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Nick Morgan - Have We Learned Anything About Communication in Today's Virtual World?

Have you ever attempted a joke online and it not only fell flat, but it also offended the person on the other end? Communication in a virtual world is tricky and can be filled with landmines of miscommunication. Dr. Nick Morgan is one of the most respected coaches for speakers. He is an expert communicator and is here to explain the five basic problems of virtual communication and how to overcome them.

Dr. Nick Morgan is a passionate speaker, theorist, and coach. He founded the Public Words consulting firm which helps people convey their ideas with passion and the use of storytelling. He’s coached people to give Congressional testimony, to appear in the media, and to deliver unforgettable TED talks. He’s written for Fortune 50 CEOs and presidents and has spoken and moderated venues around the world.

His book Can You Hear Me?: How to Connect with People in a Virtual World was published in 2018, and it’s more relevant now than ever. It’s really a communication manual for remote and virtual work. We talk about problems like lack of empathy, lack of feedback, lack of control, lack of emotion, and lack of connection and commitment. Nick also shares how to solve these issues and convey emotion virtually.

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Nick Morgan thank you so much for being here!

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[02:48] A happy surprise for Nick has been increased coaching clients.

[05:51] It's challenging to make your intent clear in a virtual world. People are hardwired to get cues about a person's intent from their senses.

[08:23] We've been in a virtual world since the beginning of email and texting. It starts with written virtual communication and then moves on to audio and video.

[10:45] Can virtual communication be more personal?

[13:34] When people really take the time to express what they want to say in written media, it can be more intimate.

[16:14] Being a live speaking coach has magnified the aspects of virtual communication for Nick.

[18:17] The five basic problems of virtual communication. Number one is the lack of feedback.

[18:45] In face to face interaction we get instant feedback from the five senses. Our minds assume the worst without feedback.

[22:30] Number two is the lack of empathy. We lose empathy because of the negative assumption. There is a lack of clarity of intent in virtual communication.

[25:24] We may need to reflect and actually ask the person how what we said made them feel. This will often clear up a misunderstanding.

[26:57] Lack of control. Things are remembered forever in the online world.

[30:14] Lack of emotion. The audio of our voice is compressed online. Emotions are carried in the overtones, not the basic pitch.

[35:00] Get clear about your intent. Use emojis to put body language back in. Ramp up the emotion and energy in audio. Use your hands during video.

[39:55] Lack of connection and commitment. If the online world isn't working, we move on. In person, we take stock of the human being.

[44:42] Proprioception awareness of space of the body. This is thrown off online. This is why Zoom calls can be stressful.

[49:55] Nick shares his communication skills in the Rapid Round.

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Host Jeffrey Shaw is a Small Business Consultant, Brand Management Consultant, Business Coach for Entrepreneurs, Keynote Speaker, TEDx Speaker and author of LINGO and The Self Employed Life (May 2021). Supporting self-employed business owners with business and personal development strategies they need to create sustainable success.


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