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Adjust your Focus: Shifting from Activities to Results

One of the easiest ways you can immediately enhance your strategic value as a communicator is to make a shift in the way you think about your function. Communicators generally are in the business of producing “stuff” – their focus is on the very real day-to-day challenges of writing press releases, developing key messages or…

Top 10 Questions Every Communicator Should Have in their Arsenal

Here are the questions I recommend as arsenal for every strategic communicator heading into a tough meeting or assignment: What does success look like? Why this, why now? What are the project or corporate objectives? What are the communications objectives? How can effective communications help advance the project objective? What are the main risks/opportunities? Thinking…

Generating Results from Audience Segmentation

A simple way to add value to your audience segmentation efforts is to deliberately consider types of audience groups. While some audiences may be simply constructed as receivers of information, most often as communicators we impart a role to audience segments. For example, in an internal communications plan, we might identify Managers/Supervisors as an audience…

Planning Your Training & Capacity Building Activities

Most change requires training support to ensure effective implementation. A focused, comprehensive approach to training and development is a key component of supporting people through a change, providing a deeper learning experience which can be important in mitigating against risks. The Change Agent’s Toolkit provides a suite of tools that connects the phases pf transformation,…

Best Practices in Communications for Public Servants

The business of government has changed dramatically in recent years. So it’s no surprise that the transformation of government operations, coupled with an unprecedented rise in citizen expectations have created extraordinary demands on government communicators. Here’s a round up of the top 8 best practices in government communications to emerge – many originate from the…

An Open Letter to Change Leaders

Over the last few years, we have had the distinct honour and privilege of working with several leaders on driving organizational change. I often think of my role in helping clients move through change as that of a midwife – it’s not my baby, but I have a front row seat to the pain, blood…

A Manifesto for Strategic Communications

After working through the Results Map process with thousands of communicators across Canada, and around the world, there is one remarkably consistent trait that pops up in our community – a shared frustration that is absolutely universal to communicators whether their organization is big or small, public or private sector. It is the feeling of confinement….

Capacity vs. Capability: What’s the Difference?

In the often buzz-word intensive field of change management, the terms “capacity building” and “capability building” are often used interchangeably. That is unfortunate, because a more careful treatment of the terms can actually lead to some useful breakthroughs for organizations working through change. Let’s take a closer look. In the context of transformation, “capacity building”…

Taking Credit for your Contributions

Do you feel that it’s difficult to explain—and take credit for—the contribution that your communications efforts make to the overall success of your organization? Sometimes it’s hard for communicators to take credit for big picture outcomes such as the number of new members recruited, rate of client satisfaction, revenue, or influence leading to a regulatory…

A Mother’s Musings on Leading Change & Parenting Teens

The challenges I face in my work helping organizations lead change are remarkably similar to the challenges I face at home as the single mother of two teens. Here are a mother’s musings on the top 10 unlikely similarities between leading change and parenting teens: As George Bernard Shaw said so aptly, “the biggest problem…