Getting to Yes, And

Erica Dhawan: Digital Body Language


Erica Dhawan

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Kelly connects with CEO Erica Dhawan, who offers amazing insights into the many ways we need to alter the way we communicate through digital spaces.

This book confronts a reckoning of sorts with the many ways we miscommunicate through our digital worlds today.

“We are in a digital communication crisis. I'll never forget an example from one of my clients. He sent a text message to his boss saying, do you want to speak Wednesday or Thursday and his boss responded yes.  Now of course we've all been in situations like this before, but in a recent study I ran the average employees wasting four hours per week on poor, unclear or confusing digital communications. Think about the impact that this is having on our one well being in our lives.”

And one of the problems is that when we’re communicating in person, there are all sorts of non-verbal ways in which we are expressing ourselves.

“Yes, absolutely I think that with synchronous communication face to face, we were able to read eye contact and lean in and smile.  And it gives us cues of trusting connection and an additional world when we send an email we have no idea if someone's on the verge of tears or excited to read it.”

Talk to us about how something seemingly benign, like punctuation, can lead to miscommunication.

“Let's start with a couple of examples. Imagine a boss sends a quick text message and all caps text message saying we need to talk with three exclamation points at the end. For some individuals that text from a boss can feel like shouting. For others it can feel like excitement and for others it can feel like urgency, this is urgent, we need to talk right now. And, and so you can even hear in my voice that it can mean different things, but when in the written word punctuation can be misread.”

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