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Wally Bock

Steve, this is a wonderfully helpful post. Those universals provide one anchor for understanding a person's non-verbal communication. Another anchor is there baseline. Effective interrogators observe a subject to establish their baseline behavior. That's how you act in common situations like telling the truth, or when you're comfortable. Once you know that, you can probe more deeply for meaning when you observe a variation from the baseline.

Mary Jo Asmus

Steve, thanks for this post! I would think that many in the business/corporate world (and a few executive coaches) would find this information most helpful as our businesses become increasing diverse and global.

Kevin W. Grossman

Well, I just passed out, but my Dad was a detective for many years before retiring and understood how to use this in his work. I'll keep the cheat sheet handy.

Frode H

Hi Steve.
I have been reading this blog post over and over again. I have been returning whenever I "read" a feeling in someone.
"Don't: Try to be magically clever and tell them you know how they feel. The last time you did that with your spouse or significant other, how'd that work for you?" - When it comes to dealing with feeling with my wife, I learned the magic trick from the TV-series: two and a half men; Whenever there is someone talking about their trouble, just nod and say: "I understand" - It do wonders :) (But be careful, after to many repetitions without paying attention, you will be busted..)

Have a great weekend.

Steve Roesler


I suppose that life--and managerial life--involves a lot of effective detective work. There is enough solid info out there to help anyone and everyone who wants to become more effective at picking up accurate cues during conversations.

Readers: Note Wally's mention of finding a "baseline." When you establish that, it's a lot easier to recognize when something is different.

Steve Roesler

Mary Jo

You raise another point worth addressing in the future: the global issue. It's easy to dismiss a gesture as being "cultural" and then discount it. Not so. These cross borders and those doing business globally and/or with folks of various nationalities would be wise to create a cheat sheet and start using it.

Steve Roesler


No doubt your dad could have written the post and added some fascinating real-life stories!

Steve Roesler


I understand:-)

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