Episodes

  • Why resistance isn’t always a bad thing.

    Friction — that’s Professor Huggy Rao’s metaphor for the forces that hamper workplace efficiency. But as he says, some friction can be helpful — if you know how to use it.

    In his book, The Friction Project: How Smart Leaders Make the Right Things Easier and the Wrong Things Harder, Rao and coauthor Robert I. Sutton explore how operational obstacles show up in the workplace and, more importantly, what we can do about them. Through what Rao calls “friction fixing,” leaders can “take out the bad friction to make the right things easy to do [and] put in good friction to make the wrong things harder [to do].”

    As Rao discusses with host Matt Abrahams on this episode of Think Fast, Talk Smart, leaders can eliminate bad friction through good communication. “Communication matters a lot,” he says. “The simple rule is, make sure a 10-year-old can understand it on the first try.”

    Episode Reference Links:

    Huggy Rao: Website Huggy’s Books: The Friction Project, Scaling Up Excellence, & Market Rebels Huggy’s Successful Communication Recipe - “Ah! Aha! Haha!” by Ramji Raghavan Ep.14: Be Better at Work: How to Communicate Better with Coworkers and Employees: Website / YouTube

    Connect:

    Email Questions & Feedback >>> [email protected] Transcripts >>> Think Fast Talk Smart WebsiteNewsletter Signup + English Language Learning >>> FasterSmarter.ioThink Fast Talk Smart >>> LinkedIn Page,  Instagram, YouTubeMatt Abrahams >>> LinkedInStanford GSB >>> LinkedIn & Twitter

    Chapters:

    (00:00:00) Introduction

    Host Matt Abrahams introduces guest, Huggy Rao, and his latest book on the importance of focusing on friction to become our best selves.

    (00:01:24) Scaling Mindsets and Communication

    Insights on scaling excellence and the critical role of simple communication in fostering the right mindset.

    (00:04:28) AstraZeneca: Scaling Simplification

    A case study on simplification efforts at AstraZeneca & the gift of time that they gave their employees.

    (00:08:49) Understanding Friction: Terrible and Wonderful

    The dual nature of friction, highlighting its role as both a hindrance and a catalyst for decision-making. 

    (00:11:05) Jargon Monoxide

    Complicated jargon’s impact on organizations, and the need for simplicity in communication.

    (00:13:03) The Art of Storytelling

    The benefits & goals of storytelling, creating moral elevation & emotional connection.

    (00:15:12) Job Titles and Accountability

    An experiment on the impact of personalized job titles on team performance and accountability in tech startups and the introduction of “good friction”.

    (00:17:57) The Final Three Questions

    Huggy shares his strategy for reducing friction in his life, a story about the communicator he most admires, Saul Alinsky, and his three ingredients for a successful communication recipe, Aah! Aha! Ha-Ha!

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  • “Simple language, forceful language, vivid language, and keeping it simple and direct,” says Professor Jeffrey Pfeffer, are all powerful tools to strengthen your communication.

    Host and Stanford Graduate School of Business lecturer Matt Abrahams interviews Pfeffer, the author many books, including Power: Why Some People Have It and Others Don't, about the verbal and nonverbal ways we can harness, or give away, our authority when we’re speaking to others. Pfeffer is also the host of the podcast Pfeffer on Power and teaches the Stanford GSB online course Discover the Paths to Power.

    Think Fast, Talk Smart is a podcast produced by Stanford Graduate School of Business. Each episode provides concrete, easy-to-implement tools and techniques to help you hone and enhance your communication skills.

    Episode Reference Links:

    Jeffrey Pfeffer's podcast: Pfeffer on PowerJeffrey Pfeffer's books: Dying for a Paycheck & Power: Why Some People Have It and Others Don'tStanford GSB Online Course: Discover the Paths to PowerEp 12, Deb Grunfeld: YouTube / WebsiteEp 44, Melissa Jones Briggs: YouTube / Website

    Connect:

    Email Questions & Feedback >>> [email protected] Transcripts >>> Think Fast Talk Smart WebsiteNewsletter Signup + English Language Learning >>> FasterSmarter.ioThink Fast Talk Smart >>> LinkedIn Page,  Instagram, YouTubeMatt Abrahams >>> LinkedInStanford GSB >>> LinkedIn & Twitter

    Chapters:

    (00:00:00) Introduction

    Matt Abrahams introduces the episode, highlighting the importance of power and presence in communication.

