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Gordon Robb

Great post. I couldn't agree more. 'nuff said!

David Zinger

Steve: As I was pondering your post and reflecting upon the current zeitgeist in work and communication I was thinking, or at least wondering, if we may be using too many, and by that I mean an excess of words to communicate a simple statement or request, of course this could be a mistaken notion generated by an overdoes of introspection and reflection in how the back and forth talk (communication) between people sometimes obscures or obfuscates from the impact of the message, and reminds me of the time...


Appreciate brevity, thanks Steve!

Steve Roesler

Got it, Gordon!

Steve Roesler

Thanks for the living examples, David. Paragraph #1 reflects what we have to contend with from those who confuse verbosity with clarity.

Well done!

London Roofer

I just sent this post to a bunch of my friends as I agree with most of what you’re saying here and the way you’ve presented it is awesome.


Steve: while I agree with you it's also worth bearing in mind that any communication has two primary components, the transmitter (person speaking) and the receiver (person listening).
When you transmit to more than one person (the receivers) the fewer words you use the less likely it becomes that they will interpret you slightly differently. In big group presentations or large meetings this is a real challenge. No matter how hard you try there will always be slightly conflicting views of what you meant.

So I agree: keep it short, be accurate, brief and to the point.


Yes! We need more of this in business communication. Clear, concise, to the point.


Superb! (Enough said for a brilliant post.)


I personally am more of a to the point person, but I'm finding more and more as my career evolves, that people crave the bullshit. Perhaps it's my field, but the more flowery language I use, the better it's received. I sort of hate it, but I'm glad i finally figured out that my personal communication style is less than welcome in businessland.

Peter Phelps

As a therapist working in the City of London, I find directness a very useful tool. I see it as my duty to cut through the crap and the "business-speak", and get to the emotional roots of the client's problem. One of my favourite strategies is to ask the question; "Do you want me to be nice, or to be honest?" In ten years, only one client has taken the "Nice" option. She knew what the honest answer was anyway.

Chris Witt

I think it takes both courage and skill to speak briefly. Courage to let your thoughts stand on their own. And skill to know how to cut through the blather that has become so commonplace.

Thanks for your insight.


Great post, I think people assume that if you say a lot it must be important, I have found the opposite. Those that can speak clearly what they want to say often are experts on the subject.

Steve Roesler


Your thought large groups and the impact of conciseness to avoid confusion really rings true. Thanks for tht one (Readers: Consider Chris' point when preparing your next large-group communication.

Steve Roesler

HI, Kat

Well, that's a sad commentary on the state of business communication, and the need for ten big words when two small ones will suffice drives me nuts. At he same time, knowinng one's audience is key to being successful. So, as painful as it may be, if success is the objective--and it is--perhaps it's a small, if not annoying, price to pay.

Steve Roesler


What a powerful pair of questions. Those who are coaching or in the helping professions should adapt those as part of their regular repertoire.

Steve Roesler


As a speaking coach, you no doubt are in the position to regularly help with the development of both of those qualities. I've always attributed conciseness to clarity of thought on the speaker's part--and am always grateful for it!

Steve Roesler

Sean, I think you are dead-on with your observation of the "paradox of less" and its relationship to genuine expertise.

Office partitions

Nice post Steve, I find it amazing how even in business people try to beat around the bush when that could potentially affect the company's profatabilty. I prefer people that are straight talking and say it how it is.

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