Effective Communication Skills
Dr. Dalton Kehoe is Senior Scholar of Communications at York University in Toronto, where he earned his doctorate in social psychology. A teacher and organizational change practitioner for more than four decades, Professor Kehoe specializes in both interpersonal and organizational communications. In addition to being honored for his teaching-with the York University Teaching Award, recognition at the national level by both University Affairs in Canada and by The Chronicle of Higher Education in the United States, and being named one of the province's top 30 professors by Ontario's public educational network-he is a senior partner in a consulting firm that specializes in teaching organizations how to reengage their employees. As a public speaker, he presents seminars to organizations throughout North America on both the use of technology in teaching and on leadership and employee engagement. Professor Kehoe is an expert not only in face-to-face communications but in the use of modern technologies such as video streaming for effective teaching. His recent publications include Communication in Everyday Life (2nd Edition) and Communicating in Organizations: Complexity, Constraint and Creative Choice.
01: The Magic of Everyday Communication
An introduction to our "taken-for-granted" model of everyday talk reveals why you talk and the problems caused by underlying assumptions about the exchange. There are, as you learn, vital tools you can use to avoid these problems.
02: The Complex Layers of Face-to-Face Talk
Explore what really happens during face-to-face conversation by examining the conversational model developed by communication researchers. Discover that any two-person conversation really includes six people, and how different categories of "noise" dramatically affect the transmission of meaning.
03: The Social Context That Shapes Our Talk
How you understand the messages sent to you is shaped in large part by your culture and subcultures-the contexts in which you learned "normal" ways of seeing and hearing the world around you. Grasp the key dimensions along which cultures can be compared.
04: The Operations of the Cognitive Unconscious
Learn how a part of the brain unavailable to the conscious mind actually processes the vast majority of the information you take in, using a vast array of techniques to guide how you use that information, especially during face-to-face interactions.
05: The Conscious Mind in Perception
Take a key step toward talking more effectively by analyzing how you see things-the brain's "reality management" process of selecting, organizing, and interpreting incoming data. Grasp the pitfalls inherent in the brain's reliance on existing schemas and even stereotypes to make the process more efficient.
06: The Conscious Mind in Using Language
How do you interpret the information you take in, especially during conversation, when cognition must operate much more quickly? This lecture delves into the many pitfalls inherent in conversation, including the judgment tools we all use and the dangers in them revealed by Peter Senge's iconic "inference ladder."
07: The Conscious Mind and Emotion
As a society, we talk about feelings constantly. Yet at the individual level, our awareness of our feelings and ability to discuss them varies significantly. Learn how naming your feelings and describing them accurately to yourself and others is central to effective communication.
08: The Development of Our Sense of Self
How does your sense of self emerge and shape your relationships to others? What are the factors that differentiate one personality from another? Examine one model-the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator-and gain invaluable tips on how different personality types can communicate successfully with each other.
09: Self, Attachment, and Self-Esteem
Using both attachment theory and a self-awareness model called a Johari window, consider how self-esteem develops and how it can be characterized to reveal the emotions it embodies. Learn how we manage self-perceptions and self-presentations to preserve our self-esteem in daily interactions.
10: Protecting the Self in Face-to-Face Talk
Every conversation has the potential to either enhance your sense of self-worth or undermine it. Explore the techniques we all use to protect ourselves, with particular focus on the psychological defenses identified by Freud and the conversational model of Parent, Adult, and Child voices set forth by Eric Berne.
11: Conscious Self-Talk and Self-Management
You don't have to allow effective communication to be sabotaged by those automatic and often self-defeating defenses your mind puts in motion to "protect" you. This lecture offers practical techniques for creating positive internal dialogues and for being heard, understood, and accepted by others in difficult situations.
12: Challenges to Effective Communication
Professor Kehoe discusses several practical ways to turn what you have already learned into better communication. Learn the positive impact of concepts like mindfulness and appreciation, as well as how using meta-communication techniques can prevent a dangerous climb up the "inference ladder" during difficult situations.
13: Talking to Connect and Build Relationships
Begin your introduction to the professor's own model of human communication. In this lecture, learn the basics of "connect talk" at each of its stages, grasping the significance of procedural and ritual recognition talk before moving on to small talk and deeper levels of conversation.
14: Differences, Disagreement, and Control Talk
Understand what happens when "control talk"-the mode we use to influence or persuade-powers the conversation. Learn the difference between the light control that may well be useful in certain situations and the heavy control, driven by intense negative emotions, that rarely contributes to a positive outcome.
15: Commands, Accusations, and Blame
Plunge into the zone of escalation, where light control talk becomes competitive, tactics harden, and the battle of heavy control talk begins. Learn some useful techniques for managing your emotions and bringing your voice back to a level from which progress is possible for both parties.
16: Healing Relationships with Dialogue Talk
Gain an understanding of the only mode of talk that is not automatic. Instead, it requires choosing to be a mindful and emotionally generous meta-communicator, even in difficult situations, producing results that can be far more positive than those "achieved" through the win-lose, right-wrong, control talk model.
17: Focus on the Other-The Heart of Dialogue
What kinds of questions get people to talk openly? Learn how to ask these questions, and also gain listening and response techniques to keep them talking by showing your understanding of what they are trying to communicate.
18: Assertive Dialogue to Manage Disagreement
We all have to deal with difficult behavior, and doing so successfully requires being assertive, which is far different from being aggressive or using control talk. Here, gain valuable tools for asking for what you want with courage, calmness, and clarity.
19: Compassionate Confrontation
Sometimes a negative behavior persists despite repeated requests for change. When that happens, it may be time for "structured dialogue," a slowed-down and opened-up form of dialogue talk. Absorb the steps needed for a process that can be very effective, but demands time, focus, patience, energy, and self-management.
20: Communication, Gender, and Culture
Whether you are male or female affects how you communicate and use language. An exploration of what men and women actually mean when they speak-and why this is so-offers useful lessons on how best to hear and be heard by the opposite sex.
21: Talking Our Way to Lasting Relationships
Researchers have gained a knowledgeable grasp of why relationships develop and endure. Whether a relationship is one of friendship or romance, there are things you can do to not only enrich them, but make necessary repairs if they begin to either stagnate or fragment.
22: Leadership, Appreciation, and Productivity
The relationship between managers and employees is the bedrock of survival and success for all organizations. Learn how the quality of this relationship can be shaped by the quality of the communication between them-beginning with tools you can use as a manager.
23: Dialogue and Appreciation-Engaged Employees
Complete your understanding of the critical two-way interaction that determines a successful workplace as you look at the employee's role in building successful workplace communications. Grasp the techniques that make a practical difference in the success of both employee and employer.
24: Dialogue-Ethical Choices behind Our Talk
Listen to a summary of what you have learned, this time from the perspective of effective communication as a profoundly ethical process, and not merely one whose value lies in practicality. The goal is to speak in ways not only good for us, but for others, as well.