When it comes to effective communication, it’s often thought that an engaging manner and business acumen will win over an audience. But according to Lisa Fey 01EMBA, a professional speaker and mentor to business leaders and academics, communication is more about the positivity and integrity that an individual exudes in the workplace, as well as the ability to ask the right questions. “You can’t be a subject matter expert in everything,” she said.

Fey outlines the ways for any professional to amp up their communication skills in her new book, IMPROVe Your Communication: 52 Tips for Accelerating Your Performance, Positioning, and Perception. After almost thirty years climbing the corporate ladder working as a sales and marketing executive for The Coca-Cola Company, Fey branched out eight years ago to apply her corporate knowledge by advising C-suite executives and other professionals.

Fey has also tried her hand at improv comedy and standup, doing a number of sets in comedy clubs across Atlanta. Her book makes it clear that those improv skills and humor can certainly serve executives well, helping to pull listeners into a conversation and making the speaker more memorable. The 52-page book is short and sweet, she said, designed to sit open and be used as a reference. Fey described it as “fluff-free,” which is certainly good for professionals who find themselves pressed for time. “People like that I am very direct and that I add in a bit of humor. People are responding to it, and the time value equation is really the big thing.”

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Myra Thomas is an award-winning business reporter, having written for Thomson Reuters, Dice.com, Middle Market Growth Magazine, The Secured Lender and many other publications. She has also served as Regional and Online Editor for NJ Biz, New Jersey’s business newspaper. Myra’s business acumen comes from her experience as a senior executive for a Lloyd’s of London intermediary.