    (00:01:31) Defining Power and Status

    Jeffrey Pfeffer shares his definition of power and status, emphasizing their significance in achieving goals despite opposition.

    (00:02:45) Nonverbal & Verbal Behaviors to Communicate Power

    Specific behaviors that convey power, and those to avoid.

    (00:05:46) Emotion and Power

    Pfeffer explores the role of emotion in conveying power, highlighting the effectiveness of displaying strong emotions like anger and passion.

    (00:09:11) Virtual Communication

    Strategies for projecting competence and higher status in virtual communication are discussed, emphasizing the importance of appearance and framing on video calls.

    (00:10:55) Communicating Across Power Levels

    Jeffrey Pfeffer advises on crafting concise, powerful messages for communication with higher-status individuals, emphasizing the importance of directness and presentation in person.

    (00:12:06) Tailoring Messages with Flattery

    Pfeffer suggests beginning communications with flattery, highlighting its effectiveness in making the recipient more receptive to your message.

    (00:13:33) The Importance of ‘Warming Up’

    Why we should warm up physically and vocally before important communications.

    (00:16:33) The Final Three Questions

    Pfeffer shares his best communication advice in a concise slide title, the communicators he “admires”, and his three ingredients for a successful communication recipe.

    (00:19:20) Conclusion and Appreciation

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  • New York Times Opinion columnist David Brooks shares how to communicate so that others feel seen, heard, and understood.

    All too often, we communicate without really connecting. The key to building deep connections with others, says David Brooks, is to make them feel seen and heard.

    Brooks is a writer for the New York Times, the Atlantic, and the best-selling author of several books. In his latest, How to Know a Person: The Art of Seeing Others Deeply and Being Deeply Seen, he explores how vulnerability — both being vulnerable ourselves and creating space for others to be as well — is the key to fostering deeper connections at home, at work, and throughout our lives. “[People] need to be seen, heard, and understood,” he says. “If you hide yourself from the emotional intimacies of life, you're hiding yourself from life itself.”

    In this episode of Think Fast, Talk Smart, Brooks and host Matt Abrahams discuss the fundamentals of communicating with vulnerability and empathy, outlining the skills that anyone can learn and use to connect more deeply in their relationships.

    Episode Reference Links:

    Full list of David Brooks booksBryan StevensonGeorge OrwellC.S. Lewis Oprah Winfrey VideoEp 64, Carissa Carter: YouTube / WebsiteEp 101, Geoffrey Cohen: YouTube / Website

    Connect:

    Email Questions & Feedback >>> [email protected] Transcripts >>> Think Fast Talk Smart WebsiteNewsletter Signup + English Language Learning >>> FasterSmarter.ioThink Fast Talk Smart >>> LinkedIn Page,  Instagram, YouTubeMatt Abrahams >>> LinkedInStanford GSB >>> LinkedIn & Twitter

    Chapters:

    (00:00:00) Introduction

    (00:01:26) Personal Motivation

    David Brooks shares insights into his journey and the motivation behind his latest book.

    (00:04:01) Barriers to Connection

    Common barriers to connection including egotism, anxiety, worldview, and lack of questioning.

    (00:04:43) The Stages of Empathy

    David Brooks breaks down empathy into components such as mirroring, mentalizing, and caring, and recognizing your own emotion

    (00:07:40) Keys to Meaningful Conversation

    Attention as an on-off switch, loud listening, avoiding topping responses, embracing pauses, and making people authors

    (00:11:22) Understanding Illuminators and Diminishers

    Illuminators are those who make you feel seen and valued through curiosity and active listening and suggestions and suggestions on how to be a better illuminator and conversationalist.

    (00:14:01) How to Be a Better Public Speaker

    The importance of vulnerability, humor, and storytelling. 

