Chapter 20. Speed Up! Increasing Communication Skills

Marlene Caroselli


  • To learn methods to respond more quickly in business situations.

  • To develop the ability to read more quickly and to isolate key details.

  • To increase the ability to write more succinctly.

  • To develop concentration skills.

Group Size

Any number.

Time Required

Approximately ninety minutes.


  • Overhead transparencies for Speed Up! Reading Speed A through E and Aa through Ee.

  • Overhead transparencies for Speed Up! Writing Speed 1 through 3.

  • A set of handouts for Speed Up! Concentration Speed 1 through 3 for each participant.

  • Paper and pencils for all participants.

  • A flip chart and felt-tipped markers.

  • A timing device that indicates seconds.

Physical Setting

Any standard room, ideally with tables for groups of five or six.


  1. Discuss with participants the need for thinking, reacting, reading, writing, and analyzing information faster than ever in today's business environment. Elicit examples from the fast-paced world in which we live. Remind participants of the demands for maintaining or exceeding production levels, even though there are fewer people to do the work. Point out that roles fluctuate, as do the structures within which their roles were once firmly placed. Review the fact that knowledge increases exponentially, causing a demand for new skills on what seems like a monthly basis. (Five minutes.)

  2. Explain that you'll give participants the tools for increasing their speed in three different areas:

    1. Reading

    2. Writing

Get The Pfeiffer Book of Successful Communication Skill-Building Tools now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience books, live events, courses curated by job role, and more from O’Reilly and nearly 200 top publishers.