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Bob McMillanAn Opinion

By Bob McMillan
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How Do You Communicate Today?

One of my expressions, which I use all the time is, “The name of the game is to communicate.”

Let me explain. Without communications, nothing would happen at work, at home, or even when there is a time out. And today, there are so many ways to communicate. We have come a long way from smoke signals seen hill to hill, signal flags on ships, and Morse Code.

Today, we have many new approaches to communicating. From emails and texting to cell phones and from faxes to overnight mail, we can communicate faster and more often. But, there are challenges.

First, I find many people never respond to emails. I am not writing about an article or picture being sent to the “world.” I am referring to personal messages. For some reason, many people do not acknowledge even personal messages.

Another area relates to RSVPs for events, including weddings. I am told that 20 percent of us have to be called to see if we are attending a wedding reception. I cannot figure that out.

Another dimension of communication is knowing when to speak up and when to shut up. Some of us ramble on and on when, at times, we would be much better off to just zipper our lips.

Another area of communicating comes in the area of government and public policy. Why don’t people in government, who know something has gone wrong, just come out with an early report? The public is forgiving – even of government officials. What the public does not like is hiding important issues, hoping they will go away. That just does not happen. Wouldn’t they have done better by communicating early?

Another area where all of us could do a better job in communicating is on sidewalks, elevators, and even while shopping. What is wrong with a friendly smile instead of looking down at the floor? As we pass each other on the sidewalk, it does not hurt to say, “hello.” Even on elevators, a smile and a “good morning” wouldn’t be too bad. We either are bashful or afraid that our greeting might be shunned by a stranger.

By the way, I am very fortunate. Each week via this column I can communicate my views on just about any topic. When I am frustrated about something, I just pick up my pen, yellow legal pad and start writing. Thank you for reading each week.

Robert McMillan Website: www.bobmcmillan.net