Red Diamonds: a Short Conversation: Credibility, Influence and Persuasion; Spin-Free Crisis Communications; Interviews; Mastering the Monkey Mind; Becoming More Powerful, and More

(Red Diamonds Newsletter: Michael Toebe, writer and publisher)

A weekly newsletter on communication, decision making, behavior, trust, conflict, risk, professional relationships, resilience, reputation and wiser, more successful crisis management. Red Diamonds regularly includes interviews with bright, accomplished minds.

This Week’s Contents

A Short Conversation: Credibility, Influence and Persuasion
(Allen N. Weiner, Managing Director of Communication Development Associates)

Communication is Behavior: Shouting and Communication; Why?

Advisory: A Look at Spin-Free Crisis Communications

Interviews: Answers to Resistance to Learning
Randall P. White, Ph.D., Margaret J. King, Ph.D., Roxanne Derhodge,
Tom Henschel and Dave Popple, Ph.D)

One Overlooked Skill to Create Progress and Breakthrough
(Irina Cozma, Ph.D.)

Impostor Syndrome Often Lacks Evidence of Truth Yet is Strongly Felt
(Stevon Lewis, LMFT and Impostor Syndrome Specialist)

What are You Really Communicating to People?
(Professor Mindy Peck Kurtz)

How to Access Higher Level Thinking
Rosalene Glickman, Ph.D., CEO, Executive Coach and Performance Optimization Expert)

Brain Mastery: Learning About Our Monkey Mind
Interview with Jennifer Shannon, LMFT
Author of Don’t Feed the Monkey Mind

Reputation Talk Podcast: One Road to Becoming More Powerful

Coming Attractions

Red Diamonds News: New Web Real Estate

Connect or Contact

Parting Intelligence Brief: Changes and Difference, Failing and Trying
(Mignon McLaughlin and Jeff Bezos)

(Allen N. Weiner, Managing Director of Communication Development Associates)

Trust, credibility, influence and persuasion are critical components for success, for any leader or organization and Allen N. Weiner is an excellent expert on those areas of study and practice.

Weiner is the Managing Director of Communication Development Associates, Inc. and the author of How Intelligent People Lose Credibility — and How They Can Get it Back. He gifted me time in this week’s short conversation.

What does credibility mean to you and how hard earned (and kept) is it?

“It’s a perception arising out of five qualities,” Weiner says. “You have to demonstrate: competence, composure, character, likability and high energy. Competence is not easily earned. The other four are the result of behaviors that are easily learned but take effort to sustain.”

How can a leader best build influence and be most persuasive to the point that they can benefit from those qualities and excel?

“Treat the word ‘influencer’ as ‘opinion leader.’ An opinion leader is thought to be similar to the led (followers) with one exception: the led believe the opinion leader knows more than she or he does on a variety of issues,” Weiner says. “The 40 percent of American voters who like Trump think, ‘He’s just like me but he knows more than I do.’

“How can a leader build that? Well, they develop extraordinary competence in his chosen field. They build recognized competence. For instance, she or he goes to Stanford. She or he gets an MBA. They work their way up in Private Equity. All of that. In addition to competence they develop behaviors that give them the rest of the package.

Executive Composure: a controlled gravitas and weight or heft. Think gravity. A forcefulness. When a person says something very concise and slowly, it has weight.

“For instance, when a (Prime Minister) says ‘Never…have…so many…owed so much to…so…few’ it forces attention. Like a parent who says to a teenager, ‘I…am…so…proud of you.’

Character: they come across as honoring the opinions of others.

Likability: they are someone you want to have a beer with.

High energy: they are an insecure overachiever, 150 percent effort into everything they take on.

Those are the qualities others want to see in him or her and there’s no looking back once that’s done.”

The curiosity of Louise Bevan, a freelance writer, inspired her to ask in the Epoch Times, Why Do People Shout at Each Other When They Get Angry?

(Dr. Asa Don Brown)

Bevan writes: “Dr. Asa Don Brown, an international author and keynote speaker, notes that: ‘As a species, we are emotionally driven, impulsive, confrontational, and fundamentally influenced by opposition.”

While we are driven by opposition, yelling and verbal confrontations rarely positively inspire or motivate another,” Bevan quotes him as saying.

Corralling our emotions and proving more effective is a monumental task yet the path to greater outcomes.

“By avoiding shouting, we practice self-control, competence, and social grace. Best of all, we stand a better chance of being heard,” Brown says.

Red Diamonds: that last quote was, in my estimation, gold. What do you say? We practice self control. We don’t realize that by not significantly raising our voice we are showing tremendous restraint when our emotions are running hot and the impulse to give in to the heat is strong.

We also are showing competence. I would say that is true yet only when we are not instead choosing passive aggressiveness or plotting some other dysfunctional behavior in reaction.

Yet if we choose not to yell and we are using a healthy, effective stress management skill to cool our minds and self soothe while triggered by a stimulus and in the midst of anger arousal we are riding the wave of negative emotion instead of drowning in it and that is a superpower.

