Articulate ManagementTM

Catalog of Services

Building a Better World
Through Benevolent Commerce

Articulate Management Home Page


This Web Page is a hypertext adaptation of an available hardcopy document dated 11/5/97; minor web version updates, 5/15/97, 2/23/98, 12/17/98.

This catalog is a single crosslinked document; you may save it to your hard disk for off-line reading without breaking the file.
Copyrighted: Permission is hereby granted to make unaltered copies for distribution.

Printed copies are available; call for information.

Table of Contents


Articulate Management
Affirmative Direction
Our Typical Delivery Plan
Troubleshooting Guide (Needs Assessment)
An Integrated Management Method

Basic Services Package
Analysis & Strategy Consultation
Example Profile
Composite Profile
Alignment Construct
Strategic Contingency Planning
Standing Enhancement Procedures
Philosophy for Management via Socratic Inquiry
The Affirmative Conversation
Consensus Adjustment
Semantic Adjustment
Workshops:  Custom;  General Considerations
Communication Workshop
Objective Interactions Workshop
Sales Workshop


Non-indoctrination Policy

Articulate ManagementTM

Articulate Management is a specialty executive consulting firm. We offer Affirmative Direction, a comprehensive step-by-step management philosophy and method that clearly articulates company vision, goals and strategies, and automatically stimulates employee alignment with them. Affirmative Direction generates increased earnings and unprecedented levels of corporate integrity.

Working as private consultants to top executives, Articulate Management has spent the past several years quietly applying advanced philosophy to assist already-successful Presidents, CEO's and their managers in doubling and even tripling their companies' growth and/or profitability curves.

We have developed a way to ensure that your ideas get across to your people effectively, so they can take them as their own and run with them with minimal supervision. This usually increases productivity more than 25% while comparably reducing administrative and disciplinary drag on executives.

We have developed a management method that focuses you and your people on affirmatively pursuing what you want rather than negatively avoiding what you don't want. It helps your people find their own reasons for doing excellent work. This can facilitate general performance improvements of over 40%.

We have assisted clients to achieve many specific results, including:

Doubling a working General Manager's throughput;
Obtaining a 10X improvement in a major division of a public utility;
Tripling an engineering firm's profits while virtually eliminating interpersonal friction;
Reducing turnover in client companies by an average of 50% or more the first year;
Increasing profitability in every client for whom profit was the primary value;
Increasing an owner's productivity while recovering 2-3 hours per day for his family;
Removing the stress and guesswork from dealing with staff; and,
Assisting scores of top executives to rediscover the joys of their work (and lives).

The power of our methods is that they are based on mutual respect and a practical philosophy. Further, we have a special insight into the difficulties involved in communicating vision and motivating people to rally to the future it describes.

Our strategy is to enhance the abilities of leaders to stimulate people to achieve admirable results. Our purpose is to make work (and life) more rewarding by replacing stress and conflict with harmony and initiative.

Articulate Management is a mission to the business community which seeks to reverse the seemingly inevitable trend toward the consumption of the lives and identities of people by the very businesses upon which they must depend to derive their necessities of life. The beneficiaries of this mission are the children of tomorrow, in that our success or failure may well decide whether theirs is a future of stifling regimentation and corporate servitude, or one of limitless possibilities to make individual contributions to the honor of the human spirit, in the process raising the standard of living for the entire world, as they have in renaissances past.

Allen Hacker, founder and Executive Director of Articulate Management, has applied his expertise in General Semantics (a linguistic theory) to the problem of how people envision their businesses and their roles as business executives, managers, employees and customers. He has published a book on personal philosophy explaining how the way we think defines our personal experience of life, and has used the principles from that work in consulting business executives for over twelve years. And he has established an organization composed of Ecclesiastical, Educational and Humanitarian Trusts, each charged with adapting that philosophy to a distinct area of human endeavor. Accordingly, Articulate Management, as a mission rather than a business for profit, is organized as an Humanitarian Trust (ID# 77-0313297).

Mr. Hacker's stated goal for Articulate Management is ¨to have established a universal business and social ethic and practice based on mutual respect¨, which will in turn bring about ¨the world at peace, with benevolent commerce the foremost social enthusiasm¨.

He expects that this will keep him and quite a lot of other people very busy for some time! (Yes we'll be needing people, if you're looking for a worthwhile, honorable vocation!)

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Affirmative DirectionTM

Direct personnel toward (in affirmation of) the company's desired situations and objectives by helping them find their own reasons for performing well.

