The Shortest Possible Course in Communication

Everyone is busy and pressed for time, but we all want to make an impact—so here is the shortest course in communication I can give you.

The seven most important words:

I am sorry I made a mistake.

The six most important words:

I will learn to listen better.

The five most important words:

I truly believe in you.

The four most important words:

What do you think?

The three most important words:

I appreciate you!

The two most important words:

Thank you.

The one most important word:


And the last, least important, word:

If you want to have impact—if you truly want to make a difference—don’t let the world just hear you speak, but communicate through everything you do.

Be the kind of leader who holds it together. When times are tough (and they will be), be the kind of leader who does their best. But when you make mistakes (and you will make many), be the first to admit your mistake and say you are sorry.

Be the kind of leader who understands that listening is better than speaking. Too often we underestimate the power of the listening ear. Just to listen can be the greatest act of caring, with the biggest impact on connection.

Be the kind of leader who shows caring. The closest thing to being cared for is to care for someone else. Show appreciation and gratitude to others, speak up when you see hard work, and recognize effort.

Be the kind of leader who takes time on the busiest day. Never be too busy to appreciate others, to say, “Good job—I’m proud of you.” Gratitude inspires people to do great things.

Be the kind of leadership who celebrates in teamwork and collaboration. The strength of the team is each individual member. The strength of each member is the team. Be the kind of leader who engages with and is curious about each member, and set an example of open collaboration.

Be the kind of leader who puts we ahead of me. Don’t be the kind of leader who speaks in the terms of I and me. It is a simple but fundamental truth that by binding together as a single force each of us will remain strong and unconquerable.

Lead From Within: Leadership is far from simple. Sometimes we need quick reminders that communication is essential if we want to make a difference. What you say matters, and everything you do says something.



N A T I O N A L   B E S T S E L L E R
The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness

After decades of coaching powerful executives around the world, Lolly Daskal has observed that leaders rise to their positions relying on a specific set of values and traits. But in time, every executive reaches a point when their performance suffers and failure persists. Very few understand why or how to prevent it.

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Photo Credit: Getty Images

Lolly Daskal is one of the most sought-after executive leadership coaches in the world. Her extensive cross-cultural expertise spans 14 countries, six languages and hundreds of companies. As founder and CEO of Lead From Within, her proprietary leadership program is engineered to be a catalyst for leaders who want to enhance performance and make a meaningful difference in their companies, their lives, and the world.

Of Lolly’s many awards and accolades, Lolly was designated a Top-50 Leadership and Management Expert by Inc. magazine. Huffington Post honored Lolly with the title of The Most Inspiring Woman in the World. Her writing has appeared in HBR,, Fast Company (Ask The Expert), Huffington Post, and Psychology Today, and others. Her newest book, The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness has become a national bestseller.

  1. computer repair in schaumburg

    08. Jul, 2014

    Hi there, I log on to your new stuff like every week.

    Your story-telling style is witty, keep doing what you’re

    Reply to this comment
  2. Terri Klass

    08. Jul, 2014

    Great post, Lolly! I love how you creatively portrayed important leadership messages of love.

    I would just add: How can I help?


    Reply to this comment
  3. LaRae Quy

    08. Jul, 2014

    Wow…a very impactful post, Lolly!

    Every phrase is so important if we want to be the sort of leader that truly accomplishes things with other people.

    It takes a strong mind to focus on someone besides ourselves….

    Reply to this comment
    • lollydaskal

      09. Jul, 2014

      Thanks LaRae

      Everything we say matters, everything we do matters, our words connect us to others. Our words having meaning.

      Reply to this comment
  4. Bill Benoist

    08. Jul, 2014

    So easy to do – to engage others with kind words. It’s just a shame it is not practiced more often.

    Great post, Lolly!

    “Thank you”

    Reply to this comment
  5. Panteli Tritchew

    09. Jul, 2014

    We need not be shamans to work magic. Hearts, like doors, can be opened with the right keys. The right words and gestures can open our own and others’ hearts. This is a lovely list of magic words, Lolly. Thank you.

