How to Instantly Connect with Anyone

Wouldn’t you agree that life is all about quality connections? Our success, happiness and well-being are largely the by products of our ability to get along well with others and cultivate positive relationships. Below is a checklist of ingredients that we discuss in our communication and interpersonal relationships workshops. You can see more information on these and other communication tips from the book, “Get Along with Anyone, Anytime, Anywhere” by Arnold Sanow and Sandra Strauss.

  • Make people your passion
  • Be interested, not just interesting
  • Be a conscious connector in building positive relationships
  • Boost good feelings in others
  • Communicate with care
  • Engage the interest of others by focusing on their interests
  • Approach each interaction with positive intent
  • Take the initiative to reach out to others first
  • Project a positive presence
  • Be attentive
  • Express empathy
  • Build trust; mean what you say, and say what you mean
  • Adapt how you communicate to best serve what others need
  • Act in ways that make people feel valued
  • Give feedback tactfully and receive it willingly
  • Create a sense of safety and openness
  • Mend misunderstandings
  • Keep an open mind
  • Seek to understand how others see a situation
  • Acknowledge and honor the feelings of others
  • Monitor and master your emotions
  • Hear people out
  • Drop any need to “be right”
  • Let go of grudges
  • Manage difficult interactions with effective strategies
  • · Greet people with a smile
  • · Open your heart when it closes
  • · Seek peace when others don’t
  • · Be responsive to what others want or need
  • · Respect differences
  • · Let words of caring and kindness work magic
  • · Don’t take anyone for granted
  • · Thank people for their help, their time, their service, their
  • thoughtfulness, their caring, and their support
  • · Act as a catalyst to help others get what they want
  • · Praise positive behaviors
  • · Energize the winning spirit
  • · Make the right choices to create desired outcomes
  • · Give people credit for their ideas
  • · Express a dazzling attitude, even when it’s difficult
  • · Resolve conflicts with diplomacy
  • · Build bridges that join; remove walls that separate
  • ·
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    Release negative labels (of yourself or others)

  • · Speak your truth
  • · Accept responsibility; avoid playing the blame game
  • · Forgive others (and yourself) for flubs, faux pas, and foibles
  • · Light the way with laughter
  • · Project a cooperative spirit
  • · Express enthusiasm
  • · Encourage the expression of gifts, talents and personal
  • excellence
  • · Model the behaviors you want others to express
  • · Handle every connection with care and keep them in good
  • repair



What’s New for 2012?

  The Lett Group International Etiquette Training    I know it seems silly to be asking “What’s new for 2012?” in mid February but since I (Cynthia Lett, Editor)  have been under the weather since late December, 2011 and am just now ready to tackle the year with energy and clarity of mind and purpose, I am going to pretend that 2012 starts NOW!

This year The Lett Group will continue to offer our Managing Protocol Issues and Boardroom Polish public registration seminars in the DC area.  AND… we have a new public program we call Casting Your Net. It is a two-hour seminar and one-hour party focused on the Why, When, Where, and How of Networking. 

Of course, our main focus will continue to be offering our expertise and training to international and domestic companies and their employees which are committed to customer service, cross-cultural communication, employee retention and development and building the best at-work communities in which their employees and clients enjoy their business relationships.   We will continue to be available to travel  to your site, welcome you to Washington, DC or Philadelphia, Pennsylvania or work with you on-line, on Skype or through Facebook.

There are several other new programs we will roll -out separately because they are SO BIG they deserve their own post and announcement.

We are grateful for your continuing interest in The Lett Group and our programs, books and materials. I, Bob Frye, Ellen Shackelford, Sue Abrams, Arnold Sanow, Dr. Mark Munoz, Marva Goldsmith and Trevor Gatty look forward to meeting and working with you this year. 

We wish you Happiness, Prosperity and most of all Good Health!

Are You Shy? Old Wisdom for Fitting In.

Many people consider themselves shy.  They feel bad about themselves because they don’t feel that they “fit in”.  This short movie may be from 1947, but the wisdom shared is the same today. Read More

Why Won’t They Call You Back?

by Marc Cenedella (Founder and CEO of

Marc Cenedella

Why haven’t they called you back?

The interview went well — you’re pretty sure you nailed that question about how you could contribute to the team’s new mobile initiative — and you really hit it off with the HR person. You’ve got a background in exactly the area they’re looking for and you know you’re perfectly qualified for the role.

So why haven’t they called you back? After all, it’s already been two whole days! Don’t they realize that you’d be perfect and you’re just itching to go?

To paraphrase John Wayne, “Now hold on just a minute there, pilgrim.” (Or maybe that’s Robin Williams impersonating John Wayne, I’m getting my childhood TV mixed up…)

I know you are very, very excited and very eager to find your next role. After all, you deserve it!

But you need to be aware of the company’s timing as much as your own. Of course, because more than one person is involved in the decision, there will be a hiring process. Feedback needs to be collected, budgets need to be consulted, and meetings must be held.