A comprehensive step-by-step management philosophy and method that clearly articulates company vision, goals and strategies, and automatically stimulates employee alignment with and initiative toward those ideals, all while generating increased earnings and unprecedented levels of corporate integrity.

Most people grow up being told what not to do. And those who have taken their life experience into the business place have extended the tendency to propagate the sins of history into the next generation: they manage against what they don't want instead of in favor of what they do want! In fact, this has gone so far that these days most people are far better at saying what they don't want than at saying what they do want.

We offer a personnel management method called Affirmative Direction that instead tells employees what is wanted and why, using the Alignment Construct, the Strategic Contingency Plans and company philosophy (discussed in the following sections) as the bases for each such conversation. With Affirmative Direction everyone knows ¨what¨ and ¨why¨, and disciplinary situations resolve easily without tending to become ongoing problems.

Affirmative Direction is structured as a series of nineteen steps, each subdivided in terms of philosophical basics and including relevant tools and procedures, through which a company and its personnel must work in order to achieve a powerhouse position of internal alignment and holistic integrity.

The following is a topical listing:





We have yet to find a single organization that performs all of these functions. And most are less than competent at several of the ones they do attempt. (Of course, now that we've published the list....) Actually, each of these steps comprises one or more important techniques, and that's where the real breakdown occurs. Having this list will help some people, but usually only by pointing to how much more they need to learn.

Affirmative Direction is an elegant integration of all of the major management factors, as upgraded according to our philosophy, and includes our own innovations in the vision, planning and interpersonal functions.

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Our Typical Delivery Plan

1. Assist each executive and manager to discover and strategize the correction of his or her specific effectiveness imbalances; the Analysis & Strategy Consultation .

1a. Do the same thing with the executive team and each management group; the Composite Profile.

2. Facilitate the development of an Alignment Construct and Strategic Contingency Plan, to provide a coherent foundation for consistent, predictable management.

3. Train executives and managers on advanced communication skills and the Affirmative Conversation by way of the Interactions Workshops (Objectives, Sales), to give them the interactive tools needed to provide respectful guidance, support and inspiration to their people and each other.

4. Teach the Standing Enhancement Procedures, to provide a process-oriented approach to continuous improvement. Can be done in workshop form.

5. In one-on-one consultations, cover the fundamentals of management philosophy, using our highly effective tutoring method, Socratic Inquiry.

6. In one-on-one consultations (as needed and requested, and absolutely confidential), apply Semantic Adjustment to individual difficulties and performance blocks.

7. Provide additional supportive services, by way of ongoing follow-through.

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An Integrated Management Method

The following outline illustrates how just three of our primary products integrate and enhance existing management technology.

Alignment Construct

Strategic Contingency Planning

Standing Enhancement Procedures

The bulk of this book is filled with descriptions of our primary services. Each fills a niche within Affirmative Direction, and together they fully enable "TQM" (Total Quality Management).

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Troubleshooting Guide
(Needs Assessment)

Are you having difficulties with . . .

. . . getting yourself understood, or getting things accomplished through others?

Our professional Interactions WorkshopTM combines several of our most dynamic training modules. This outstanding workshop teaches you the advanced communication skills you need to make things happen. You'll learn respectful and constructive ways to help others find their own reasons for doing what needs to be done.

. . . your people successfully identifying self-improvement or professional development priorities?
. . . just feeling uneasy, and not sure why?

Maybe they (and/or you!) just aren't sure what to work on first. In our Analysis & Strategy ConsultationTM, in just 2-3 hours you will identify and prioritize your needs more accurately than ever before, and develop a plan for handling them.

. . . your people understanding the company vision?

Our Alignment ConstructTM structures your vision so you can ensure that it's concise, consistent throughout, and easy to convey. Strategic Contingency PlanningTM is a special technique for business planning that makes sure you have options prepared before most surprises arrive. This combination of tools will give you a "room with a view" from which to envision goals and formulate options. And our Standing Enhancement ProceduresTM will keep you on track!

. . . people requiring too much supervision or intervention? . . . accidental saboteurs?

Our Affirmative DirectionTM personnel management method is a comprehensive, constructive, step-by-step way to set up your personnel management mechanisms to make sure your people can win on the job. We'll show you how to get work done through other people by supporting them in their efforts toward company goals.

. . . someone not making quality decisions?

