Communication Skills

JS Tip 277: Focusing on the Other Person

Tips from Jefferson Smith Training and Consulting

** From the Communication Workshops: Focusing on the Other Person

We found this excellent article in the on-line edition of Inc. Magazine (http://jeffsmith.us3.list-manage.com/track/click?u=a36ff6c05a3a86ee5603a8af9&id=71a73e3faf&e=f5cb1b3d2d).

It’s titled “How Hugh Jackman Taught Me to Make a Lasting Impression” and written by Jeff Haden. We’ve abbreviated the article for space.

I was cutting through Central Park on my way to meet a friend at his restaurant. As I exited the park I stopped for a second to decide if I had time to walk the rest of the way or I should take a cab. A voice behind me said, “Lost?” I turned and said, “I don’t think so . . .” and then stopped. Holy [smoke]. Wolverinewas standing in front of me. He smiled, tilted his head, and raised his eyebrows in a nonverbal, “Need any help?” I told him I was deciding whether to get a cab. He asked where I was from (my southern accent gave me away), what business brought me to New York (my briefcase providing a clue), and if my family was along for the trip (he noticed my wedding ring). He could not have been nicer. I didn’t even get a chance to squeeze in a “Loved you in . . .” compliment. Finally he said, “Oh wait, I’m going to make you late. Where are you going?” I told him. “Oh, that place is great!” he said. “Let’s get you a taxi.” He took a couple steps out onto Central Park West and raised his arm and flagged a cab. He opened the back door, shook my hand, said, “Great talking to you, mate,” closed the door behind me and waved as I drove away. In three minutes, Hugh Jackman turned me into a fan for life—but he didn’t sell me. He didn’t glad-hand me. He just gave me his full attention. He just acted as if, for those three minutes, I was the most important person in the world—even though he didn’t know me and has certainly forgotten me.

Nice article. Beautiful approach to dealing with people. We need more of this.

What are your questions? Let us know. We love this stuff.

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