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How My Dislike of Pizza Improved My Communication Skills



I know what you’re thinking — how could anyone not like pizza?

It’s a fair question, since 94 percent of Americans eat pizza regularly. But it’s true, I’ve never liked it. I love everything about pizza — cheese, sauce, bread — just not all together. Believe it or not, my dislike of pizza has helped improve my business communication skills. Here’s why:

It’s something to talk about.

company_culture_food_gif.gifChances are, you’ve probably never met anyone who doesn’t like pizza, so it becomes an intriguing point of conversation at any event where pizza is being served (pretty much every social gathering). Striking up a conversation with colleagues and coworkers is important to team building.

Small talk in the break room about the weather won’t help you develop any workplace relationships, but getting to know your co-workers can make you more productive in the long run. If you enjoy a good pizza pie, don’t fret — there are plenty of conversation starters that you can use to network. Now that it’s officially football season, a favorite of mine is ‘so did you see the Browns lose Sunday?’ (Or, you can even mention this blog post about a crazy person who hates pizza! That’s sure to get people talking.)

Communication isn’t one-size-fits-all, and neither is party food.

Living in a small town with historically Italian roots, everyone you meet in Youngstown has strong opinions about their favorite pizza place. However it’s safe to say that most people will eat pizza from anywhere, even if it isn’t their favorite. Sometimes you’ll run into a situation where you’ll order the best pizza, and although it’s the “best”, there will be people who simply don’t like it.

Similarly, you may think you’ve developed the best business communication skills, but some employees still aren’t engaging with your information. This doesn’t mean you have to cater to the one outlier of the group, but you need to keep in mind that communication should be personalized for best results.

Think outside the [pizza] box.

I told you I didn’t like the components of pizza when they were put together. This stretches the truth, just a bit. Pepperoni rolls are a favorite of mine, and have all the main ingredients of pizza minus... the sauce. Recently here at the Ving offices, we planned a team lunch and of course, the go-to entree is usually pizza. Remembering that this team member doesn’t eat pizza, they went for a food that is similar to pizza, but is something I would like, too. That’s how we ended up with pepperoni rolls!

Think of your go-to strategy for communication; is it email? On average, business professionals send and receive 122 business-related emails per day. The issue that arises from using email at such a high rate for business communication is the lack of possible interaction within an email. Some people prefer to receive videos, while others might engage more with a PDF of the same information. This is difficult to do in an email, since attachments can be cumbersome with size and formatting limitations, and can be easily missed by your contacts when listed at the bottom of a message.

With Ving digital packets, you can customize the way your information is presented so that all of your contacts engage with your information in the format they prefer. Plus, vings are trackable so you know what your contacts engage with the most. It only takes seconds to gain valuable insights on who is most and least engaged with the information you've shared. Ving allows you to quickly identify where to step in and take proactive action. Over time you will learn the best combination of components to drive maximum engagement.

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