We sometimes misunderstand things without realizing it. Then later we base decisions on that bad information. Garbage-in, garbage-out: needless to say, things go wrong! With our Semantic AdjustmentTM procedures, we can assist you to identify and eliminate the underlying reasons and their consequences.

. . . something else?

Call us!

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In support of benevolent commerce, we offer several tools to assist our clients to become more and more viable, independent and valuable suppliers of necessary goods and services to the people and businesses who are working to use those goods and services to build what we hope will become the world's first true and stable civilization.

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The Basic Services Package

Assist new clients to resolve emergencies and/or to test our effectiveness without committing to our entire program.

A customizable Package that provides our most urgently-needed services at a substantial discount, allowing new clients to resolve emergencies or to test our effectiveness before committing fully.

This package of services is the recommended start-point for every new client individual. It sets the stage for the best results and provides an in-depth sampling of our services, including customized programming for each individual.

The Basic Services Package consists of three parts for an individual and four parts when applied to a group. The additional element in the group package is the Composite application, previewed with the basic three, on the next page.

Analysis & Strategy ConsultationTM

This consultation takes 2-3 hours, and is done in a completely confidential 1-on-1 setting. The objectives are (1) to gain a clear understanding of one's self- and professional-development needs and (2) a strategy for addressing those needs.

Composite Effectiveness ProfileTM

The results of the various members of a group can be combined to produce a composite and strategy for the group.

Objective Interactions WorkshopTM

Communication and the Affirmative Conversation. Note that a workshop subject can be presented in one-on-one format. See Reversion to One-on-One

Or, the Sales Interactions Workshop , for salespeople.

One-on-One Personalized Consultation

The package includes a 10-hour unit of one-on-one consulting that is customized to the specific needs of the individual as identified in the Analysis & Strategy Consultation . For examples of what might be covered here, see Affirmative Direction, Philosophy, etc. , and Semantic Adjustment .

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The Analysis & Strategy ConsultationTM

Identify and prioritize essential self- and professional-improvement needs.

A software-assisted diagnostic to discover an executive or manager's critical underlying weaknesses and how they are manifesting on the job, and to strategize an improvement plan.

The Analysis & Strategy Consultation (A&S), based on the use and interpretation of our Effectiveness Profile Software (TM), takes a mere 2-3 hours to uncover and prioritize the sources of a client's major problems and develop a customized strategy for correcting those problems and enhancing the client's strengths.

The A&S is a computer-assisted guaranteed-confidential diagnostic consultation in 4 parts:

a 100-proposition multiple-choice questionnaire that the client discusses with a consultant as it is filled out, to ensure the most appropriate responses;

an expert-system generated graphical results profile illustrating imbalances among 20 effectiveness attributes;

a detailed interactive discussion of the results and how they indicate the areas needing improvement;

the co-operative development of a strategy for improvement.

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Example Profile

. ---------------------------------------------------------------------- .
.                                                                        .
.                          EFFECTIVENESS PROFILE                         .
.                                                                        .
.                                 RESULTS                                .
.                                                                        .
. ---------------------------------------------------------------------- .
.                                                                        .
.  ACTIVITY: . . . 62                            |         |             .
.                                                      *                 .
. A  Application      75                              |-------A          .
. B  Decision-making  40                    B---------|                  .
. C  Concentration    67                              |---C              .
. D  Proactiveness    67                              |   D              .
.                                                      *                 .
.  WORK: . . . . . 67                            |         |             .
.                                                        *               .
. E  Paperwork        80                              |---------E        .
. F  Finance          63                              |--F               .
. G  Organization     57                             G|                  .
.                                                        *               .
.  TRANSACTIONS: . 53                            |         |             .
.                                                 *                      .
. H  Assertiveness    30                H-------------|                  .
. I  Tenacity         63                              |-I                .
. J  Persuasion       54                           J--|                  .
. K  Motivating       60                              K                  .
. L  Speaking         93                              |---------------L  .
. M  Listening        20          M-------------------|                  .
.                                                 *                      .
.  AFFINITY: . . . 65                            |         |             .
.                                                       *                .
. N  Appreciation     56                            N-|                  .
. O  Kinship          64                              |-O                .
. P  Accommodation    75                              |-------P          .
.                                                       *                .
.  SELF-IMAGE: . . 62                            |         |             .
.                                                      *                 .
. Q  Self-esteem      69                              |----Q             .
. R  Happiness        55                            R-|                  .
.                                                      *                 .
.  ESSENTIALS: . . 56                            |         |             .
.                                                   *                    .
. S  Integrity        50                         S----|                  .
. T  Discernment      62                              |T                 .
.                                                   *                    .
.                                                |         |             .
.                                                                        .
.  Average: . . . .60                            |- RANGE -|             .
.                                                                        .
. ---------------------------------------------------------------------- .
.                                                                        .
.       Copyright (c) 1989-96 by ASC/ Articulate Management, ntc.        .
.                                                                        .
. ---------------------------------------------------------------------- .
For information on procuring the Effectiveness Profile software used to generate the analysis used in the Analysis & Strategy Consultation for in-house use, visit ASC/ BlueFlame Impressions, ntc., our publications unit.