It’s another superpower if we can regain our emotional balance and seek clarity to communicate and respond with skill to problem solve wisely.

Most of us, as individuals or organizations, want our reputation to be an asset and work for us, creating and protecting opportunities. Trust and credibility are important to us. We value influence and persuasiveness.

Yet when we choose spin, either consciously or subconsciously, in a crisis, we are acting recklessly and putting our well-being at great risk. Once we start using spin as an approach, we usually stick with it.

The consequences and pain are only a matter of time.

This short piece looks at it and examines what is dangerous about it, the fools who have used spin and what instead is a better way through crisis.

Answers to Resistance to Learning
— This piece examines why people and organizations move away from what is both beneficial and at times, critically important.
An interview and article with Randall P. White, Ph.D., Margarget J. King, Ph.D., Roxanne Derhodge, Tom Henschel and Dave Popple, Ph.D.

One Overlooked Skill to Create Progress and Breakthrough
An interview and article with Irina Cozma, Ph.D.

Impostor Syndrome Often Lacks Evidence of Truth Yet is Strongly Felt
An interview and article with Stevon Lewis, LMFT

What are You Really Communicating to People?
An interview and article with Professor Mindy Peck Kurtz

How to Access Higher Level Thinking
An interview and article with Rosalene Glickman, Ph.D., CEO

Digging up a recent article because it has important value to impart and it might be someone really needs right now.

Our mind can be difficult to manage. It can be unruly and cause us great challenges, adversity and pain. It’s important to gain greater understanding about it so we can be its master and not vice versa.

(Jennifer Shannon, licensed psychotherapist and author)

Jennifer Shannon spoke to me about our monkey mind and anxiety. See what you think (interview and article link here).

If you have comments or questions, please send them to me at the email address near the end of the newsletter.

This week, on Reputation Talk, the bite-sized podcast:

One Road to Becoming More Powerful
Link on Anchor

I’ve linked to the podcast bite on Anchor yet Reputation Talk is now on numerous podcast platforms, and probably whichever one you favor.

Next week, two interviews and articles, at least.

First, a phenomenon that demands the attention of organizations and individuals alike:

What Drives Social Media Mobbing

(Rob Henderson)

Rob Henderson granted me an interview that was educational and deeply insightful. Understanding the dynamics of social media mobbing is important to your reputation, whether as an organization or individual, as it doesn’t always require rotted thinking and behavior before it becomes a fire starter.

Henderson, a Ph.D. student at the University of Cambridge, if you’re interested, has a highly inspirational life story.

(Rachel Korn, research director at the Center for Worklife Law)

Next, Rachel Korn talked to me about Bias Interrupters in the workplace.

Korn, the research director at the Center for WorkLife Law at the University of California Hastings College of the Law, talks about the important work being done that maybe you haven’t heard about.

Organizations can improve their equity, relationships and reputation with what Worklife Law does.

The Red Diamonds Newsletter has new web real estate. You can now, if desired, follow this publication on Twitter:

I tweet the link to each week’s newsletter as well as preview and then publish new interviews, articles or research being published. You will also be able to get some extra value that I don’t publish in the newsletter.

Michael Toebe is a specialist for reputation, relationship communication and more wise and skilled crisis management.

Connect or contact at LinkedIn or

If you have a question that you would like anonymously answered in a Question-and-Answer format in this newsletter, please send it in a concise, yet detailed manner to

(Mignon McLaughlin, author)

“Every day of our lives, we are on the verge of making those slight changes that would make all the difference.”

Mignon McLaughlin
Journalist and Author (1913–83)

Red Diamonds: “We are on the verge.” Sometimes we often take the next step or steps into making those “slight changes.” Maybe we only need to do it once. Or more likely, with consistency. Yet when we do, they can and do “make all the difference.”

What area of your life, professional or personal, would a slight change make all the difference?

(Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon)

“I knew that if I failed I wouldn’t regret that, but I knew the one thing I might regret is not trying.”

Jeff Bezos
Founder, CEO and President of Amazon

Red Diamonds: this Bezos’ quote reminds me of two others. One, when a high school baseball coach my junior year said “you don’t want to look back with regret.” That stuck with me. I didn’t always heed it always yet it has remained in my memory bank.

The second quote is from basketball legend and business magnate Michael Jordan who said “I can accept failure, everyone fails at something. But I can’t accept not trying.”

We regret more what we don’t do, it has been often said, than when we failed.

Try. Keep doing so. Living with regret is a painful experience.

And of course, how I always end each week’s newsletter

​”In the middle of every difficulty lies opportunity.”

Albert Einstein

Michael Toebe is the writer and publisher of the Red Diamonds Newsletter, host of the Reputation Talk podcast (found on numerous podcast platforms) and a specialist for reputation, professional relationships communication and wiser, more successful crisis management.

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Red Diamonds Newsletter: Michael Toebe

Newsletter on communication, decision making, behavior, conflict, psychology, professional relationships, resilience, courage, reputation and crisis.