• THE AIM OF ‘LISTENING’ is “to ascertain what another person is trying to achieve – to identify, select & interpret the key words that turn information into intelligence, which is crucial to effective communication.” The pandemic lockdowns have dramatically altered the nature of both personal & business communication from in-person to phone or online, which mostly precludes ‘reading’ facial expression and/or body language, increases distractions, and makes listening more difficult. A few tips for effectiveness: (1) Keep quiet and focus on ‘hearing’ which is far more important than worrying about eye contact or head-nodding; (2) Don’t interrupt or then ask too many questions; just let the other person talk; (3) Be aware that studies of ‘Listening Circles,’ in which participants cannot interrupt, report that “social anxiety and work-related worries’ of the person speaking are measurably lessened. [ECONOMIST – 1/23/21]
  • PRODUCTIVE WORKING RELATIONSHIPS ARE TOUGH when one party don’t like or trust the other, which can be exacerbated by Lockdowns, and increase potential for misunderstandings. It’s important to recognize and distinguish ‘dislike’ from ‘distrust.’Dislike is a personal judgment stemming from disgust, distaste, resentment or even jealousy.” However, by taking the time to communicate directly, to become aware of the ‘purpose’ of working together and clarifying the importance of individual responsibilities, the other person can be “humanized and feelings reframed.” Distrust is a completely different issue however and, if based on tangible evidence, may require management involvement before effectiveness could be improved.  [FAST COMPANY – 1/22/21]
  • APATHY – A LACK OF INTEREST OR MOTIVATION, along with “changed personality or language leading to impulsivity, socially inappropriate or repetitive behavior” – can predict Dementia as early as age 45. Often misdiagnosed as laziness or depression, brain-scanning studies of over a thousand people over several years found a third with family history of a particular genetic condition. None had any symptoms of dementia at that time, but half subsequently showed “brain shrinkage in areas that support motivation & initiative, which predicted later cognitive decline, accelerating as they approached onset of dementia symptoms.”  [SCIENCE DAILY – 12/14/20]
  • SUBCONTRACTING OF EMPLOYEES IS A FAST-GROWING TREND in many industries ranging from delivery drivers, to Emergency Room doctors, to over 75% of hotel workers. Referred to as ‘Russian Doll’ workplaces, nationwide staffing companies specializing in particular employment niches now help businesses “reduce company costs while detaching workers from shared successes and making it harder to seek better work conditions & benefits.” Call DCG for courtesy consult on other factors in this strategy. [THE WEEK – 1/29/21]
  • COVID FATALITIES MAY HAVE BEEN “INFLATED TEN-FOLD.” When the pandemic was acknowledged last March, the CDC “adopted new Guidelines, ignoring universal data collection guidelines which have been used successfully since 2003… and began measuring any fatalities where the Covid-19 virus was detected as it being ‘direct cause’ of death, without regard for 94% of deaths which also listed ‘comorbidities’ – Other Contributing Causes (OCC), like decedents with pneumonia, cardiac arrest, respiratory disease, gunshot wounds, road accidents, or suffering myriad & other traumatic & sudden deathly events; One Florida examination found over 50% of death certificate factors where OCC clearly renders the virus irrelevant.”  [RED STATE – 1/25/21]

       Nearly 40 million firearms background checks were processed last year, 5 million for first-time gun owners, “amid fears of political violence and pandemic-related anarchy,” according to Axios. The disparity of today’s pathetic cultural, political and social spectrum about the direction of our society:   https://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2021/01/i_wish_i_didnt_know_now_what_i_didnt_know_then.html