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The Composite ProfileTM

Identify group improvement needs and coordinate professional development.

An application of the Analysis & Strategy Consultation that generates a group dynamics profile which reveals a team's weaknesses and strategizes their correction.

We offer Composite Profiles for groups, which can be very helpful in determining a team's "self"-improvement needs, and for helping each member to better relate to the idealized whole. Composite profiles are often used to adjust the focus gained from individual profiles, in effect re-prioritizing certain individual strategies in order to accelerate the overall improvement of groups that are in severe situations.

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The Alignment ConstructTM

Provide a tool for company and personnel orientation and re-orientation, in the form of a coherent, usable, extensive yet compact visioning statement.

A way to articulate a company's entire philosophy, including vision, principles, major objectives, and progress indicators, all in two or three coherent pages.

We have developed a 15-part model for expressing the client's values, called the Alignment Construct. More than just a marketing-driven mission statement and more than the wistful longings of the boss's dream, the Alignment Construct includes all of the essential details that define the company. It also makes certain that none of these details is in conflict with any other.

The Alignment Construct is a detailed visioning statement that serves as the heart of the first major step of Affirmative Direction, and as the ongoing guiding light for the entire operation.

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Strategic Contingency PlanningTM

Replace rigid projections with a fluid planning model that keeps business plans from becoming obsolete.

A new "controlled chaos" approach to business planning, actually based on Chaos Theory, that separates and enhances corporate strategy and logistics, facilitates the accommodation of unforseen developments, and creates an atmosphere of opportunistic entrepreneurialism without encouraging mercenerial practices.

We have refined a replacement for the fractured old linear model of planning. We call it Strategic Contingency Planning. It uses a variable-path approach to dealing with getting from a just-recently defined "here" to an only vaguely definable but quite possible "there" in an ever-changing future. We have implemented some of the principles of the mathematics of uncertainty (chaos theory) into the processes of the projection and management of goals and projects. (This sounds weightier in the doing than it is!)

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Standing Enhancement ProceduresTM

Provide an effective Continuous Improvement tool.

A tangible set of procedures that are followed in sequence, in response to changing production statistics.

Continuous Improvement is an idea whose worth is unquestioned, but whose means can be quite elusive. The Standing Enhancement Procedures are a set of responses to production and performance statistics that make it possible to extend the principles of management-by-exceptions beyond the factory floor, to the activities of people no matter what their positions. Far from being yet another way of robotizing work, the Standings are actually liberating in that they are applied by the individuals themselves, with the intention of accomplishing their own professional and performance improvements.

The abilities to assume, hold and proceed from a position are the essence of strength. There are many reinforcing facets to these, including clarity, perspective, right action and integrity. All are facilitated by the use of the Standing Enhancement Procedures.

Each Standing is also a procedure: a step-by-step process that focuses and corrects performance toward right action.


Names and definitions:

+4 Transition
A meritorious promotion; expansion into "the next level" or sphere of action after having successfully executed a plan; a graduation or retirement with honors.

+3 Dominion
Broadly influential performance from a respected position.

+2 Abundance
Producing well in excess of need; creating surplus; highly profitable.

+1 Routine
Performance itself merely adequate to maintain the status-quo. Includes minimal or gradual increases.

0 Commencement
Newly arrived and not yet established or recognized.

-1 Atrophy
Needing to concentrate efforts to recover the status-quo.

-2 Jeopardy
Continuing atrophy, or an emergency requiring immediate intervention.

-3 Neglect
Manifesting inappropriately from other than the designated position.

-4 Hazard
Creating problems rather than solutions.

-5 Reservation
Disoriented and paralyzed by indecision; held back by uncertainty or turmoil; uncommitted.

-6 Adversary
Functioning in destructive opposition to an expressed or implied intention.

