By Roger von Oech
Revised and extended for the Nineteen Nineties, here's the bestselling creative-thinking vintage written through America's prime creativity advisor. Illustrated.
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Extra resources for A Whack on the Side of the Head: How to Unlock your Mind for Innovation
What began as a one-person business six years ago has grown to a staff of ten, occupying four times the company's original space and billing a half-million dollars a year. Specializing in corporate overload and medical and legal transcription, the staff embodies Linda's philosophy: Communication in general and listening in particular are crucial to our success. "We learned as children in school to tone people out if something wasn't of interest to us. As adults that just continues. There is a real art in learning to listen to people.
The "Good Old Days" Let's begin by taking a good hard look at what you do. No one has to tell you how much your job has changed over the past few years, especially if you've been at this for a while. The position you now hold is certainly not what it was twenty or even ten years ago. It is, in fact, evolving so quickly that many of the skills you can't seem to live without today are either just greatly Page 2 enhanced versions of the ones secretaries have always needed or they are entirely new ones that didn't even exist a few years ago.
The secretary's "secret weapon," as you've probably guessed by now, is something very unsexy called communication skills. As a secretary you have always needed communication skills, of course, but never to the degree you need them now. Let's face it, in today's fast-paced, high-tech, and worldwide business environment, communication skills probably do seem a bit prosaic. Of course, if we're talking about e-mail or the Internet, per- Page 3 haps they have a little more pizzazz.