Mia Sherwood Landau


The creative urge is a wonderful thing, except it has a habit of getting in the way of simple, clear communication.

Have you ever stared at expensive modern art and wondered, what the heck is that? What is the artist trying to say?

Have you ever read a modernistic poem that left you feeling a bit foolish because you didn't have a clue what it meant?

I have done both, and remembering back, I did not like those forms of art because they did not create a feeling that I like. I felt stupid, and stupid is not my favorite feeling.

Great creativity is not necessarily great communication. Creativity often breeds miscommunication.

Kenneth Roman and Joel Raphaelson say it succinctly in their Third Edition of Writing That Works -

"It is not enough to write sentences and paragraphs that your reader can understand. Careful writers are ever alert to the many ways they might be misunderstood."

Taking the time to get into the personal perspective of our readers and listeners is truly a kind gift we can give them. It is a gift only we can give, and one that has become increasingly rare and precious in the midst of incessant digital noise.

Developing our personal branding requires thoughtful consideration of not only how we desire to be understood, but to how we may inadvertently be misunderstood.

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