    (00:16:25) Paradigmatic vs. Narrative Modes of Thinking

    Jerome Bruner's concept of paradigmatic for writing and convincing, Narrative mode for understanding a fellow human being. 

    (00:18:02) David Brooks' Journey

    Becoming a journalist, inspired by childhood reading and early experiences as a police reporter & admiration for Oprah Winfrey as an admirable listener.

    (00:19:52) Ingredients for Successful Communication

    David Brooks outlines his three essential ingredients for effective communication: depth of passion, vulnerability, and clarity. 

    (00:22:27) Closing

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  • Matt takes live questions from his worldwide audience.

    Join Matt Abrahams engaging with his international audience and answering questions that touch upon some of today's most pressing communication challenges. Matt offers advice on everything from the nuances of crafting clear, impactful questions and navigating emotional dynamics in group settings to maintaining control during presentations and delivering difficult news.

    Additionally, listeners are treated to innovative strategies for creating memorable introductions and managing disruptive behaviors in group discussions. This episode, taken from a Think Fast Talk Smart live event, offers practical tips and strategies; its a value add for anyone looking to enhance their communication skills in personal and professional contexts.

    Think Fast, Talk Smart is a podcast produced by Stanford Graduate School of Business.

    Episode Links:

    Cross Cultural Communication with Michele J Gelfand - Ep 67, What Is Normal? How Culture Affects Communication Styles - Website / YouTubeConstructive Feedback with with Kim Scott - Ep 105, Radical Candor: The Communication Shift That Can Transform Your Career - Website / YouTubePrevious Ask Me Anything Live Episode - Ep 78, Three Guiding Principles for Successful Communication - Website / YouTube

    Connect:

    Email Questions & Feedback >>> [email protected]

    Episode Transcripts >>> Think Fast Talk Smart Website

    Newsletter Signup + English Language Learning >>> FasterSmarter.io

    Think Fast Talk Smart >>> LinkedIn Page,  Instagram, YouTube

    Matt Abrahams >>> LinkedIn

    Stanford GSB >>> LinkedIn & Twitter

    Chapters:

    (00:00:00) Introduction and Overview of Part Two

    (00:01:11) Formulating Relevant Questions 

    Crafting relevant questions in high-pressure situations. Matt outlines a three-step process for developing concise questions that address the key issues, and provide the person answering with a hook. 

    (00:03:14) Managing Emotional Discussions 

    How to handle a group discussion that gets emotional reactions by acknowledging emotions and using paraphrasing to refocus the conversation.

    (00:05:32) Navigating An Audience Hijacking Your Presentation

    Set clear boundaries and expectations at the beginning of the presentation, along with effective paraphrasing.

    (00:08:25) Communication Structures for Delivering Difficult Messages 

    How to employ the "What, So What, Now What" or the “Comparison, Contrast, Conclusion” structures when giving difficult news, or feedback.

    (00:10:25) Effective Cross-Cultural Communication 

    When communicating effectively in a multinational company, Matt emphasizes empathy, repetition, and deep listening.

    (00:12:51) How to Get Creative With Our Introductions 

    Matt suggests starting with a provocative statement and then your name, in order to set an expectation for who we are and what's important to us. 

    (00:14:51) Handling a Difficult or Challenging Person in Groups 

    Matt recommends constructive feedback and the strategic use of paraphrasing to manage disruptions.

    (00:17:13) Conclusion

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  • Matt takes live questions from his worldwide audience and shares a lesson around concision, relevance, accessibly, and precision in messaging. In this "masterclass," he emphasizes the communicator's role as a translator who simplifies complex information for diverse audiences.

    Key takeaways include the careful use of analogies, considering cultural backgrounds and audience understanding, and providing techniques for chunking information into understandable segments. Additionally, the episode delves into the significance of structuring communication to achieve specific goals, highlighting Matt’s structure 'What? So What? Now What?. This episode is packed with practical advice and strategies for anyone looking to enhance their communication skills, whether in professional or personal contexts.

    Be sure to tune in to Part 2, the “Ask Me Anything” portion of this recorded event.

    Think Fast, Talk Smart is a podcast produced by Stanford Graduate School of Business.

