countries) from which my postings are accessed.

Which leads me to today's post.

Communication skills are always listed near the top on the desired traits of a leader. They must be exceptional in speaking, presenting, confronting, motivating and explaining things clearly, and without risk of misinterpretation.

Even with all the experience I've had in front of people, I learned a lesson.

The posting that got the most hits, from the most places was titled "The Soft Stuff is the Hard Stuff".

Now, I am not naive, and fully understand the concept of double entedre.  In this case I was so locked into being witty in my title, (which for those of you who haven't read it, deals with skills in the "soft" areas of management) that I missed the fact that not everybody on Google thinks the way I do.  My attempt at a witty headline created an issue of interpretation.

When I started getting hits from porn sites, I clued in.

The title of the posting has been changed - it is now "The Soft Skills, are the Hard Skills"

While this is a rather benign example, it is a good reminder for me as a leader and blogger to watch my messaging.  Am I being absolutely clear in my message? Is there opportunity for misinterpretation?  Are people hearing what I am trying to say?

How about you? Any good examples where you've learned this lesson in communication?


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