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Don’t Make This Mistake in a Business Conversation: Add Suspense

conversation starters May 01, 2019

Suspense in a movie keeps you interested and intrigued. Add the element of suspense to conversations and your colleagues will be confused and frustrated.

When you keep people in suspense and fail to reveal the reason for the conversation or what you hope to accomplish, you give them the opportunity to make up a story.

Their narrative might not match your objective. In fact, I can almost guarantee it won’t because you don’t work (or live) with mind-readers.

Effective business communication requires the ability to communicate a message clearly which is the opposite of leaving colleagues in suspense by saying things like: “I’ve got an idea. Let’s talk tomorrow.”

Seems simple enough. Except the person receiving that message could be thinking:

“Got an idea about what?”

“About how to help me finish a project ahead of schedule?”

“Is it an idea that’s going to add more work to my plate and make my life difficult?”

“What if the idea is a way to replace me?”

You might not realize your statement is full of suspense (or drama) but when you start parsing out info to colleagues that’s exactly what it sounds like.

It’s also a mistake you shouldn’t make in a business conversation.

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