    Connect:

    Episode Transcripts >>> Think Fast Talk Smart Website

    Newsletter Signup + English Language Learning >>> FasterSmarter.io

    Think Fast Talk Smart >>> LinkedIn Page,  Instagram, YouTube

    Matt Abrahams >>> LinkedIn

    Stanford GSB >>> LinkedIn & Twitter

    Chapters:

    (00:00:00) Introduction and Global Participation 

    Jenny & Matt introduce the live episode.

    (00:01:09) Challenges of Communication 

    Matt emphasizes the challenges in maintaining focus and clarity in a world filled with distractions and uses the iPod messaging as an example of focused communication.

    (00:02:46) Concision 

    Matt shares insights, examples, and practical techniques on using minimal words for maximum impact.

    (00:06:47) Relevance

    The importance of thinking about who our audience is, their needs, and how to use emotion, engagement, time-travelling phrases, and curiosity.

    (00:10:36) Accessibility 

    How do we make our content understandable to our audience? Matt explains that communicators are translators, and suggests techniques such as language, analogies, chunking, and providing diagrams

    (00:15:50) Precision

    Making sure we have a clear goal for our communication and the three components of a clear goal: information, emotion, and action.

    (00:17:20) The importance of Structure for Precision

    Exploring various structures for targeted communication, including insights from the Dummies book series, Matt’s favorite communication structure: 'What? So What? Now What?', and thinking about how we start and finish. 

    (00:21:38) Closing 

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  • If we want to generate better ideas, then we need to get people back to the office.

    In this bonus meetings mini-series episode, we feature an episode from the newest podcast from Stanford Graduate School of Business – If/Then: Business, Leadership, Society. In this conversation with senior editor Kevin Cool, Professor of Marketing and former TFTS guest Jonathan Levav details his study of remote work and creativity. “Pairs that worked face-to-face generated 15 to 20% more ideas than pairs that worked on Zoom,” Levav notes. What’s more, in-person brainstorming helped people consider a wider and more diverse range of possibilities. “Working on Zoom was a double penalty. Fewer ideas — and a narrower set of ideas.”

    Remote work may be the new normal in our post-pandemic world, but Levav cautions us from accepting the status quo — especially if we want to keep our creative edge. As this episode of If/Then explores, our best ideas could still lie ahead of us — if we can all get in the same room.

    If/Then is a podcast from the Stanford Graduate School of Business that examines research findings that can help us navigate the complex issues we face in business, leadership, and society. Each episode features an interview with a Stanford GSB faculty member.   

    Key Takeaways: 

    For hybrid work environments, managers should select “in-office” days based on tasks we perform better in person, such as collaboration and brainstorming.

    More flexible schedules for remote and office work allow employees to bring their best selves and perform better at their jobs.  

    More Resources: 

    Listen to Jonathan Levav’s Webby-Award winning TFTS episode: "88. Best of: Leading From Home – How to Create the Right Environment for Communication."

    Be sure to also listen to Part 1 and 2 of our Making Meeting Matter mini-series.

    Connect:

    Episode Transcripts >>> Think Fast Talk Smart Website

    Newsletter Signup + English Language Learning >>> FasterSmarter.io

    Think Fast Talk Smart >>> LinkedIn Page & Instagram

    Matt Abrahams >>> LinkedIn

    Stanford GSB >>> LinkedIn & Twitter

    Chapters:

    (00:00:00) Introduction 

    Matt introduces the If/Then podcast, and the episode featuring Jonathan Levav, previous Think Fast Talk Smart guest.

    (00:01:15) The Importance of In-Person Collaboration

    If/Then host Kevin Cool and Will Tracy, former executive producer of Succession, on his experiences with writers rooms and why virtual meetings don’t work in that context.

    (00:04:34) Introduction to Research on Virtual Collaboration

    Kevin introduces guest Jonathan Levav, his research on the effects of communicating on video on creative idea generation. Jonathan shares the conversation that was the genesis of the research.

    (00:05:32) Research findings

    The study methods used and results: face-to-face collaboration leads to 15-20% more creative ideas than collaboration over Zoom.

