Yearly Archives: 2016

Foul Language at Work—To Confront or Not to Confront?

Dear David, I’m in my sixties, and it bothers me when I hear people in the office using what I consider to be foul language, most often the “F-word”. This happens when they are on the phone having personal conversations and sometimes in internal office meetings. This language seems ingrained in the younger employees, and [...]



How a Culture of Silence Eats Away at Your Company

Most people think they will speak up when something negative happens at work, but few actually do. Take these examples from a recent survey we did with managers and employees: “We had an assistant who created a very adversarial atmosphere. We walked on eggshells around her. People would rather do her work themselves than engage [...]

Be a good Actor

You’re Not A Good Enough Actor

In the early 1980s, I slowly transitioned from teaching MBA classes to designing corporate training programs. Surprisingly, with this change in focus, my design partners and I soon found ourselves in, of all places, Hollywood—not the glamorous version that produces dazzling movies, but the not-so-glamorous version that produces industrial videos. Here’s what took us to [...]

How to Broach a Difficult Topic?

  Dear Crucial Skills, As the mother of two adult children who are each very intelligent and gainfully employed, I try and stay out of their personal decisions. However, one of them started smoking during his high school years. The smoking has continued for almost twenty years. His father and I worry about his health [...]