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  • Heidi Kirby

Learning to Lead with People Skills

As mentioned in my previous post, the ability to communicate and collaborate successfully is the most important leadership competency instructional designers can possess.


This blog will provide several ways to improve your leadership communication skills, no matter where you are in your career journey.



5 Ways to Listen Better - Julian Treasure


Start sharpening your communication skills by practicing listening. Julian shares some very simple exercises to reduce noise and improve your listening skills in this brief Ted Talk from 2011.



185: Resonate: How to Use Vocal Intelligence & Body Language as a Leader - The Talent Grow Show with Halelly Azulay


If you haven't listened to this podcast, The Talent Grow Show with Halelly Azulay is a great place to learn from leaders on topics like communication and emotional intelligence. This is a rebroadcast of a previous episode, chosen because of the virtual/remote environments that many are currently working in. It covers the idea of vocal intelligence, the different challenges men and women face in leadership, and how to maintain trust while speaking. The podcast is approximately 30 minutes, but the website includes a number of other helpful resources you can dig into.



8 Ways Leaders Foster Collaboration - Carol Kinsey Goman


Carol Kinsey Goman is an expert on leadership presence and body language. This is just one of her Forbes articles on how to collaborate and communicate as a leader. It's a short read but filled with helpful tips. Check out her other articles!




5 Steps for Tackling Tough Conversations - Center for Creative Leadership


Although the Center for Creative Leadership offers a lot of paid premium coaching and training services for leaders, their free articles provide great insight for leaders. Many leaders fear difficult conversations with teammates, peers, management, and subordinates. This article offers a 5-step framework to help leaders prepare for those tough conversations.

Here's a bonus link for my friends who, like myself, may be looking for a new opportunity to shine because of COVID-19 layoffs:




3 Steps to Successfully Mock Interviewing Yourself (with Minimal Awkwardness) - Lily Zhang


Practice your leadership communication skills with a mock interview. Right now, interviews are being conducted virtually in record numbers. By recording yourself answering questions you can check the lighting, your outfit, the quality of your camera, and the vocal intelligence (see above) before you tackle the real interview. Also, you can use LinkedIn to find others looking for opportunities and send each other mock interview videos to get peer feedback!

Good luck on building your skills! Please feel free to share additional sources that you've come across in your experience in the comments!

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