    (00:08:26) Understanding the Difference 

    People’s responses to the study and the impact of a physical experience

    (00:11:54) Evaluating Task Types for Meeting Type

    Determining different modalities for tasks in order to determine the best environment for that work, and why some work best in certain contexts.

    (00:16:42) Return to the Office

    As companies are encouraging employees to return to the office for a third day, the tension between employers and employees desires and how to add appeal as well as the lack of systemic study for data-base decision making.

    (00:20:30) Advice for Managers of Remote Workers

    The need for conscious change to adapt to the remote work experience, and Jonathan’s personal experience doing this teaching. 

    (00:24:31) Choice Architecture

    The importance of incentivizing workers to return to the office by making workplace culture recognize and meet employee needs.

    (00:29:43) Jonathan Levav's Career and Next Research Steps

    How Jonathan came to be in his field and his interest in studying networking and the way that virtual interactions shape relationship dynamics.

    (00:32:59) Conclusion

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  • Whether you’re giving a toast or presenting in a meeting, communication is critical to success in business and in life. Join Matt Abrahams, a lecturer of Strategic Communication at Stanford Graduate School of Business, as he sits down with experts in the field to discuss real-world communication challenges.

    How do I send my message clearly when put on the spot? How do I give better feedback? How can I easily convey complex information? How do I manage my reputation? How do I manage my anxiety in any speaking situation?  

    Think Fast, Talk Smart provides the tools, techniques, and best practices to help you communicate more effectively.

    Think Fast, Talk Smart: The Podcast is a production of Stanford Graduate School of Business. To find more podcasts from Stanford GSB, visit our website.

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  • How can we make meetings more effective? How can we keep people engaged and interested? Whether it’s in person or on Zoom, here are a few techniques you can use to make your gatherings more meaningful, productive, and memorable.

    Get practical tools and actionable insights to actually make meetings matter, as well as knowing when NOT to have a meeting. Join Matt Abrahams in a dynamic conversation with Elise Keith, an expert on effective meetings and communication. Elise explains the three main categories of meetings, and shares practical strategies for engaging participants, handling common meeting issues and maximizing productivity through techniques like parallel processing as well as other tools.

    Be sure to also listen to Part 1 of our meeting mini-series, as well as the following bonus Meeting's episode from the Stanford GSB's If/Then podcast.

    Connect:

    Episode Transcripts >>> Think Fast Talk Smart Website

    Newsletter Signup + English Language Learning >>> FasterSmarter.io

    Think Fast Talk Smart >>> LinkedIn Page & Instagram

    Matt Abrahams >>> LinkedIn

    Stanford GSB >>> LinkedIn & Twitter

    Chapters:

    (00:00) Introduction

    Part two of the making meetings meaningful series, with guest Elise Keith

    (02:01) Why & How to Have Meetings

    The power of meetings for focusing attention and how to know when to conduct them virtually or in person. 

    (03:56) Meeting Categories

    Elise breaks down the three major categories of meetings: Cadence, Catalyst, and Learn & Influence.

    (05:49) Purpose and Outcome

    The two things to know before scheduling a meeting: the purpose and outcomes - and how to communicate those practically

    (10:00) Knowing When Not to Meet

    When a meeting may not be the most effective way to achieve goals; ensuring respect for participants' time.

    (11:45) The Art of Facilitation

    Practical tips for engaging participants, and setting expectations for active participation. 

    (15:59) Tools for Creating Equity and & Cooperation

    Think-Pair-Share, or 1-2-All, and harnessing silence to encourage equal participation and leveling of the meeting.

    (17:19) Maximizing Meeting Productivity 

    Parallel processing for dividing work efficiently while keeping the team united. Plus, emphasizing achieving results in business meetings.

    (19:01) Meeting Best Practices

    A lightning-round of best practices for addressing common meeting challenges.

    (21:20) Final Questions

    A communicator most admired by Elise, as well as her three ingredients for successful communication

    (23:04) Conclusion

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  • Delve into why people hate meetings, explore what hinders their effectiveness, and how to change that. Karin Reed (Emmy Award winner) and Joe Allen (“The Meeting Doctor”) join Matt Abrahams in the first of a two-part series that aims to reshape your approach to meetings and help you make them effective and meaningful, whether in person, virtual or hybrid. 

