Communication essentials: judging

If you’ve been reading this blog or my ‘ben thinking’ email you know two things are true about the info I share:

1. I love Fast Company articles – a great go-to read.
2. I hate sharing ‘old’ articles.

So consider this your warning for today’s read as I go against both of those things.

I came across this Fast Company article in a tweet.

The click bait? ‘You might want to trim these words from your vocabulary.’

The article: Six Verbs That Make You Sound Weak (No Matter Your Job Title)

The date: 2018

The six words (I’ll save you the read):
1. Think
2. Need
3. Want
4. Guess
5. Hope
6. Suppose

Let me see if I can use all six to sum up my thoughts on this outdated read:

I think we need to redefine how we measure someone’s ability if we want to expand our search for talent and improve employer brand. I guess we have made some huge strides in the past three years – do you suppose we will continue in this direction? That’s my hope.

Isn’t it amazing how far we’ve come in a short amount of time when you consider the types of pieces we were writing, reading and sharing a few years ago? Truth be told, I don’t know if I ever would have had a problem with these words – I use all of them a lot. However, viewed through the lens of how employer brands and leadership roles have changed, these don’t hold up well.

So what six words should we avoid today? Um, none? Use whatever words you want. Express and communicate as you see fit. And expect your company, your employers and leaders to listen without judgement. Words are powerful because of the meaning people assign to them. Which makes it harder to communicate. And harder to listen.

The category this article was filed under is ‘How to be a success at everything.’ I get the catch. But for the sake of this blog … we aren’t and can’t be a success at everything. That’s what makes us human. Recognizing that is what makes us great leaders. Listening without expecting everyone else to be successful at everything is what makes others great.