All of which takes time.

So expecting that you’ll be getting feedback or another interview request the very next day after your visit is just a bit unrealistic. As a matter of fact, expecting and assuming that they’ll be following up at all is probably unrealistic these days. You’ll need to be proactive and do the following-up yourself after a reasonable amount of time has passed.

What’s a reasonable time frame? It’s long enough so that it doesn’t seem you’re breathing down their necks, and it’s soon enough so that they don’t think you’ve forgotten.

My advice is to wait a week between call-backs.

Just put it in your calendar — after you’ve had a call, an interview, an e-mail — just jot a note to yourself to follow up seven days later. And forget about it until then — fretting doesn’t make it better.

What should your follow-up calls (better) or e-mails (OK) read like?

“Hi, Mrs. Lee, I had such a wonderful time speaking with you last week and I think I could contribute a lot to Acme. So I’m just following up on our conversations and would love to hear back from you. You can reach me at this phone or that e-mail address.”


“Hello, Tom. When we met three weeks ago I mentioned how Ink, Inc. would be a great opportunity to apply my software development management skills in an industry I’m familiar with. So I would very much appreciate the chance to connect and hear what you’re thinking about my candidacy. You can reach me at this phone number.”

In each conversation, you’re trying to remind them of the three Es: you exist, you’re excited, and you’re expecting to hear back from them.

You exist. Now, of course, you haven’t forgotten this since you last spoke with Mrs. Lee or Tom Pruitt, but you know what?, they might have forgotten about you. And it’s not because you’re insignificant or not qualified or not wanted. It’s just with hiring on the upswing, and HR departments and recruiters still under-staffed from the recession, they don’t have time to follow up with all of the people they’ve spoken with. So a gentle reminder that “Hey, I’m here” can remind them of how much they liked you.

You’re excited. Sometimes the candidate with the consistent and persistent enthusiasm can get the nod just for showing sustained interest. Make sure you communicate why you’re interested in the role and why you’d be great.

You’re expecting. Don’t ask them to call back “only” if they’re interested or “only” if there’s an update. You burned up a good few minutes of your time doing the favor of reaching out to them, so ask them to give the favor back in return. Go ahead and politely suggest the return call — it will give you a chance to get them back on the phone, sell yourself some more, and find out what the scoop is on their side.

Also, it’s worth mentioning for good order that there are also three Es you want to avoid. You don’t want to tell them that you’re enraged that you haven’t got the job yet, over eager because you’ve got nothing else going on, or an egomaniac who thinks they should feel lucky that you’re considering them. Nobody wants to hire an angry, desperate jerk.

Keep calling back each week, politely and persistently.

If you’ve got the patience of Job and the stamina of Lou Gehrig, then keep at this for 8-10 weeks. But for most folks, I suggest limiting it to 5. If they haven’t called you back after five weeks, then you probably aren’t going to be hearing from them after 10, and your time is best spent elsewhere. (But don’t give up after three, which is what too many people do — I’ve seen too much luck created on those fourth and fifth calls for you to skip them!)

Building Instant Rapport

The foundation for building rapport is based on the exchange of a few basic communication signals. Here are 4 key ways to build instant rapport. This is based on the book, Get Along With Anyone, Anytime, Anywhere by Arnold Sanow and Sandra Strauss.

1. Smile. A smile is the connecting point of a relationship, whether personal or professional. It signals interest and conveys care and concern. A smile can make or break a connection; its absence can leave others worried or wondering what you’re hiding behind that frown. Tip: Smile when talking on the phone. The listener can hear it in your voice.

2. Shake it up! A handshake is extremely important in American culture, but you have to know how to shake properly. A limp handshake can communicate disinterest; a bone-crushing one often is perceived as a power play. Be the first to extend your hand. Make eye contact and smile while offering an introductory remark or saying hello. Give about three firm shakes and then release your grip.

3. Play the name game.People love to hear others address them by name. It signals that they are important. But what if you’re one of the thousands who literally forget a person’s name as soon as you hear it? The easiest and most effective way to remember, is to fully concentrate on a person’s name during the introduction and then repeat it out loud immediately: Susan, it’s a pleasure to meet you. Another idea is to look for a personal connection: Angie! That’s my favorite aunt’s name! Use the name frequently in conversation (but not too much). If it’s an unusual name, inquire about its origin: Houston! Does your name reflect Texan roots?

4. Define Your MO (Marketing Opportunity).Create a personal commercial – a concise, clear statement of what you want others to know about you. Your statement should define what you do for a living, who you work for and what results your work provides. For example, instead of saying: I work for XYZ Advertising, say: I produce marketing materials to help businesses strategically position their products and services to consumers.

By Arnold Sanow  (Associate of The Lett Group)

Arnold Sanow is a Speaker, Seminar Leader, Facilitator and Coach. He is the author of “Get Along with Anyone, Anytime, Anywhere”