    They shed light on the constraints hindering effective meetings, and explore strategies for optimizing meetings, emphasizing the importance of right-sizing meetings and focusing on realistic agendas. Karin provides valuable tips for enhancing on-air presence, focusing on aspects like eye contact, lighting, and framing, while Joe tackles the challenges of managing disruptive behaviors in virtual meetings. Don't miss this insightful exploration into the world of how to make meetings better.

    Connect:

    Episode Transcripts >>> Think Fast Talk Smart Website

    Newsletter Signup + English Language Learning >>> FasterSmarter.io

    Think Fast Talk Smart >>> LinkedIn Page & Instagram

    Matt Abrahams >>> LinkedIn

    Stanford GSB >>> LinkedIn & Twitter

    Chapters:

    (00:00) Introduction 

    Host Matt Abrahams sets the stage for the two-episode series on meaningful meetings and introduces guests Karin Reed and Joe Allen.

    (02:02) Why People Hate Meetings 

    Reasons behind the dislike for meetings, focusing on habits and societal norms and the issues that create ineffective meetings.

    (04:49) Participation Equity

    Strategies for validating all forms of participation, especially in virtual and hybrid meetings.

    (06:53) Meeting Structures and Strategically Ordering Topics

    How to strategically best order tasks for a meeting adapting to the team's readiness.

    (09:21) Best Practices for Virtual and Hybrid Meetings

    The importance of being & feeling seen and heard in virtual and hybrid meetings, strategies to work against proximity bias.

    (11:57) Virtual Presence Tips 

    Tips to have the best virtual presence from Karin, including eye contact, framing, lighting, and audio

    (16:35) How to Combat Counterproductive Meeting Behavior

    Joe explains different types of behaviours that derail meetings and how procedural communication can be used as a strategy to address them, and the possible outcomes of implementing this. 

    (20:45) Final Thoughts on Effective Meetings 

    Karin & Joe each give their one big tip for effective meetings, Karin shares the importances of injecting humanity and friendship, and Joe shares his communication mentor.

    (23:52) The ABCs of Communication 

    Karin Reed shares the first three ingredients for a successful communication recipe: Authenticity, Brevity, and Clarity.

    (25:01) Conclusion

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  • The information you receive is only as strong as the questions you ask.

    This week we revisit Matt's discussion with Debra Schifrin about how to craft inquiries that can lead to better communication outcomes. Questions are also instrumental in building relationships, Schifrin points out. “If you’re asking questions, you’re signaling to the other person that you value them. You’re taking time to listen to their answers.”

    For a full transcript of this conversation, visit our website.

    Chapters:

    (00:00) Introduction to the Episode and Guest

    (01:47) The Role and Importance of Questions

    Debra Schifrin discusses the various goals and purposes of asking questions, such as getting information and building relationships.

    (02:36) Questions in Building Relationships and Coaching

    Focus on how questions help in building relationships and their use in coaching and mentoring.

    (04:41) Negative Aspects of Question Asking

    Discussion about the darker goals of asking questions, like intimidation or avoiding responsibility.

    (06:57) The Impact of Tone in Question Asking

    Examination of how tone can significantly alter the perception and effectiveness of questions.

    (08:19) Creating Effective Questions

    Strategies for formulating good questions, emphasizing the use of value-related words.

    (10:10) Advice for Business Leaders on Question Asking

    Guidance for leaders on the importance of bravery in asking questions and being open to unexpected answers.

    (11:53) Context and Best Practices in Question Asking

    The relevance of context in questioning and best practices rooted in a mindset of curiosity.

    (15:25) Debra Schifrin's Secret Weapon in Questioning

    Schifrin's "killer last question" technique and its effectiveness in eliciting insightful responses.

    (17:19) Experiment with Different Questioning Styles

    An experiment demonstrating the impact of different ways of asking questions on the responses received.

    (19:00) Wrap-up and Final Questions

    Concluding part where Matt asks Debra Schifrin his three standard questions for all podcast guests, focusing on communication advice, admired communicators, and successful communication ingredients.

