November 2010 Newsletter
Smart Talk
Who is Audrey?

Media Blitz

There are No Apps for “APPropriate” Communication Behavior
for your iPhone

At work (and outside of work), we don’t always say and do the right thing; sometimes words or thoughts leap out of our mouths that we regret! A couple of weeks ago I received the email below. I made a few notes which I would like to share. 

“…I listened to your 4-CD series a couple of years ago and found them very helpful, especially the "The Art of Conscious Communication: A Talent for a Technical Age" CD.  I don't know if you give advice, but if you do, I have a question related to a work situation.  I work in an administrative job for lobbyists.  Each Monday we have a meeting and the Director goes around the table and asks each person what they did over the weekend.  He does not ask, generally, if anyone did anything exciting; he asks each person individually, going around the table, what they did that weekend. 

 I have some family problems I've been dealing with and I'm also trying to pay off some debt, so I'd rather not report in front of the group what I do each weekend.  Also, the lobbyists make a lot more money than I do and they say things that are more exciting than what I do. Even if I wasn't dealing with these other problems, I would be uncomfortable having to answer this question each Monday.  Some of the other people's non-verbal reactions seem to say that they, too, are slightly uncomfortable answering this question every week in front of the group.  I've been tempted to ask why the whole group needs to know what I do each weekend or to say, “Sorry, but I'm a private person,” or something like that.  However, I am lowest on the totem pole, and I know it's going to come off as me challenging him in some way.”
 Can you offer any thoughts?

In this situation, my concern is the abuse of position from a person, the director, who is in a “legitimate power” position. Just because he is the director, does not give him a license to request disclosure of what his staff has done over the weekend and away from the workplace. I believe most people are trying to do the right thing, the director may have perceived this as a way for the group to bond and connect. Unfortunately the “intent” has an awful “impact.” There are many other ways for a group to connect and build cohesiveness without making things “personal.”

1. Asking what people have done over the weekend is private and personal. It borders on prying.

2. I can’t help but think it must become a competitive event: “Let’s see who has done the most interesting thing this weekend.”  Refrain from being “competitive” and going for the WOW factor.

3. You can do nothing and just offer something benign like, “I read a great novel this weekend.”

4. You could approach your director and share your discomfort. I would not recommend this approach. He may get defensive and he is in a power position.

5. Good for you noticing the nonverbal cues of others. I am certain other people feel uncomfortable having to conduct a “share and tell” every Monday.

6. Your personal problems are not something you want to share with the group and I don’t believe that is the intent. You are right to keep them to yourself.

7. Do not ask why the group needs to know what you have done over the weekend. The situation is awkward already and you do not need to add to it. Sometimes a high emotional intelligence requires saying nothing.

Audrey Nelson PhD. is an international trainer, key-note speaker ,consultant and author who works with organizations to increase their productivity and profitability through winning communication strategies.

You can reach Audrey at
or at 303.448.1800 O -  303-448-1801 Fax - 303.448.1802 Cell

Coming soon

arrowAudrey was recently interview by Glamour Magazine regarding how men and women can communicate about money issues from dating to marriage. - Look for her in March 2011 issue.

arrowDenver Tech Center Colorado Business Women
Wednesday March 9, 2011 from 11 am to 1 pm
Code switching: How to talk so Men will Listen - Maggiano’s DTC

arrowJanuary 20, 2011 Noon-1pm
Invent Your future Webinar will feature Code Switching: How to Talk so Men will Listen
The webinar, presenters, and book will be advertised on the IYF website
 95% corporate women, mid to upper-level management, technical and non-technical, some individual contributors, some entrepreneurs. Attendees come from a variety of industries, with the majority employed by our corporate partners: Apple, Intel, Hewlett-Packard, Rambus, Symantec, Northrop Grumman, and Intuit.

Have you checked out Audrey’s blog on

Did you know that Audrey was invited by the editors at Psychology Today to participate as a gender communication expert on the Psychology Today blog . Check it out!
Current Article
Gendered Gestures

In a past Psychology Today article, I make the argument that the division between large and small, aggressive and condensing applies to how we take up space and mark territory.  These themes also hold true to male and female gestures. .  Read More

Check out Audrey's website for
and more

Did you miss one of the
Smart Talk Columns?

Browse the archives of Audrey’s 2006 to date
Smart Talk Columns on her web!
Simply visit
and click on “Newsletters.”

Audrey Goes to
Korea for Gender Consultation

Click here for complete story and pictures

aAudrey was asked by the State Department to be a guest speaker and consultant for the US Embassy in Seoul, South Korea. She addressed a variety of groups including the Korean Supreme Court, The National Assembly, Korean media and a variety of women advocacy groups.

Dr. Audrey Nelson addressed how enhancing inclusion through critical gender relationships and cultural awareness can leverage South Korea’s female talent pool.  An exploration of the difference between simply recognizing male-female diversity and leading with a full understanding of how inclusion can benefit business will be the focus. A fuller understanding of workplace dynamics that undermine the full participation of women and a deeper awareness of how differently men and women communicate is necessary in order to prevent these gender differences from leading to resentment, decreased productivity and workplace stress.

arrowInterviewed by AOL on Code Switching: How to Talk so Men will Listen by Aaron Crowe at (10/30/10) -
Audrey has been asked to be the guest expert on communication and Code switching bi-monthly for
FOX Denver KWGN.

arrowAudrey was interviewed on the Everyday 10 am Talk Show - KDVR/KWGN-TV - Channel 2
"Dating Etiquette" 10/15/2010) - KWGN-TV, Denver
arrow Audrey was interviewed on the Everyday 10 am Talk Show - KDVR/KWGN-TV - Channel 2
"How to Deal with People You Hate" (9/21/2010)
- KWGN-TV, Denver

arrowCode Switching gets in the Top Selling Women’s Magazine in US.  See Cosmopolitan magazine's September 2010 issue and Audrey "Read His (Sexy) Lips" p. 75. - On stands now!-

arrowAudrey conducted an interview on Code switching 9 am to 10 am (9/24/2010) - Seed to Sky Radio, "Growing Businesses Small to Tall"

It's here!

Code Switching: How to Talk so Men will Listen
Claire Brown Ph.D. and Audrey Nelson Ph.D.
Penguin Group-Alpha Books
ISBN 978-1-59257-926-6

Code Switching: How to Talk so Men will Listen is a hands-on tool for everyday use at the office. It is a practical resource with how-to steps to help businesswomen conquer the communication nuances between men and women in the workplace. This book explores the gender impact on business talk. It teaches using true stories and case studies, while providing valuable “code-switching” tips to help women gain and strengthen credibility and make a greater impact on the job

Code Switching:
How to Talk so
Men will Listen -
book trailer

Click here to view
What People are saying about Audrey

Hi Audrey,

All of us liked your seminar last Friday. It really helped me in the work I am doing as a psychologist with the Stanford EAP and my private practice.
Thank you again for the wonderful seminar.
John H. O'Riordan []

Boulder County
Power of Positive Coaching

  • This course is providing excellent information. I like the high level of interaction.
  • Very informative, useful and powerful.
  • Great information! I am a supervisor and this is useful. I appreciate the book suggestions for future reading. This course makes you think.
"Audrey's Top 4 CD Communication Hits"