Several years ago I participated in a panel discussion with Hillary Clinton and afterwards I had a few moments to talk with her. What impressed me was that she, unlike the countless other public figures I have met, kept her eyes focused directly on me the entire time we spoke. And when we ended our discussion, I watched her go from person to person doing the exact same thing.
When you speak with someone–a direct report, a peer, your spouse, or a family member–it is not the time to be multi-tasking. Keep your focus on that person. You’ll find that your communications will be better, briefer, more to the point, and you’ll have a greater positive impact.