-7 Fraud
Pretense betraying trust. Like a hypocrite, a fraud is an actor on the stage of life, playing the part of that which it is not.

-8 Chaos
Lacking a basis of reference in terms of which a position may be defined or aligned.

-9 Null
Completely disconnected, as by absence, termination, or death.

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Philosophy for Management via Socratic InquiryTM

Take the manager or executive to the next level of professional mastery through education in the fundamentals behind the techniques.

A topics-oriented clarification of important philosophical issues such as leadership, alignment, ethics and integrity.

If there is to be enlightened interaction among people, then people are going to need to know what that looks like. Within our program we cover the basics of such elemental factors as ethics and integrity, respect-based transactions, exchange, and leadership, to name a few. All this discussion is geared toward developing a complete expression of the company philosophy, so necessary to building a lasting consensus among staff.

Socratic Inquiry is our proprietary instructional method. We do not teach it to clients or outside trainers.

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The Affirmative ConversationTM

Enable managers to create a mutually responsible atmosphere for disseminating information, creating consensus, and troubleshooting defective orientation and poor performance.

An adaptable conversational technique that motivates employees to become brainstorming problem-solvers who find their own personal alignment with company philosophy and goals.

The major technique of Affirmative Direction is the Affirmative Conversation. This is a structured but comfortable discussion method that is used by managers at all levels to help their people to create for themselves a greater understanding of company policy and intention. This mutual-respect oriented technique all but replaces standard disciplinary methods, particularly the more manipulative "psychological" ways of "handling" people. It is taught in several variations, which make it useful in additional areas, such as brainstorming, information presentation, and training.

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Consensus AdjustmentTM

Assist the client to discover the hidden operatives in "corporate culture", to weed out those that cause misalignment, and to seed and cultivate those that lend themselves to the Alignment Construct.

A non-disruptive application of Chaos Theory, to change corporate culture.

Corporate culture is the sum of many parts, each of which is a set of ideas held in common by all or significant parts of the group.

Consensus Adjustment is a proactive process of clarification and re-orientation that addresses each individual's agreements with both aligned and misaligned beliefs about the company and how it should function. This process effectively restructures corporate culture into the image contemplated by the company's Alignment Construct.

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Semantic AdjustmentTM

Assist the client to discover and redefine the hidden operatives in the thinking behind the action. (Individually optional and delivered only upon client request.)

A way to clear out the destructive effects of confusion, disorientation, defective education, pre-emptive defensiveness, and other forms of misalignment.

Perception is reality. At least it seems to be, for the individual. Things are whatever the individual perceives them to be. But what about when the individual's perception is tainted somehow? His or her perceptual errors operate unnoticed to destroy the logic of what he or she is trying to do. It's "garbage in, garbage out".

People go through life defining things for themselves. Everything. But sometimes those definitions just aren't correct: bad information innocently accepted, confused answers to poorly understood questions, and worst, decisions about things, made in the intensity of an upset of some sort.

The individual's already-made definitions become the basis of future observations, and the accumulating garbage becomes the filter that taints perception later.

This situation never becomes spontaneously better; it just gets worse unless something intervenes. And generally, there are very few, if any, effective tools for intervention. Worse, such tools are not often sought out by "normal" people. Thus, for most, the issue is one soaked in quiet desperation.

Semantic Adjustment is a structured conversational procedure for decision-process clarification and personal re-orientation (we don't decide the orientation, the client does). It removes the "mental blocks" and logic diverters that keep one from doing the right things and push one toward the wrong choices. Semantic Adjustment effectively dissolves the underpinnings of destructive performance patterns.

Obviously, Semantic Adjustment can get quite personal. To get the best results, the client must feel, and be, free to talk about anything, to "clear the air" internally, so to speak, without fear of consequences. This need is accommodated by the fact that we can guarantee our clients virtually absolute confidentiality.

Our special training and certification, along with the status of Articulate Management as a Mission, brings our one-on-one consultations under the full protections of confessional. Of course, due to our unique perspective and approach to such things, the format is not what the average person might expect. The situation is one of applying a guided confessional inquiry to the business arena, and whatever additional areas a client finds impacting his or her professional effectiveness.

Our clients are not required to subscribe to any particular idea, belief or point of view in order to receive any of our services and protections. In fact, our approach works even if the client remains completely unaware of its origins. Still, a morally due respect for the client's sensibilities requires us to mention these facts up front. A more detailed examination of that background can be found in our Founder's book describing Articulate Management's Mission and its origins, Doing Well While Doing Good. Further, our non-negotiable policy is that no one can be required to undergo Semantic Adjustment. Employees do not surrender their First Amendment Rights upon being hired by a corporation.

