how to handle negative feedback

How to Deal With Negative Feedback

It happens to all of us: no matter how much positive feedback we receive, we can’t help but focus on (and obsess over) the negative — even if it represents just a sliver of the overall sentiment. As a speaker (and actor) I get direct feedback all the time, and initially it can be hard […]

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Lessons for Success

All You Need is Love: 9 Lessons for Success from Gilda Radner

There’s a documentary coming out this fall on the late Gilda Radner, one of the original cast members of Saturday Night Live. Called “Love, Gilda,” it’s getting a lot of buzz. In talking about what made her funny, Radner explained, “My biggest motivation has always been love.” That much is obvious. From the exuberance of her […]

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How to say no

How to Say No and Preserve Your Sanity

I have been asked several times by frazzled colleagues how I manage to avoid being overwhelmed with work. My answer is simple: I know how to say no. It goes back to my agency days. If you’re not careful, your time gets parceled out to so many clients and projects that none get the attention […]

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Communication rules women

Are the Communications Rules Different for Women?

It’s one of the most common questions I’m asked during my talks: are the rules different for women when it comes to communication? My answer is no. AND yes. It’s complicated, so I’ll explain. But first, a story. A Lesson from a Favorite Teacher Among the many classes I took at Second City’s training center was […]

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Communication skills

7 Ways to Bring the Love in Your Communications

On this Valentine’s Day I’m reminded of an important principle of improv comedy: come from a place of love. That’s also useful advice for our everyday communications (and for life in general, of course). So here are seven ways you can bring the love in order to become a more successful communicator. But first, an […]

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This One Word Makes You Sound Like a Jerk

We’re in the thick of Hollywood awards season, and with it come the acceptance speeches, which are sometimes inspiring, sometimes funny and sometimes downright pretentious. Which reminds me of a speech Madonna gave at the Golden Globes ceremony a few years ago that will forever live in my memory — all because of an ordinary, […]

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Surviving a Dysfunctional Family Christmas

10 Steps for Surviving a Dysfunctional Family Christmas

To butcher Tolstoy, all families are dysfunctional in their own way — especially around the holidays, when stress and expectations are sky high. Being a communicator by profession, I naturally believe most problems can be solved with communication (and that poor communication is the root of most problems). Not that I always practice what I preach — […]

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IABC Philly

A Full Week of Storytelling and Communication

Tomorrow morning I embark on a 36-hour marathon of travel and speaking and it couldn’t have come at a better time, as I believe I’m coming down with yet another Teddy-related virus. I can handle minor illness with a bit of Tylenol Cold and adrenalin, but a scratchy throat could prove to be a real […]

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How to be a better listener

How to Be a Better Listener in 7 Steps

Have you ever met anyone who admits they’re a bad listener? I haven’t. Most people seem to think they’re great listeners. But I haven’t found that to be true. And I should know — I’ve long been a bad listener. But I’m getting better at it, and I believe anyone can learn how to be a better […]

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How to Shoot a Selfie Video

How to Shoot a Selfie Video in 6 Easy Steps

In a camera-phone world, there is still a time and place for a professionally shot and edited video. But on occasion, a DIY approach is good enough — and even preferable. I’ve done it for professional purposes once — and, as with so many things, that makes me feel qualified to advise others. So here’s what I learned […]

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