    Connect:

    Episode Transcripts >>> Think Fast Talk Smart Website

    Think Fast Talk Smart >>> LinkedIn Page & Instagram

    Matt Abrahams >>> LinkedIn

    Stanford GSB >>> LinkedIn & Twitter

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  • Research-backed techniques on how to beat nervousness in the moment.

    In this episode, Matt uses clips from experts from previous TFTS episodes to provide you with several communication anxiety management techniques to help you feel more comfortable and confident when you communicate. And as a guide to help us learn these techniques, he introduces the ABCs of anxiety management.

    (00:00) Intro: the ABC's of anxiety management

    (02:23) Christian Wheeler: Get comfortable being uncomfortable 

    (03:38) Kelly McGonigal: Anxiety is a sign you care

    (04:50) Andrew Huberman: Using breath to help quell anxiety 

    (06:51) Jeffrey Pfeffer: Warming up right before a communication challenge 

    (08:22) Alia Crum: Understanding that stress can be good for us

    (10:12) Alison Wood Brooks: Reframing our mindset

    (12:01) Anxiety Management Plan: Matt shares instructions on how to make your own “AMP” so you can communicate at your best.

    Connect with TFTS:

    Episode Transcripts >>> Think Fast Talk Smart WebsiteThink Fast Talk Smart >>> LinkedIn Page & InstagramMatt Abrahams >>> LinkedInStanford GSB >>> LinkedIn & Twitter

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  • We have to be vulnerable in order to build trust in our relationships. But as Jacob Morgan says, “Vulnerability for leaders is not the same as it is for everybody else.”

    In this episode of Think Fast, Talk Smart, Morgan shares with host Matt Abrahams his “vulnerable leadership equation” and how leaders can use it to transform the way they interact with others — creating more trust, unlocking people’s potential, and building successful teams and organizations.

    As Morgan explains, owning up to your mistakes and struggles might make you vulnerable, but it doesn’t necessarily make you a leader. In his latest book, Leading with Vulnerability: Unlock Your Greatest Superpower to Transform Yourself, Your Team, and Your Organization, Morgan lays out why leading with vulnerability goes a step further, saying, “Here's what I learned from the mistake that I made [and] steps that I'm going to put into place to make sure this doesn't happen again.”

    Connect:

    Jacob Morgan Book >>> Leading with VulnerabilityEpisode Transcripts >>> Think Fast Talk Smart WebsiteThink Fast Talk Smart >>> LinkedIn Page & InstagramMatt Abrahams >>> LinkedInStanford GSB >>> LinkedIn & Twitter

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  • Matt reflects on all the advice we've heard this season and shares the top 10 takeaways that he’s applying to his own communication:

    (00:00) Matt's Introduction

    (00:42) Jonah Berger: episode 80

    (02:09) Rachel Greenwald: episode 89

    (03:44) Dan Pink: episode 92

    (04:53) Vanessa Patrick: episode 95

    (06:55) Carmine Gallo: episode 103

    (07:43) Katie Milkman: episode 104

    (09:12) Kim Scott: episode 105

    (10:32) Francis Frei: episode 109

    (11:40) Patrick McGinnis: episode 113

    (13:14) Julian Treasure: episode 114

    Connect:

    Episode Transcripts >>> Think Fast Talk Smart WebsiteThink Fast Talk Smart >>> LinkedIn Page & InstagramMatt Abrahams >>> LinkedInStanford GSB >>> LinkedIn & Twitter

    See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

  • “Stress is natural,” says Alia Crum, an assistant professor of psychology at Stanford. “Stress is inevitable when you’re living a life that’s connected with things you care about. And learning how to embrace it, learning how to work with it is really what helps us thrive and grow and perform at our highest level.”

    In this episode of Think Fast, Talk Smart, lecturer and podcast host Matt Abrahams talks with Crum about her work as the principal investigator at the Stanford Mind & Body Lab, where she is studying how people can benefit from stress. “There’s a whole side of stress that shows that it can have enhancing qualities on our cognitive functioning, our physical health, and on how we behave and interact with others,” she says.