In essence, then, we can offer certain benefits and protections to our clients, without any obligation falling upon the client, that virtually no one else can. Where the client gains the most is in the freedom and depth of self-examination afforded by our exclusive guarantee of virtually absolute confidentiality.

We find that this approach is fully recognized by the law when properly administered in the correct venue under reasonable self-imposed constraints, such as proper training and certification, and our Non-indoctrination Policy.

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Workshops: Custom; General Considerations

Provide a cost-effective format for group presentation of interactive and general skills materials.

We offer three standard workshops at this time: Communication, Interactions, and Sales. They are covered individually in the sections that begin on page.31.

Custom Workshops

Additional workshops will be coming online, as clients indicate topical needs, and custom products are developed in response. We will consider creating client-specific workshops on request.

General Considerations

The following considerations apply equally to all our workshops.


Our workshop fees are 50% of our normal one-on-one fees, all of which are based on hourly rates. This reflects our desire to make our services more accessible to groups. Although this still may result in certain of our workshops costing more than similarly positioned competitive products, we stand on the strength of our method and its inherent ability to deliver above-average retention and achievement.

Class Size

Class size is restricted to facilitate better results. Our normal maximum is twelve attendees. The minimum workshop size is four.


We have found that information overload is one of the reasons most people only retain a fraction of the information presented to them in prolonged workshops and seminars. Our solution to this problem includes breaking up the presentation to allow time for the information to ¨settle¨, and for the participants to practice with it before getting too far ahead of themselves. Everything we teach is intended to be applied on an as-needed basis, and this approach integrates that perspective into the learning exercise. It reflects our experience with getting the most out of the workshop format.

Workshops are best delivered in half-day sessions, allowing time for between-class application assignments and practice. Suggested: Mon-Wed afternoons or evenings, Tue-Thu mornings.

Workshops can also be done one or two sessions a week, but the longer between sessions, the weaker the integration of the material.

Of course, we will present our workshops on a full-day or accelerated basis if the needs of the client require, but we do so with the caution that retention, and therefore application, may suffer. In such cases we just have to lean more heavily upon the superiority of our instructional method, and trust that the attendees will make the greater effort.

Reversion to One-on-One

Any workshop can also be delivered on a one-on-one basis. After all, that's how all our services were originally delivered. Of course, since our workshop fees are 50% of our one-on-one fees, we expect to devote only half the allocated time to delivering the same material one-on-one. Thus a 16-hour workshop topic is scheduled as 8 hours of one-on-one consulting. This usually presents no quality problem, since progress is proportionately slower as more people are involved; One-on-one is quicker because there are less variables.

Reversion to one-on-one usually occurs when an individual has scheduling conflicts, or there simply aren't enough enrollees available to constitute a workshop in the desired time slot.

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Communication Workshop

Improve the level and quality of interpersonal relationships by clarifying and strengthening communication skills.

Covers the meaning and structure of communication and includes several sets of exercises that greatly strengthen communication skills in five important areas:

Has to do with your willingness and ability to "climb into" another person's frame of reference and to truly pay attention at all levels.

To be effective, you must speak with clarity and intention, really owning a communication and delivering it with true meaning.

Possibly the most inspiring thing you can do for others is to really hear them. This seemingly simple task is a common failure among leaders, and results in knowing too little about the uniqueness, talents and situations of their supporters.

Acknowledgment conveys recognitions of and respect to the person you are communicating with, and assists the flow of conversation.

The art of questioning includes persistence and an understanding of when and why (or why not) a valid answer has been delivered.

Communication is a 12-hour workshop; its content is also available as a 6-hour one-on-one segment.

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Objective Interactions Workshop

Improve the level and effectiveness of interpersonal activities without regard to rank, culture or outlook.

Assembled using modules from our most powerful services, this workshop (1) clarifies and strengthens communication skills (a) by way of a set of exercises covering Affinity, Speaking, Listening, Acknowledgments, and Questions, and (b) a set of powerful Semantic Axioms that reveal weak communication and potential misunderstandings as they happen; (2) teaches the client how to establish a reference base for future interaction; (3) teaches our extremely effective Affirmative Conversation, a formatted technique with particular applications to clarification of performance issues, and intervention.

