Category Archives: Communications

Regarding the colon: Stop abusing this handy punctuation mark

The colon is a versatile punctuation mark. Here are its three primary functions, followed by a few other uses:

1. Definition or expansion

“But here’s the interesting thing: He hadn’t ever been there before.”

Note the capitalization of the first word after the colon. All usage guides agree that in a sentence like “I want you to tell me one thing: the truth,” the first word should be lowercase because it begins a phrase, not a complete sentence.

But handbooks are divided over whether to capitalize complete sentences.

New general secretary at the Association of Higher and Civil Public Servants

Ciaran Rohan has been appointed as general secretary of the Association of Higher and Civil Public Servants (AHCPS).
Business and Leadership – Leadership

Is PR harder than social media?

I recently spoke at the FutureComms14 conference, and one of my remarks during the “Anatomy of the Modern Communicator” sparked quite a bit of feedback both online and off.

While talking about recruiting, I said that I’d always prefer to recruit a PR person because it was easier to teach a PR person social media than it was to teach a social media person PR.

Some people nodded in vociferous agreement, while others shook their heads and tweeted in dismay.

Irish Hospice Foundation announces pilot scheme to allow people plan for end of life digitally

The Irish Hospice Foundation (IHF) has launched a pilot scheme to allow people plan for end of life digitally.
Business and Leadership – Leadership

National Speakers Association’s name change raises hackles

What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet. That is, unless you are a member of the National Speakers Association (NSA).

The NSA annual convention this month in San Diego culminated with an announcement that took most members by surprise. The association, which has been called the National Speakers Association since its founding nearly a half-century ago, unveiled a new name and logo consisting of a single word: Platform.

The rebranding was intended to help people unfamiliar with NSA that this association (the National Speakers Association) is not that federal agency (National Security Agency), despite their common acronym. The association is global now, not just national. People who are not professional speakers join and benefit from the association. As is said in the association’s video, “It was time to step up and embrace the new world.”

A new name? A fresh look for a tired brand? What’s not to like about that? Change is good, right?

Medical groups’ reaction to appointment of new Health Minister

President of the Irish Medical Organisation (IMO) Professor Trevor Duffy has called on the new Minister for Health Leo Varadkar to seize the opportunity to work with doctors on delivering a health service which is patient focussed, evidence-based and properly resourced.
Business and Leadership – Leadership

Stop making these 15 body language mistakes

Until you get to know someone, your brain relies on snap judgments to categorize him, predict what he will do and anticipate how you should react.

You may have heard that a person only has a few seconds to make a first impression, but the truth is your brain makes up its mind about a person (so to speak) within milliseconds of meeting him.

According to research by a Princeton University psychologist, this is an evolutionary survival mechanism. Based on the information it has (how you look), your brain decides whether you are trustworthy, threatening, competent or likable, among other traits.

One way we can hack this split-second judgment is to be aware of our body language—especially in important situations. Whether you’re applying for a job, asking for a raise or meeting a new client, being mindful of our body language can influence others’ perceptions of us, as well as outcomes.