Kerry Patterson 2

Communication is an art and science. Some people are great communicators, while others struggle to talk to anyone. Jason Hartman invites Kerry Patterson, co-author of Crucial Conversations, to talk about some of the basics of interpersonal communication.

While researching this subject, the problems were pretty obvious – power struggles, strong emotions and differing opinions. The solutions were less obvious. Kerry talks about listening and verbal skills, where often what happens is people avoid a crucial conversation or handle a conversation badly, suffering the consequences either way.

The solutions begin with having an open mind and putting persuasion aside, and listen, even when others overreact or withdraw. Kerry discusses high-stakes confrontations and conversations in the business setting and in the family setting. He stresses it is very important not to tell yourself an ugly story about why someone did or didn’t do something that upset or disappointed you, and to realize you don’t know the facts. Actions themselves are neutral. Focus on the facts, not a conclusion.

Kerry Patterson is the four-time New York Times best-selling co-author of Crucial Conversations, Crucial Confrontations, Influencer, and Change Anything. For more than 25 years, he has served as an expert in organizational behavior, interpersonal communication and corporate training.

Patterson is also the co-founder of VitalSmarts, an innovator in corporate training and organizational performance. VitalSmarts has consulted with more than 300 of the Fortune 500 companies, has been listed by Inc. magazine as one of the fastest-growing companies in America for eight consecutive years, and trained more than 800,000 people worldwide. More can be found at www.vitalsmarts.com.

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