We all love to be heard. We can feel understood, validated, and truly connected in the presence of a good listener. It is not easy to listen in our times of excessive stimuli, noisy environments, and shorter attention spans. But the benefit of human connection and deeper understanding makes it worth the effort. What makes […]
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About Jennifer Kammeyer
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Entries by Jennifer Kammeyer
This semester, 28 leaders from 17 different fields shared what it takes to be a good leader with students in my Leadership Communication course at San Francisco State University. After hearing the stories and wisdom of all these leaders, the students reflected upon what they learned and what they valued the most. Leaders interviewed for this […]
Ash Carter, former United States Secretary of Defense and current Director of Harvard Kennedy School Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, has a new book called Inside the Five-Sided Box that shares lessons from leading the largest institution in America – the Department of Defense. While the strategy is intriguing, I most appreciated the leadership communication […]
Excellent leaders are fantastic spokespeople. We see it all the time—leaders who seem to always have the right thing to say and deliver messages so naturally. While it takes practice, we all have the capacity to be great spokespeople for our organizations. Here are five tips to get you on your way with in-real-life (IRL) […]
The purpose of this meditation is to prepare for a difficult communication interaction – leading a meeting, tough conversation with a colleague, or presenting to important people in small or large audience.
“Like energy is the basic medium in physics, power is the basic medium of human relationships,” Dacher Keltner, PhD as heard on the WorkWell podcast. It is easy to be blind to power dynamics because of our democratic-society culture. We want to believe that all people are equal, but that delusion puts us at a […]
The purpose of this meditation is to recollect the calm and invigoration of paradise before speaking in public in order to increase confidence.
Compassion in leadership is an emerging concept in corporate management, brought to the forefront by LinkedIn in CEO, Jeff Weiner. But for most of us, the concept may be a bit fuzzy and theoretical. I was interested in learning more because I teach Leadership Communication at San Francisco State University. At the recent Compassion in […]
The purpose of this meditation is to increase the ease of stepping into somebody else’s shoes and taking their perspective to gain understanding.
“What were you thinking sending out that document without letting me review it first?” Judgmental, emotional, imprecise, and not actionable, this type of feedback is ineffective. “I see that the document was submitted without me seeing it. I need to review all material prior to submission to ensure consistency and accuracy. I understand you were […]
The purpose of this meditation is to gain the skills of equanimity and managing emotions during interpersonal conflicts.
Where attention goes, energy flows. That is the name of a meditation in my current rotation on Insight Timer. This concept applies to most things in life, including communication. When we are interacting with others, we have the choice of where we place our attention. In conversation we have the option of focusing on ourselves or on the other […]
The Wisdom 2.0 conference just celebrated its 10thyear, seven of which I have attended and come away from inspired. Listening to leaders in a wide range of fields who practice mindfulness for pursuing excellence is an awesome learning experience. This year, hot topics included social media as society’s mirror, reducing biases in the tech industry, therapeutic psychedelics, […]
Each of us has a unique worldview. It is human nature to form constructs and have predispositions as it helps us navigate the world, but the flip side of that coin is that our worldview can limit us. When we hold tight to our worldview, we automatically shut out valuable information that could be of benefit. After […]
All communication starts with an intention, whether we know it or not. Being aware and deliberately setting our intention improves our interactions with others. Imagine this: you walk into the office and your coworker stops you on the way to your desk to tell you a funny story about a client interaction. Instead of laughing, […]
A personal brand is the sum total of impressions that we make on other people. It is our image among the circle of people we wish to influence, be that our immediate team, our entire company, our industry, or an entire country. We create our brand through every single communication interaction. It is more than […]
In this month of giving thanks, I pause to consider all the wonderful people with whom I am lucky to encounter in my work. First, I acknowledge that I am among the small percentage of people in this world who get to do what they love for a living — super grateful for that. Mostly […]
In today’s highly stimulating world where we often spend the day fending off overflowing email inboxes and incessant smartphone notifications, the ability to focus is a critical skill. Good management of our own attention is particularly important for effective leadership communication. Research shows the value of our attention, especially for leaders, and yet, we often […]
Our ability to communicate well with others actually starts inside our own heads, with our ability to listen to ourselves. Thich Nhat Hanh, author of over 100 books including The Art of Communicating, points out that we can’t really engage adequately with others until we first communicate with ourselves well. In this book I found […]
