How You Say Things Matters, Exercise for Nonverbal Communication.

Job recommendations for the poor employee. I just read this in Nigel Risners wonderful newsletter. Go through the recommendations and read them out loud using different inflections to emphasize certain words. Paralanguage can make a really big difference to meaning of a message.

I thought your students might enjoy this. I think I will use it as a nonverbal exercise and have people say the recommendations out loud with different vocal inflections.

Ever have to write a letter of recommendation for a less-
than-adequate employee? Or, make a decision about hiring
someone you aren't sure of? In his never-ending desire to be
helpful, my friend Bill Barrows forwarded these key phrases.
You never know when they might come in handy--or serve as
fair warning!

Regarding an employee who is chronically absent:
"A man like him is hard to find."
"It seemed her career was just taking off."

For the office drunk:
"I feel his real talent is wasted here."
"We generally found him loaded with work to do."
"Every hour with him was a happy hour."

For an employee with no ambition:
"He could not care less about the number of hours he had to
put in."
"You would indeed be fortunate to get this person to work
for you."

For an employee who is so unproductive that
the job is better left unfilled:
"I can assure you that no person would be better for the job."

For an employee who is not worth further consideration
as a job candidate:
"I would urge you to waste no time in making this candidate
an offer of employment."
"All in all, I cannot say enough good things about this
candidate or recommend him too highly."

For a stupid employee:
"There is really nothing you can teach a man like him."
"I most enthusiastically recommend this candidate with no
qualifications whatsoever."

For a dishonest employee:
"Her true ability was deceiving."
"He's an unbelievable worker."

Patti Wood, MA, Certified Speaking Professional - The Body Language Expert. For more body language insights go to her website at Also check out the body language quiz on her YouTube Channel at