Category Archives: Gotcha!

Political Strategies of Slippery Criteria and Strategic Ambiguity Used by James Comey Against Clinton

In The Secret Handshake and my other work, I’ve written about political strategies used to derail the careers of people. One such strategy is applying “slippery criteria.” Here, what is held against one person to make him or her appear … Continue reading

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Was There Media Sleight of Hand in the Hillary Clinton Email Fiasco?

During the last U.S. presidential campaign period we saw how an attribute usually valued in a candidate was turned into a weakness.  That characteristic was experience.  Hillary Clinton had the experience, Barack Obama offered hope and change.  Experience lost.  In … Continue reading

Posted in Gotcha!, Influence, Politics | 1 Comment

Handling Put-Downs at Work

I’ve been traveling the last few weeks, but back to home base.  My latest blog on Big Think takes a look at how to deal with put-downs.  Most of us drive home many days of each year thinking about what … Continue reading

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Complementing the Campaign to Banish the Term “Bossy”

Banning of the word “bossy” as it is often used to describe women who take charge is a goal set by Sheryl Sandberg, author of Lean In and a worthy one.  If nothing else, attention to the term and its … Continue reading

Posted in "Leaning in" -- Asserting yourself, Bullying, Comebacks, Gotcha!, Unwanted Repetitive Episodes | Leave a comment

The Compliment-Slap Trap

One of the more difficult comeback challenges occurs when people embed an insult in an otherwise seemingly pleasant conversation. It’s more common in cultures where directness is socially discouraged. You’re speaking with someone who appears to be pleased to see … Continue reading

Posted in Bullying, Comebacks, Gotcha! | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Taunting and Verbal Sparring — Are They Not Your Style?

Perhaps you listened to Here & Now on PBS today.  Professor Gary King of Harvard University was interviewed.  In a study involving 64,000 congressional press releases, he and his team discovered that our representatives taunt 27% of the time.  He … Continue reading

Posted in Comebacks, Confrontation, Gotcha! | 1 Comment