Published September 22, 2009 by Dan Presser
The other night at the dinner table I was thinking about noise. Basically, because there was a lot of it. Pretty typical for many families, right? Everybody wanted to say something, had to say something, or just wanted to hear themselves say something. (That's usually me.) And, everybody has their own style of getting their point across. Some of our kids yell to be heard, some never stop talking, some never stop butting in, and some pick their moments. It's a snapshot of the world we live in now.
Communication is constant - Facebook, Twitter, websites, texting, phones, blogs, email, and even ol' fashioned mail. They're all just different tools to do the same thing...communicate. Some work better than others at different times. As I sat there eating my chicken pot pie and listening to the hubbub, I noticed a couple of things. I found myself tuning out "The Loud Talker." (He knows who he is.) I was also getting impatient with the person at the table, who shall remain anonymous, who kept interrupting to get his point across. (In his defense, he's much younger than the rest of us.) Although, I'll admit "The Interrupter" does give us some belly laughs with his non-sequitur comments.
Then, something happened when the "Non-Stop Talker" took a breath. (She knows who she is.) That's when one family member I'll call, "The Quiet One" (with apologies to George Harrison) spoke his piece. We all listened to his story about what happened when an argument broke out in the hallway at school. It's like we were all being let in on the secret of Area 51. He had a good story to tell. His timing was right. We all got the message. "The Quiet One" went back to his chicken pot pie. He'll have another story in due time. For me, it was a perfect example of great communication. It's kind of a mantra around here - tell good stories that people want or need to hear. And, don't let the "noise" or "babble" of over-production get in the way of the message. Keep it authentic, well-timed, and simple. Sounds like an internet video. Stay tuned for more on that in future blogs.
Dan tries one form of communication>
Now, if you want to warn people about a fire in a crowded building, "The Quiet One's" approach probably isn't the best option. Try shouting. Like I said, some communication works better than others at different times.