    Reply to this comment
  6. Muz

    10. Jul, 2014

    Currently, I’m at the crossroads on so many levels in my life and your list is thought provoking. I believe I can take some right decisions if I ponder on these words.

    Thank you, Lolly.

    Reply to this comment
  7. Diane Dutchin

    11. Jul, 2014

    Deeply passionate, speaking from the heart, rich, and spot on.
    This skill set is too often overlooked, which can result in unhealthy behavioral impact .
    Thanks for sharing. This should be printed, and taped to every wall…especially…everyone!
    Taping to my wall.

    Reply to this comment
  8. ada njom

    18. Jul, 2014

    Hello Lolly, I wish to be with you in person.
    You are reach enough. I am learning alot from you.
    Thanks God for making me get in contact with you. I will never be the same.

    Reply to this comment
  9. David Brooks

    19. Jul, 2014

    I am a new participant in your blog and I am gathering inspiration and hope every time I read a new post. You and bloggers are truly inspirational people! Keep on Blogging!

    Reply to this comment
  10. Dr. Sapna

    20. Jul, 2014

    Thank you Lolly. The basics of communication are global and applicable to entire humanity irrespective of nationality, gender, caste and status. AS I see it as a Counselor, most interpersonal and intra-personal issues are based on improper communication. Thanks once again for making it simple for all.

    Reply to this comment
  11. Chantal Bechervaise

    27. Jul, 2014

    Love this post Lolly! So clear, succinct and to the point. I am taking a communications class right now but this sums up key points for great communication.

    Reply to this comment
  12. Guvenc Altas

    01. Aug, 2014

    I really benefit from your posts Lolly ! We’re Lucky having you

    Reply to this comment
  13. Lori Ann Reber

    02. Aug, 2014

    Beautiful! I recently read an article about communication levels – Superficial, Personal, Validating. Superficial is fine but can not sustain healthy realationships. Your simplicity here takes us to where meaningful relationships desire to be – Personal and Validating! Thank you!

    Reply to this comment
  14. Søren Schnedler

    08. Aug, 2014

    You are as always right Lolly 🙂 As Martin Luther said many years ago:
    “You are not only responsible for what you say, but also what you do not say”
    And you might add ” – and what you do, and do not do”

    Reply to this comment
  15. Montse Rull

    17. Aug, 2014

    Great post to practice everyday! Thank you so much, Lolly.

    Reply to this comment
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    06. Sep, 2014

    I’m gone to inform my little brother, that he should also pay a visit this webpage
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  17. Khalid

    30. Oct, 2014

    Hello there
    Great and so precious words. Very well said.

    Reply to this comment
  18. ROHAN

    13. Nov, 2014

    Great one Lolly,

    I learnt a lot from this.

    Somewhere/ Some how, I feel that, Leader is more about I and Leadership is more about We. Both go hand in hand.

    So I and We both are Important.

    When Me Overpowers We – Leader shows his INFLUENCING Skills

    When We Overpowers Me- Leader shows his RELATIONSHIP Skills

    At Last :-

    Leaders are Masters of Extremes- They Reflect Balance to People and Situations

    Followers are Seekers of Balance 🙂

    Leaders usually have a High Level of Individuality ( I and Me) and more so able to represent it with Highest Level of Diversity ( We)

    Warm Regards,


    Reply to this comment
  19. Ajit Kumar

    13. Mar, 2017

    ‘Few words’ which could help in gaining becoming a LEADER. I would wish that every leader reads your Blog.

    Reply to this comment
  20. Tarak Banerjee

    23. Mar, 2017

    “I” is the word through which all the work is done. Any exceptional work is also through “I”. Team always achieves average. So why demeaning :”I”. Please explain.

    Reply to this comment
  21. Gbenga Oyewole

    17. Apr, 2018

    Sincerely speaking, your articles has contributed and will still continue to impact my life positively.

    Get ready for the day I am going to teleport you blood and flesh to Nigeria to train emerging leaders.

    I am greatful for your positive impact.

    Reply to this comment

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