We can better adapt our communication when we first manage our emotions. The common expression ‘I get so angry I can’t even see straight’ has literal validity; when we get emotional the prefrontal cortex of the brain ceases to guide us. There are three key steps to managing our emotions effectively: Bring awareness. Notice when […]
Leaders excel by being aware of self and others, and the situation at hand. We lead in a time of perpetual chaotic change, we drink from a fire hose of information, and we interact with people from around the globe with different perspectives, cultural norms, and communication styles. To achieve high performance, we need to […]
The jobs of the future require a skill set not held by people today, but communication will always be critical professional skill. As of late, we read and hear that through automation and artificial intelligence, the jobs we have today will be done by technology in the future. The response is the call for training, […]
If there is an inconsistency between body language and speech, research shows that the listener will believe the message conveyed through body language over that which is said. Body language is louder than words. We have all been in the situation where a friend tells us everything is fine, and we know darn well it […]
I saw brilliant women talk about leadership at Wisdom 2.0 beginning with the statement that both men and women need to incorporate both Agentic and Communal leadership to be effective. Forget the terms feminine and masculine and all the leadership characteristics we may associate with these terms and replace them with Agentic and Communal, which […]
When providing feedback, it’s all about the delivery. To achieve your end goal more often avoid the pronoun ‘you’ and avoiding generalizations when giving constructive criticism. Just think about how you felt the last time somebody said ‘You are always late for meetings’ or ‘You never do your share of the work’ – it triggers […]
“I really enjoyed every single exercise we did this course, it made me feel thankful, calm, and alert. A feeling I don’t normally feel prior to entering this class.” – Anonymous Leadership Communication Student “I struggled with it but it gave me good techniques to apply to my daily life and my stress management.” – […]
Most of us look at things from our own perspective. This makes total sense because we are with ourselves more than anyone else. But, it doesn’t make as much sense when we are striving for effective communication with others. When we communicate and interact with other people, our own thoughts are often very active and […]
Time feels irrelevant, brilliant ideas flow easily, and you have a deep sense of connection to others and the world at large – you are in a non-ordinary state of consciousness. In addition to the fabulous feeling, the benefits of these non-ordinary states are increased creativity and performance for a wide variety of pursuits – […]
Two budding leaders from Kulesa Faul Public Relations spoke to my Leadership Communication class at San Francisco State this week, offering advice to students interested in entering the profession. The interactive conversation was a good reminder of how effective communication plays into career advancement in addition to being essential for the art of public relations. […]
Attending Wisdom 2.0 for my sixth time, I was, as usual, impressed by the caliber of speakers, but this year I was more impressed by the attendees and the way in which they are implementing mindfulness in their work. I met people from all industries from all over. Hearing their stories gave me insight on […]
“If you take a step-by-step perspective, then you will not get discouraged in accomplishing something grandiose.” Matt Gamache-Asselin, Co-founder and CEO of ScriptDash, a modern pharmacy. Speaking to my Leadership Communication class at San Francisco State University, Matt shared advice about leading his start up ScriptDash. He said when they started the company they had […]
While we know conflict is part of life, it still can catch us by surprise and throw us off our ‘conscious communicator’ game. To stay present and bring our best selves forward when conflict arises we need to be knowledgeable and practice being present with discomfort. In terms of being knowledgeable, there is both understanding […]
Whether it is a project update to a team, a sales pitch, or a conference engagement, as business professionals we are often asked to speak with a presentation. Coaching on how to do this effectively is at the heart of my passion and work, which I share with others through workshops and 1:1 training. My […]
Happy New Year! We are all starting off 2016 with different resolutions, be that improved productivity, reduced stress, healthier body, or more enjoyment. The research is now overwhelming that core to our wellbeing, and the basis for achieving our resolutions, is mindfulness. Mindfulness is the ability to be present moment-to-moment and simply notice new things. […]
November is the month in which we celebrate thanks. Thanks for our family, friends, and colleagues. While we each count our blessings for different things, much of what we are grateful for is the people in our lives. How do we express that gratitude? The obvious answer is by telling people, the less obvious answer […]
The interesting thing about the Halloween is that it takes a light view of the human fear of death with people dressing up as ghosts and goblins. The origination of the Day of the Dead also takes a lighter view on the subject with the concept that death is actually a part of life and […]