I’ve had many great mentors, colleagues, managers and friends over the years and many of them have given me great advice and shared their sage wisdom. Please note those all categories aren’t mutually exclusive.

First Be Honest and Be Kind

If you’re always honest you do not have to worry about tracking what you said to whom and getting caught in a lie. Being honest though does not excuse being cruel, yes there are often hard truths but they can delivered with kindness. Which dovetails nicely into my next points.

Think About What You Say

Before you talk think, “Will this add to the conversation?” If not skip it, no one likes meetings to go long because people feel the need to talk to show they are participating, no one likes people who say things to try make themselves look smart, it’s usually pretty clear and those people quickly lose respect and credibility. If you’re doing this 10 Tricks to Appear Smart in Meetings for the sake of everyone please stop.

Think About How You Say It

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou

When you need someone to do something for you ask don’t demand it especially when you’re their manager.

“Login to the server and update the database.”


“Would you please login into the server and update the database.”

Goes a lot further for people feeling valued, it also helps you as a manager because your team member now feels empowered to share information such as “I’m working on getting the latest security patches installed does this take priority.”