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Publisher's Summary

From iconic actor and best-selling author Alan Alda, an indispensable guide to communicating better - based on his experience with acting, improv, science, and storytelling.

The beloved actor shares fascinating and powerful lessons from the science of communication and teaches listeners to improve the way they relate to others using improv games, storytelling, and their own innate mind-reading abilities. With his trademark humor and frankness, Alan Alda explains what makes the out-of-the-box techniques he developed after his years as the host of Scientific American Frontiers so effective. This book reveals what it means to be a true communicator and how we can communicate better in every aspect of our lives - with our friends, lovers, and families; with our doctors; in business settings; and beyond.

©2017 Alan Alda (P)2017 Random House Audio

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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Useful and pleasant

Useful and applicable especially in a business or workday life. Deceptively simple, yet valuable.
Alan Alda's narration is pure delight, familiar, funny, and fatherly - in a good way. I can feel his curiosity come through his voice.
Don't be fooled by the simplicity- listen and move forward with these recommendations in your own life.

9 of 9 people found this review helpful

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Best Audio Book Ever

It is amazing listening to Alda. His voice is great. His command of the topic of communications and his insights are fantastic. He's not reading the book. He is sharing knowledge and experience.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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Tha last three chapters

I know what my problem was. Since this is Allen Alda I of course expected to be laughing. That is not what this book is for. The last three chapters clarified a great many things for me. These are things I do right, do wrong, and could do better when communicating. Allen helps us better understand the craft of communication. This begins in appreciating that it is an essential craft. Perhaps a professional actor is a better medium to this task than any professor.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Insightful

Where does If I Understood You, Would I Have This Look on My Face? rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

In the top 5

What was one of the most memorable moments of If I Understood You, Would I Have This Look on My Face??

There were many, but I hate to put out spoiler alerts.

What does Alan Alda bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

A wealth of personal experiences and credibility.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

There were several moments that were moving...nearly one every chapter.

Any additional comments?

I had hoped to find a "cookbook" formula for how to become better at communicating. While this book did not meet that expectation, it did increase my understanding of both improving my communication skills by understanding what communication IS as well as what it ISN'T. If anything, it provoked more curiosity to examine the Stonybrook University to learn more about the science of communication to see if there IS a cookbook method to improving communication. I truly feel, after reading this book, that most of our issues aren't about right or wrong, but more about understanding and being understood. Highly recommend and hope there is a another one to follow this one!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Useable ideas for humans sharing & communicating

Alan shared anecdotes of skills he's learned in talking, listening & sharing ideas. He tells of missteps in explaining ideas to others and how the use of improvisation techniques help sometimes. I hope I can learn to better communicate ideas AND listen to others ideas by using some of these skills.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars

Useful from start to finish

I am a fan of Alan Alda, so I was ready to like this book anyway. His interest in all things scientific is well known, but tying theater and science together makes so much sense that it was a pleasure to listen to Alda's connections.
As a retired university lecturer in Speech and Business Communication, I found myself smiling and nodding throughout the book. Before I was halfway into it I wrote an email to the chair of my former department urging her to read and share IF I UNDERSTOOD YOU, WOULD I HAVE THIS LOOK ON MY FACE? I
By the way, like with many Audible listeners, seeing that the author is reading his/her own book is very often a red flag. Certainly, that is not an issue in this case.
I recommend this audio book to anyone wanting to improve their communication skills. The discussion on the importance of empathy is worth the price of the book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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S-mash-ing

Been a fan of Alan Aldas since the 70s. He never disappoints. This is a must have book for Anyone charged with communication with another. Will listen again this summer.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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An insightful look at communication

This book, or at the very least this audio book, is a very insightful discussion on the virtue of good communication. Alan Alda balances both his experience as an actor and his experience working with scientists to demonstrate why good communication is vital in this day and age, now more than ever. A definite must-listen for anyone who is going into business or journalism, as well as a must listen for anyone who is looking to better communicate with the people around them for the sake of improving their own lives. Speaking as someone who recently started to going to therapy, some of the insights from this book helped me to better communicate some of my anxieties and problems with my therapist, which has made treatment far more effective. It is a bit baffling how something we take for granted can become so powerful upon really taking time to think about it. As such, I highly recommend this book. As for the audio version, Alan Alda gives a very engaging reading. It is at once relaxing and charming, and you can tell that there is a genuine passion behind what he is saying. A great book to listen to when you are driving to work.

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I've learned something, how could I not give it 5

if you have learned something from a book, how could you not give it 5 stars? I feel like I can exercise the knowledge I take from this book into my day-to-day life.

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New outlook on communication

Some good information on how to view presenting and getting out of your own way, using improv and how he does it with his students. Alan walks you through his story on how he got to teaching others to become better presenters and communicators. Enjoyable to listen to and educational