How to Improve Your Comunicación Immediately.


Use pictures.


At 2 words, that would have been the shortest redanglespanish post ever. But it would come across a little smug.

I’m a visual person. I like pictures, images, drawings, and outlines to accompany the written word. I’m not unique in this way. Everyone likes images. Have you ever picked up a book, found there were pictures in it, and thought, “Aw, no way! Pictures? Who wants pictures?

I remember reading the story of Thor Heyerdahl and Kon-Tiki in the 4th grade. Apparently this Norwegian dude sailed across the Pacific on a raft like the crazily-bearded Tom Hanks (sans Wilson) in Cast Away.


At any rate, there were pictures throughout the book – maybe 20 of them in total. Thor wasting away on a raft smiling, Thor trying to spear a group of circling sharks, Thor trying to not die on a raft in the Pacific.

Thor "Pelo-dahl"


The only reason I remember this is because of the pictures.

In Jason Fried & David Heinemeier Hansson’s brilliant workplace bible, Rework, they start each short chapter with an illustration. The illustrations are witty & original – they significantly improved my reading experience.


Remember the family tree at the beginning of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo? Did anyone reading the book think to themselves, “A family tree? Ha! What foolish fool would need that? Stieg Larsson only references 109 Vangers in the book – how hard is it to keep them all straight?”



Even TV shows – collections of moving images – are including más images to improve comunicación with viewers. Check out HBO’s website for Game of Thrones: “Enter the world of Game of Thrones with official maps of the Seven Kingdoms and interactive family trees that capture the rich backgrounds of the characters and locations featured in the series.”


I don’t watch the show, but I may now. HBO recognized the confusion of seasons past as a barrier for new viewers. So, they used images to bring them up to speed.


So, how can you use pictures? My favorite new digital toy is Instagram. (For those of you Media Socialites, I realize this is sooo last year….). Brilliant in its simplicity.


Take pictures on your phone. Customize with any one of 16 filters. The filters often take seemingly normal photos and make them cool. Even if you are without photographic talent (like me, no tengo nada), Instagram will help you fool your friends. You can post them to Twitter or the Bookface or what-have-you. The updated photo is then saved on your phone as well.

Instagram works brilliantly for out-of-state grandmothers, but it is also a great collection point for the construction industry. Instead of writing notes to yourself or emailing yourself, snap a quick foto. The filters can accentuate different elements of the image, in many cases highlighting the very thing you want to discuss with the team later. Email the link to your site and tell your tradesmen is take a peek. Far more effective than emailing 22 3MB photos.

To kick it up a notch, invest $70 and buy an Olloclip. This is an incredible triple lens: an all-in-1 Wide-angle lens, a fish-eye lens, and a 10x lens that acts like a magnifying glass.

Olloclip... Buy it.


The unit is about the size of a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup (not sure what that comparison says about me…. Actually, yes. I do.) and snaps easily right on your iPhone. It’s brilliant. The fish eye lens helps a lot in cramped places on the jobsite and the wide angle gives you a panoramic effect – again great for capturing the trade activity in one area. The 10x lens is just cool.

Eye of Red Angle, Jr. + Olloclip + Instagram


Even when you think you don’t have to, use pictures.

Use pictures, improve comunicación.

Bradley Hartmann is founder and el presidente at Red Angle (, a Spanish language training firm focused on the construction industry. 

Categories: Jobsite Leadership

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