Thursday, March 11, 2010

Thursday Thinking—M Communication

Sometimes when the kids were little and would say something inappropriate or spout about something they knew nothing about, I would hiss, “You’re ignorance is showing” like it was a dangling, lacy slip or something.

Well. My ignorance is showing. I’ve been taking an M Comm class (I’m half way finished with the course) and I had no idea what the M stood for until I began writing this post. I thought it was Mass Communications—communicating with the masses. Nope. It’s Management Communications. I’m learning to communicate with the management.

Regardless of my ignorance, I have quite enjoyed the communication that the instructor (his first name is Crickett) sends in regards to my assignments. He sends me great encouragement and gives me 100’s. A’s. Sometimes he even says kind things like, “Well said. I never thought of that,” or “You write well.” And even when I nearly failed the grammar test, he didn’t hold it against me. Tomato, tomata. Comma, semi-colon. It’s all in the pronunciation.

Today I was to use a direct and an indirect approach to try and persuade someone. Here are my results as written to my instructor:


Tonight is our stake play, “Hello Dolly.” For the past two years, I’ve gone to the stake plays and have really enjoyed them. Calvin, my husband, has no desire to attend them. Last week I asked him directly, “Will you go to the play with me?”

He promptly said, “No.”

Today I asked, “How would you like to go on a date with me? We could go out to dinner . . . ”

Calvin pressed his lips together, raised his eyebrows—considering. I continued, “. . . and go to the play.”

He still said no.

Directly or indirectly, Calvin is not going to be persuaded to go to the stake play tonight.

Another assignment was regarding e-mail correspondence:

To: Cricket ­­­_________
Subject: Jane Payne’s Personal E-mail Analysis

I received many helpful guidelines for maintaining e-mail communication from this lesson. Sadly I found that I have been ignorant of many of them:

1. Read your e-mail messages at least once or twice a day.

I excel at this task. Not only do I check e-mail once or twice, I check it twenty or thirty times.

2. Delete all spam messages.

I can happily report that I do not look, like, or let linger spam messages.

3. Read and then delete personal messages. File them in another folder if you wish to keep them.

Currently my inbox has 3,151 messages, and that is after a recent heavy purging. I needed this memo.

4. When sending e-mails, be careful what you write. Remember they are not private.

It only took me one mistake. I replied to an e-mail asking my opinion on a muffin recipe. I replied that I’d found that most recipes coming from the woman who sent the recipe were extremely dry and I wouldn’t trust it without trying it. I didn’t realize that when I hit reply it included an e-mail to the muffin-baker. No one likes to be accused of dry muffins.

5. Read your e-mail out loud before you send it.

If they are formal e-mails I read them aloud repeatedly, yea ad nauseum . If they are e-mails to family they get what comes off the tip of my fingers.

6. Don’t become too lax in your writing.

Not guilty. I’ve never used j/k or lol. Ever. I won’t either, as I think they are absurd since I already know when to laugh at a joke. (Please don’t tell me you are the man that invented those abbreviations, no one likes to be accused of dry muffins or stupid abbreviations.)

7. For emails longer than a few lines, consider using OABC and HATS to enhance readability.

Consider this advice heeded. Thank you, it was timely.

A third assignment was to create sentences using a combination of reason and emotion strategies to get people to exercise. Here are my sentences:

(Cause and effect) If you begin developing an exercise program now, you can expect a healthier heart, bones, and lungs to aid you in your life-long pursuits.

(Pride) Imagine how great it feels to not be embarrassed at the beach in a swimming suit during summer vacation; exercise helps you maintain a healthy weight.

(Fear) Without regular physical activity you have a higher susceptibility to high blood pressure which may cause chronic diseases such as diabetes, osteoporosis, and some types of cancer.

(Fair play) Exercise takes a lot of effort, but its rewards include higher energy levels, better restful sleep, and are even known to improve your sex life.

(Bandwagon) Many families have discovered the benefits of strong interfamily connections after biking, canoeing, hiking, rock climbing, and swimming together, and that even takes into account the family fights while doing so.

(Ethics) You owe it to your body to take as good of care of it as it takes of you.

This closes my communication with the masses through The Neighbor’s Blog. Exercise, will you please?


Cali said...

I've laughed and laughed thinking about you not knowing what class you're taking (Mass Communication or Management Communication). It just goes to show you don't REALLY need to know your audiences. I also got a kick out of you JK & LOL. Are you guilty of using emoticons, though. You know :) is just as bad as LOL. Busted!

Deanna/Mimi said...

Enjoyed your posting. I no longer will use the "lol"..forgive me!! I will do better next time. lol

Couldn't resist!!!! are a joy to read and I am impressed with all you can do and continue to do.

Kathy said...

OK, I will, exercise.
But I chuckle as I write this comment. I want you to know that when I use LOL, it isn't to tell you too laugh. It is because I am laughing. (Tell me if that makes you laugh or if it fits into the dry muffin category!)

Kathy said...

I crack myself up!

Kathy said...

Seriously I love this post~

Neighbor Jane Payne said...

Oh dear. I'm really sorry if I offended anyone with my lol or j/k response. That wasn't my intent.


And the 12-year-old e-mail incident with the dry muffin lady? I lied (she takes great pride in her original recipes)and told her my sister sometimes makes dry muffins. And then told my sister that I said she made dry muffins so the lie wasn't quite so long and the comment not so hurtful. It was a lie nonetheless. What I should have done is just told my sister to use the recipe and slather the muffins in butter.

Okay. I think it's obvious why I needed this class. I have some communication improvement to do.

deidra said...

I do believe I spied a perfectly used semi-colon in this post!

I've taken a couple of classes without knowing exactly what the name was. I was close enough, but couldn't have nailed it down for sure. (Don't even get me started on class numbers!)

Heather @ Multiple Hats said...

Jane - FANTASTIC post! I love to learn new things, and to know what new things others are learning - you accomplished both! I've got some work to do on the e-mail front . . .

Marie said...

This post delighted me from the beginning to the end.

michelle said...

Oh, I love this! Especially the section on emails. And Cali's comment.