Book Review: Shut Up and Say Something: Business Communication Strategies to Overcome Challenges and Influence Listeners by Karen Friedman

Shut Up and Say Something by Karen Friedman
Shut Up and Say Something by Karen Friedman

2010, Praeger
Hardcover, 249 pages, $44.95

HBA Greater Philadelphia member, 2010 Leadership Conference seminar leader, and HBA Greater Philadelphia chapter speaker Karen Friedman has written a practical, easy to use reference guide for business communications. As her title implies, people often talk a lot and say very little. Karen set out to correct that and empower you to communicate clearly, concisely and passionately in order to impact others with your intended messages.

This practical guide is organized from Z to A in order to “remind readers to keep the end goal “Z” in mind when faced with daily communication challenges. Each entry is stand alone so that while you can read the book from start to finish, you can also pick it up and focus on the section that relates to your current challenge from Z for zip it—“you never have to explain what you do not say” to A for approachable attitudes that remind us that “the vibe you give off is the one you get back.” Karen sprinkles the book with first hand experiences from her years as a communications consultant and as a television reporter. Her coaching notes give you the take home messages from the section in short, actionable bites. Sticky, easy to remember sound bites are in boxes to stand out. Some examples:

  • Great leaders empower others by making them feel important so they want to follow.
  • Executive presence is how you use your personal style to empower and connect with others.
  • If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.

Clearly Karen understands business communication well enough to explain it simply.

Reviewed by Carol Meerschaert, MBA, RD

HBA members who have written books are invited to submit them for review. We also welcome suggestions for business and leadership books to review. HBA members can volunteer to write book reviews. Contact Carol Meerschaert, HBA director of marketing and communications for details.

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