I understand that using profanity can make a person appear to be more real and relatable to those that speak that way. The problem is it can also alienate and put others off and make the person come across as a bully or tyrant. Effective communication isn’t limited only to eliminating profanity. This also relates to any profession or group that create their own insider language to communicate and set themselves apart. Not only is this confusing, it also makes those who aren’t part of the group feel like outsiders.
How low can we go? When we drop to the lowest and most basic level of communication, where do we go from there? Do we take a shovel and start digging to find a new low?
What if we raise the bar and put in some effort to communicate deferentially and in a manner, that is not offensive to others? Its about showing respect to others and not making them uncomfortable or even embarrassed to be in the presence of an insensitive communicator. At another level it shows contempt for people when someone is determined to express themselves in a way that shows no regard for others.
I’m all for being real. There are times when being direct or even blunt can have a positive impact and is just what a leader needs to do to get things moving or let people know what they think.
However, what if we strive to connect with our audience, customers and colleagues in a way that shows we understand them and share their hopes, aspirations and goals as well as their pain, concerns, frustrations? Rather than using profanity, lets provide people with alternatives, options and even hope by communicating a way forward using respectful and inspiring language.
Soliciting input and perspective about other people’s situations by interviewing, having meaningful conversations and story telling are all ways to demonstrate empathy and show leadership in an intelligent and rational manner. Its also a great way to build trust.
Click here to watch my recent vlog on this topic: Drop the F Bomb.