This workshop begins with a ten-hour accelerated Communication Workshop and continues with 6 hours of extension components, including:

How to develop and improve an ¨expected situation¨ statement.

One's performance is a reflection of one's thinking. Therefore the recognition of problems depends upon your articulating your ideas and what you expect to see happening, so you'll have a basis of comparison for when the unwanted happens.

The Affirmative Conversation

Originally developed for troubleshooting departures from the expected and to replace heavy-handed disciplinary actions, while providing a mutually respectful and motivating format for brainstorming constructive alternatives to counter-productive actions and solutions, this tool is presented in two important and useful contexts:

Teaches a constructive and respectful method to help others find and clarify their own reasons for doing what needs to be done.

Teaches a proactive, direct, and non-threatening approach for reaffirming goals and correcting performance when things go wrong.

Interactions is a 16-hour workshop; its content is also available as an 8-hour one-on-one segment.

The Interactions extension sections can be done separately by graduates of our Communication Workshop. Done separately, it is a 6-hour workshop segment or 3 hours of one-on-one.

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Sales Workshop

Improve sales effectiveness while upgrading the process to a mutually respectful and mutually beneficial value-added transaction.

A special adaptation of the Affirmative Conversation for salespeople that focuses on discovering and satisfying the customer's true needs.

Also built upon our Communication Workshop, the Sales Workshop differs from the Interactions Workshop in the focus and application of its extensions. The Affirmative Conversation extension is adapted to the specific needs of the sales development and closing conversations.

You will learn a constructive and respectful method to help clients and prospects discover and clarify the present situation and their own reasons for making necessary changes.

Desired Situation
Learn a technique for assisting a prospect to easily define what is wanted.

The salesperson's job is to assist the buyer to get what is wanted. Most often, this involves helping the buyer to overcome obstacles such as financial restrictions and time problems. You will learn how to convert ¨objections¨ to solutions in your buyers' quest to get the things they need and want.

This workshop supports the concept of limit-demand marketing and relies on the principles of high-probability consultative selling.

(NOTICE: High Probability (TM) Selling is a trademark and book by Jacques Werth and Nicholas Ruben (ISBN0-9631550-1-6), --we do not deliver training in the High Probability Selling method, but we do recommend the book very highly. In our opinion it is tied all-time for number one as the best book on selling ever written. The only direct connection between Articulate Management and the authors and their work is a profound agreement upon the principles discussed in the book. For information on High Probability Selling, training in it, and to buy the book, please visit the authors' website.)

Our Sales training is a 16-hour workshop; its content is also available as an 8-hour one-on-one segment.

The Sales extension section can be done separately by graduates of our Communication Workshop. Done separately, it is a 6-hour workshop segment or 3 hours of one-on-one.

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Ongoing removal of recurring performance barriers.

So far, great. We have the ultimate Continuous Improvement program. But what's to keep it from failing in the same way all others have failed to achieve their full promise? What's to keep the personal failings of people from interfering? The answer lies in our remaining available to the client in the following two ways:


Periodically repeat the Analysis & Strategy Consultation, to guarantee the most productive focus.

The client's Profile changes over time to reflect progress and other developments as they occur. Re-doing the Profile periodically is the best way to ensure that the focus is kept to the greatest need. We do this regularly throughout the course of our program and at least annually with each individual who has completed our program.

This service is also available to individuals who do nothing else with us; sort of an outside annual review!


Remain available to the client for ongoing and future needs.

Individuals may complete our program, but companies never extinguish the need for our services:

New hires will always be a fact of life and a continuing need for additional services;

Existing individuals get promoted and need more advanced services;

Individuals who have successfully completed services may later run into specific difficulties, needing some form of troubleshooting to handle performance barriers that weren't a factor earlier.

We remain more or less permanently available to the client for future needs.

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Articulate Management is a mission to the business community in support of integrity. We facilitate articulation: we don't tell our clients what to believe, think or do; we help them to discover their vision and complete their thoughts, and to decide what to do. Then we help them to develop the best way to do it, often providing tools to help, but we don't do it for them.

Affirmative Direction is a management philosophy and method, devised to direct a company and its personnel in favor of what is wanted, rather than in opposition to what is not wanted. Affirmative Direction improves effectiveness at every level of a company and improves performance in every major tangible and intangible category:


Socratic Inquiry is our proprietary instructional / tutoring / coaching method. It facilitates extremely high data absorption levels for our clients, so that they return to their functions ready to fully implement what has been presented.

