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Do Men And Women Communicate Differently At Work?

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Do men and women communicate differently at work?

By Madeleine Begun Kane @

Yes, according to proponents of the "men and women are from different galaxies" school of thought. Women are said to be self-effacing and apologetic. Men, on the other hand, are described as convincingly confident...even when they don't have the slightest idea what they're talking about.

Such generalizations can be dangerous, of course, and sometimes downright wrong. For instance I ... forgive me for saying a woman and I...uh...probably shouldn't brag about this, but I...on admittedly rare occasions...sometimes manage to appear...uh... completely self-assured and...well...I probably shouldn't waste your time on such a personal matter. In any event, I'm probably wrong.

Communication differences can be especially pronounced during business meetings. Especially those mind-numbingly "important" meetings where a gaggle of men and women perch and/or slouch around a conference table and discuss critical company issues like new products, marketing budgets, company picnics, and football scores. And play BuzzwordBingo in a laudable effort to remain semiconscious.

Unfortunately, how far you move up the corporate ladder often depends on your conference table talk. Why? Because your boss doesn't have time to check out your work. (S)he's much too busy sleeping through meetings.

So you can see how important it is to learn to communicate like a ma...I mean...boost your communication skills.

But help is at hand. Simply assess your abilities with this MCQ (Meeting Communication Quotient) Quiz:

1) When you have an important point to make you:

a) Jump in the instant somebody stops to breathe.

b) Politely wait until every male in the room has spoken ...including the CEO's cute three-year-old.

c) Wave a white flag in the air and hope someone notices.

2) When somebody uses an unfamiliar term you:

a) Figure if you don't understand it, it isn't important.



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