Knowing how women and men communicate, and being able to switch between the two styles, is crucial in the workplace, as well as at home and in the community, says Audrey Nelson, Ph.D., speaker, author and communications consultant. Nelson, who is from Boulder, Colorado, was the keynote speaker for the Women’s Fund of Greater Omaha’s Oct. 1 fall luncheon.
More than 650 people attended the ninth annual luncheon, which also featured presentation of grant awards totaling $125,000 to area nonprofit organizations serving women and girls. Honorary co-chairs were Pam Hernandez, Woodmen of the World, and Sue Korth, Methodist Women's Hospital.
“We need to value what both men and women bring to the table in their communication styles,” Nelson said. These differences are good, she said. “We don’t want men and women to be the same.”
Having the ability to communicate in both male and female styles depending on the context of the situation is valuable, Nelson said. “Code switching is the ability to move in and out of these different styles.” People who use this technique can be strong and assertive when needed and empathetic and caring in other situations, she added.