This post, 6 steps to communicating about communication, began when a friend asked for my advice on a panel discussion she is chairing and organizing. The topic of her panel is communication. The discussion is part of a regional seminar for a large not-for-profit organization with many participation layers. I thought about it and offered her the following points to discuss with her panel before outlining the discussion.
6 Steps to Communicating about Communication
1. What’s the Purpose?
Is it to improve communication in general or in specific areas? Is it to introduce new topics, improve one segment of the communication chain, or clarification?
2. Who’s Involved?
Does the topic fit the audience? Is it what they need to hear? What’s the best way to deliver the message? Should the audience be reduced to sub-groups or increased in size?
3. What Are the Panels Expectations?
What’s the takeaway? What do you want people to understand, learn, and embrace? How would you measure the success of the discussion?
4. How Will the Message Be Shared?
There are so many ways to share a message today it’s easy for it to get lost. One of the most common outcomes of verbal communication is misunderstanding, so should information be printed as well? Should it be available via email, text, social media, video, PowerPoint, or?
5. How Will You Follow Up?
One lecture is seldom enough to influence most listeners. How will you follow up your message, with whom, how often, and by what media?
6. What Will Your CTA (Call to Action) Be?
A presentation without actions tied to it is little more than words. What actions will you ask your audience to take post-discussion?
What’s Your Recipe?
I’m not sure all six points fit my friend’s needs or the organization’s purposes. If you’re reading this, it may be the same for you and your organization. Pick and choose the questions that best focus your team on improving communication. Build your communication recipe. “We’ll have a dash of number three with sides of five and six, please.”
I know this: the answer to improving communication in your organization starts with beginning a conversation. What points work for you? What points have I missed? Are we communicating effectively?
How Can I Help You?
I like to help people and organizations, but I have three criteria I consider before taking an assignment – I believe in what the organization stands for, I know I can help, and it looks like fun. If you have any questions, Contact Me.
So, does your business have a management training plan? Because if not, many organizations, large and small, use my book, The New Manager’s Workbook a crash course in effective management, as the basis for their leadership development program. Check it out. It might help you stop putting off what you want to do.
If you enjoyed this post, you might also like, Why Communication in the Workplace Sucks