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Eats, Shoots and Leaves

Our bias about the importance of rhetorical precision has been discussed and emphasized in other blogs. Hard to believe it took us almost ten years to read Lynne Truss’s book, “Eats, Shoots and Leaves”. Her primary chapter topics include the use or abuse of apostrophes, commas, dashes, and other. To understand the title, capture a copy yourself and note the logic that follows “A panda walks into a café . . .” Here are some of our favorite examples, copied dot for dot from the book, to prove the importance of a single dot of ink and how it could affect building consensus.

A woman, without her man, is nothing.

A woman: without her, man is nothing.

OrEats, Shoots and Leaves

“A re-formed rock band is quite different from a reformed one. Likewise, a long-standing friend is different from a long standing one. A cross-section of the public is quite different from a cross section of the public.”

Or

Is it extra-marital sex or extra marital sex?

Is it a pickled-herring merchant or a pickled herring merchant?

If you are sensitive to details, you will enjoy this book, light reading or reading under a light. As Joseph Robertson wrote in 1785, “The art of punctuation is of infinite consequence in writing (NOTE: facilitative documenting); as it contributes to the perspicuity, and consequently to the beauty, of every composition.” This is one self-help book that gives you permission to love punctuation.

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Don’t ruin your career or reputation with bad meetings. Register for a class or forward this to someone who should. Taught by world-class instructors, MG RUSH  professional facilitation curriculum focuses on practice. Each student thoroughly practices and rehearses tools, methods, and approaches throughout the week. While some call this immersion, we call it the road to building impactful facilitation skills.

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Facilitation Expert

Terrence Metz, CSM, PSPO, CSPF, is the Managing Director of MG RUSH Facilitation Training and Coaching, the acknowledged leader in structured facilitation training. His FAST Facilitation Best Practices blog features over 300 articles on facilitation skills and tools aimed at helping others lead faster, more productive meetings and workshops that yield higher quality decisions. His clients include Agilists, Scrum teams, program and project managers, senior officers, and the business analyst community among numerous private and public companies and global corporations. As an undergraduate of Northwestern University (Evanston, IL) and MBA graduate from NWU’s Kellogg School of Management, his professional experience has focused on process improvement and product development. He continually aspires to make it easier for others to succeed.

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