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Acquire: Rules of Order

The first time I encountered Robert’s Rules of Order, I thought them completely ridiculous. What possible purpose could they fulfill? Well, now several decades later and having attended too many meetings, I get it.

We have a hard time navigating conversations that require slow thinking* in real-time. It sometimes makes us forget that the other people in the room are in fact, people.

Today, I would like you to explore what the rules of order could be for you personally. What rules could you adhere to that would make you a better colleague, boss, speaker, and human?

For example, I was often interrupted as a young woman entering the working world. The result was that I became someone who often interrupted others. One of my rules is to breathe deeply twice before beginning to speak. Slowing myself down in this way means that I interrupt far less because I curb the impulse. As an added side effect, I allow slower thinking to have a moment to consider the implications of the topic.

What types of rules should you consider? That depends on the observations you have made about your own interactions. It may be that one of your rules is to listen more attentively. Or perhaps, articulate an idea before it is perfect. It may be to breathe more or slow down your speech. Whatever rules you choose, they should help you engage in conversation rather than monologue or silence.

I’d love to hear your challenges and ideas around this subject. Send me an email and let me know what you think.

*For more on thinking speed, read Thinking Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman. An exceptional book on the neurology of thought and the implications of those patterns for action and interaction.

Gina Razón is the Founder and CEO at GROW Voice LLC, a full-service verbal communication studio in Boston’s Back Bay.  She has over two decades of experience as a teacher of voice and speech, is a communication and change facilitator, and is a voraciously curious voice user.  Gina has worked professionally as a classical singer for over a decade and more recently as a professional public speaker.  For more information on the studio or to book Gina visit