    For a full transcript of this conversation, visit our website.

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  • What comes to people’s minds when they think about you, and can you control it? Dorie Clark says you can — with the power of your personal brand.

    According to Clark, “You have brand equity in your own life.” Your personal brand or reputation, she says, “makes things either easier or harder for you” as you pursue your personal and professional goals. The key question, she says, is “What kind of reputation have you built up?” By taking stock of the personal brand you have, you can redefine it to align with who you are and where you want to go.

    In this episode of Think Fast, Talk Smart, Clark and host Matt Abrahams discuss the power of personal branding, being more strategic in how we communicate about ourselves, and how we can shape the narrative of our lives, personally and professionally.

    For a full transcript of this conversation, visit our website.

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  • Communication is about so much more than sharing words. As neuroscientist Shane O’Mara explains, communication is about sharing reality.

    According to O’Mara, “A conversation is where we create a shared reality together.” As a professor of experimental brain research at Trinity College Dublin, his research has focused on how human brains sync up through communication. “The essence is that we are creating a shared reality where we come to share the same states of emotion, the same states of memory, and we come to think about the future together in a new way.”

    On this episode of Think Fast, Talk Smart, O’Mara joins host Matt Abrahams to discuss how language, memory, and imagination play into communication, and how we can use active listening, turn-taking, and mentalizing to create a shared reality together.

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    For a full transcript of this conversation, visit our website.

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  • Even if you don’t think you’re a natural, anyone can become proficient at the art of small talk by utilizing the right tactics and behaviors. In this collaboration with Harvard Business Review, strategic communications lecturer Matt Abrahams shares his tips and techniques for cocktail party chit chat, networking small talk, and holiday dinner-table conversation.

    Watch the full video on HBR's YouTube channel.

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  • Why do we do what we do? What factors drive us? And how do things like competition with others help us achieve our goals?

    These are the questions most interesting to Szu-chi Huang, an associate professor of marketing with a specific interest in motivation. “Competition definitely increases motivation,” says Huang. “It makes attaining the goal more valuable.”

    In this episode of Think Fast, Talk Smart, Huang and host Matt Abrahams explore the intersection of human psychology, behavior, and goal attainment — and how communication connects them all.

    For a full transcript, visit this episode's webpage.

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  • We should all be audience-centric in communication. But, as Julian Treasure contests, we need to take it one step further. What is the listening I am speaking into?, he says, is the question every speaker should ask themselves over and over.

    "Every human being’s listening is unique ... we listen through a set of filters and those filters develop as we grow and mature in life and we have experiences. Knowing where the person is coming from, you'll be able to sense their listening."

    Treasure, an expert on speaking and sound, also offers advice on the breathing techniques that can transform one's speech. "If you want to speak powerfully, develop a breathing practice. And that can be as simple as conscious breathing, which is breathing in through the nose, out through the mouth."

    In this episode of Think Fast, Talk Smart, Treasure and host Matt Abrahams explore the power of breath; the four steps to show someone we're engaged and listening; and how by framing speech as a gift, we can better serve our audience. 

    Treasure is the author of Sound Business. His most recent book, How to be Heard: Secrets for Powerful Speaking and Listening, is based on his TED Talk. For a full transcript of this episode, visit our podcast webpage.

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    Julian Treasure on TED

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  • What if you had that job? What if you were with that person? What if there’s a better option out there? If you find yourself asking these questions, Patrick McGinnis invented the term for what you’re experiencing: FOMO.

    First coined by McGinnis in a piece published by the Harvard Business School newspaper, FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) describes the anxiety we feel when thinking that other people are having more fun and living more fulfilling lives than we are. As McGinnis says, “We are constantly comparing ourselves to other people. We are seeing the options that are out there. And then we're saying, what I'm doing right now isn't good enough. I am missing out on something.”

    Both in his book, Fear of Missing Out: Practical Decision-Making in a World of Overwhelming Choice, and in this episode of Think Fast, Talk Smart, McGinnis explains how conscious decision-making can help us feel more sure of our choices and experience less anxiety about the options we pass up.

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