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Earn an Executive Certificate in Business Communication

In business, good communicators are able to grab attention, motivate action, and create lasting impact. Whether you’re a rising manager vying for a promotion or a small business owner trying to grow your client base, Johns Hopkins Carey Business School’s Executive Certificate in Business Communication will help you excel. I am excited to offer three courses that comprise the Executive Certificate in Business Communication: Persuasive Communication, Effective Workplace Presentations, and Powerful Public Speaking. These interactive courses are held at the Harbor East campus...

Want to Be a Brilliant Public Speaker?

I was quoted in an article on Inc.com about the importance of pausing regularly when talking. Here is an excerpt: Award-winning speaker Steven D. Cohen of Harvard University acknowledges the cognitive value of fillers. But as Toastmasters International points out, too many fillers can distract your audience. That’s why so many speech experts recommend trying to eliminate them from your conversations or presentations. Cohen asserts that the easiest way to do this is to pause. Now, you’re probably thinking, “But I can’t pause! Pausing will make me seem...

Should Public Speaking Be Part of the College Curriculum?

I was quoted in a Harvard Crimson article about the role of spoken rhetoric in the liberal arts curriculum. Here is an excerpt: So what is spoken rhetoric anyway? An art? A practical skill? Steven D. Cohen, who holds a faculty appointment at the Harvard Extension School, where he teaches “Oral Communication In the Workplace,” splits spoken rhetoric into two components. “On a basic level, there’s what you say and how you say it. But what I write about is the music beneath the words,” Cohen said. Vocal performances have a clear connection to spoken rhetoric, but Cohen said that even...

11 Words You Should Never Say During an Interview

I was quoted in an article on CheatSheet.com about the 11 words you should never say if you want credibility. Here is an excerpt: Uh, um, like Filler words like these make you sound dumb and kill your credibility in seconds. Who can concentrate on your accomplishments if all they’re hearing is, “Then, um … I, like, saved the company, uh, I’d say $10,000 in return fees.” Prepare what you’re going to say ahead of time, and speak in shorter sentences. It will help prevent using these words more than necessary. Steven D. Cohen of the Harvard Extension School says we’ve been conditioned to...

Listen: How to Make America Even Greater

My research is quoted extensively in a Huffington Post article that calls for Trump supporters and Trump opponents to listen to one another. As the author notes, “We should listen as long as it takes. We should listen as much as it takes. We should work through our justified sense of violated dignity, and practice listening anyway. We must get over ourselves and show the respect we want. We must be the change we want to see – or hear.” Here is an excerpt: I define listening as what it takes to make the speaker feel understood and respected. This sounds simple, but it is actually incredibly...

How Not to Ruin a Good First Impression

I was quoted in an article on Inc.com about 18 things to avoid saying to make a good first impression. Here is an excerpt: “Um” or “Uh” Those are filler words that we often utter either in the beginning of a sentence or in-between ideas. It’s a, “hold” word. And while these words are commonly found in everyday conversations, Steven D. Cohen, an award-winning speaker who leads career and academic workshops on public speaking at Harvard Extension School, argues that “they often detract from the listener’s ability to understand a...

Can’t Stop Saying “Um” or “Uh”? You’re Not Alone …

I was quoted in a popular article in Quartz on learning how to use filler words better. (UPDATE: My comments on filler words also were published in New York Magazine and Lifehacker.) Here is an excerpt: This is not a new phenomenon (the earliest use has been dated back to 1469), and it’s not exclusive to the English language. Filler words “appear in every language and every culture,” says Steven D. Cohen, an assistant professor of communication at the University of Baltimore. The English um, for example, has a Korean equivalent, eum and a French counterpart, euh. According...

The Secret to Stop Saying “Um” and Other Filler Words

I was interviewed for an article in BBC News on eliminating filler words in business conversations and meetings. Here is an excerpt: “We are so comfortable with our own vocal tendencies that we often overlook them,” said Steven Cohen, assistant professor of communication at the University of Baltimore in the US … Learn to diagnose your own “filler word hotspots” to better anticipate the changes you need to make to your speech, Cohen said. Often, people use fillers at the beginning or end of a sentence or while transitioning from one thought to the next, he explained. Being especially...

Do You Want to Become a Confident and Effective Speaker?

I am offering several executive education programs this summer to help professionals take their public speaking skills to the next level. June 13th & 14th Introduction to Public Speaking: Effective Presentation Skills Harvard Division of Continuing Education June 27th, 28th & 29th Using Your Voice to Lead: Effective Presentation Skills Georgetown University July 18th, 19th & 21st Effective Workplace Presentations Johns Hopkins Carey Business School August 1st & 2nd Introduction to Public Speaking: Effective Presentation Skills Harvard Division of Continuing...