Communications Insight For More Inspiring Leaders What a Cop Out!

What a Cop Out!

 29th Oct 2022
Simon Bucknall, Opening Speaker,  TEDxLondon
“Children naturally learn to talk, they don’t naturally learn to read…”
[UK former Secretary of State for Education]

It’s hard to over-estimate the damage caused by this assumption.

Of course we know reading and writing skills are important!

But so are speaking and listening.

Yet they’re neglected.

Neglected - or at best taken for granted - by school curricula not just in the UK but around the world.

How often do speaking skills define key experiences in life?

On a date

At #interview

In a #negotiation

When building friendships

When #presenting


Seeking to exert influence in #meetings

And more.

Yet from primary school to business school, “the ability to speak” is viewed by the system as secondary; as optional; as non-core.

Many mistakenly presume it to be a “natural gift”.

Others view it as a supplementary side-skill. A nice-to-have.

Still others dismiss it as a dangerous skill, for fear that it acts as a cover for underlying weakness of character, malign intent or plain vapidity.

In practice, the ability to speak and listen plays a defining role in shaping…



Career progression




Team morale

Even the trajectories of nations

And no this is not about me being self-serving.

Because if the skills were taught fully and properly - and sooner - my workflow would diminish.

Speak soon!

#education #career #publicspeaking #communication #writing #school

Fantastic, inspirational and spot-on stuff we need to improve our communication. They are communication wizards!


Mary Lou Masko | Course Director, Laing O'Rourke Centre, University of Cambridge­

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