Semantic Adjustment is a special, optional, service used to address personal internal misalignment and confusion, to terminate performance blocks.

Our clients should expect a minimum first-year cumulative improvement of 25%; 300% is probable under ideal conditions, with unlimited long-term possibilities. Results such as these have become so routine to us that we think a 10:1 return on the client's investment in Affirmative Direction is a minimal expectation.

However, there are factors outside our control, decided by the client alone, that have definite impacts on the quality of our results. We can lead the horse to water, even bring the water to the horse, but we cannot drink the water for the horse. If it does not drink, its thirst will not be quenched despite our best efforts.

Our success is exponentially proportional to both how high and how deeply into a company we get proactive participation.

Note that ¨in most cases, layoffs don't result in increased profits or productivity. Companies that follow layoffs with increased training budgets are twice as likely to show increased profits and productivity as firms that cut back on workers and training¨. (American Management Association, San Jose Mercury News, March 8, 1996: Investment in Training Called Wave of Future)

Why is independent counsel needed? One reason is that it accelerates the processes already in place. Another, darker, reason is that a socio-economic system's official schools provide only the knowledge and tools needed to function within that system; this perpetuates the status quo, including its inherent defects, and inhibits change except as sanctioned by the authorities within the schools. Those who want more must find it elsewhere.

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References are a useful sales tool, there is no denying that. And everyone seems to expect them, so there is heavy environmental pressure to provide them. However, there are a few issues that must be considered, particularly in our case.


We guarantee our clients the highest level of confidentiality in our industry. Accordingly, we do not publish the names of our clients. We do not ask our clients to serve us in this manner. We prefer that they originate their own referrals, and we appreciate it when they do. If we were to ask a client to serve as a reference, it would be subject to two conditions: the client must have volunteered to provide a reference prior to our request; and, the referral is for a single use per each request unless the client volunteers otherwise.


References are generally only as useful or valid as they represent a legitimate cross-section of the nature and scope of an organization's results, successes and failures. And really, who lists their failures as references? Moreover, a list of past clients can be misleading in that the buyer can't know without investigating that all of the references in the list are truly legitimate, or that they are all happily satisfied customers.


The most common aspect of prospects' requests for references is ¨someone comparable in our industry (or to our size)¨. Again, this request is consistent with the common business mindset. Our service is not industry-specific, however. We specialize in the applications of a philosophy of interpersonal relations. That makes our service universally applicable since every business is composed of and conducted by people.

Typical among our clients are:

Automobile sales and service
Building contractors
Civil engineering
Computers, retail and manufacturing
High-tech support contractors
Software development
Real estate & Property management
Public service organizations
Public utilities


The prospect's issue in asking for reverences is confidence. If not inclined to take our word for it, the prospect tends to seek confidence from external sources. That's understandable, but in light of the above, it may prove unreliable.

The best way to judge something is to examine it yourself. In our case, that means doing the introductory service, the Analysis & Strategy Consultation. Or the Basic Services Package , to get a full experience. We could make a healthy living just delivering these two services and pricing them higher, at closer to what they are really worth. We choose to use them as our samplers, however. Why? So potential clients can ¨take us for a test drive¨ before they buy anything major. There is one difference, though. This would only be similar to an automobile test drive if auto dealers were to let their prospects use demo cars for a month at operating and maintenance costs only and without obligation, and then bring them back without buying, no questions asked.

Our service must stand on its own at every stage. In fact, our contract is self-perpetuating on a quarterly basis at the clients' option. If it's worth it, they will pay.


We are often asked for references. As an extension of our confidentiality guarantee, we do not disclose our client list.

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Non-indoctrination Policy

Free will, and the unquestioned right of every individual to make personal choices, without duress from anyone, are to be respected absolutely and honored above all purposes whatsoever, whether a particular choice is informed or not.

Nothing in this policy is to be construed as requiring anyone to tolerate ineffective performance or unacceptable conduct. The purpose of this policy is to safeguard the individual's right to choose its own beliefs, not to protect irresponsible or offensive behavior.

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Email your comments on our web pages to

or contact us as follows

Home Office

P.O. Box 1000 Mountain View CA 94042
Fax: 650.964-2090

February 23 1998; December 17 1998; June 17 2005

Copyright 1995-98, by ASC/ Articulate Management, ntc.
All rights reserved.

Articulate Management (TM) ASC/ Articulate Management, ntc.

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