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Category: Stakeholder Communications

The Top 10 Truths of Social Media

Posted by on Monday, June 25, 2012 - 2 comments

There’s no question that social media is the darling of communications tactics at the moment, and with good reason. Social media gives communicators a direct, immediate and highly targeted way of engaging with our audiences. It’s a profound and permanent game changer. The thing I find fascinating about social media is that getting in the…

The Communicator as Researcher

Posted by on Friday, June 1, 2012 - no comments

It may seem odd to consider the proposition that as a communicator, you should be a researcher. After all, aren’t the researchers those folks in other parts of the building, or outside your organization altogether? Isn’t your job to communicate what those people come up with? Well, yes, of course it is. But no, it’s…

The Communicator as Knitter

Posted by on Friday, May 11, 2012 - no comments

As people whose business it is to communicate with impact and flair, we all have our favorite metaphors that we draw on repeatedly. Knitting, I must say, has never been one of mine. That said, I’ve found myself thinking that it’s the best way of describing one of the most important leadership functions that we…

Beware the “Communications Police”

Posted by on Tuesday, April 24, 2012 - no comments

No one likes a spoilsport—and we as communicators don’t want to be one. But we do run the risk of sometimes grating on the nerves of internal clients within our organizations by coming across as the “Communications Police”. This unfortunate phenomenon is one in which internal clients perceive that their communications officer is primarily in…

Get up in that crow’s nest and scan

Posted by on Thursday, January 5, 2012 - no comments

If you’re giving communications advice that always keeps in mind your organization’s major goals, you’re doing well. And if you’re giving that advice against the context of what’s going on outside your office walls, you’re doing much, much better. Developing skills in public environment analysis, and building knowledge of your own organization’s issue environment, can enhance…

Raising Expectations: Can You Deliver?

Posted by on Thursday, December 1, 2011 - no comments

Through several client engagements the last few weeks, I noticed a common trend – the importance of carefully considering how raising audience expectations inadvertently can cause significant damage to your communications efforts. Case in point: A client was working on a survey of its key stakeholders and wanted to explore opinions about several new initiatives…

Kicking Off to a Strong Start

Posted by on Thursday, November 17, 2011 - no comments

It’s no fun being far out to sea with a hole in your boat. And there are few worse moments in the life of a communicator than realizing that the big communications strategy you’ve been struggling with for weeks is foundering because some basic things weren’t clarified at the start. Part of the team thought…

Social Media in the Public Sector: Getting Comfortable with the Uncomfortable

Posted by on Wednesday, October 5, 2011 - no comments

Yesterday, I enjoyed the opportunity to present to the Conference Board of Canada’s Public Sector Social Media Conference. The session was co-hosted with Yves Desjardins-Siciliano who shared an insider, executive-level perspective on VIA Rail’s gutsy and extremely successful social media campaign led by its @VIA_Rail customer service presence on Twitter. Clearly, social media is a…

Top 5 Suggestions to Kick-Start Your Communications Career

Posted by on Wednesday, May 11, 2011 - no comments

I’m often asked about what core competencies are most important in building a career in communications. Here are my top five: Project management: To excel as a communicator, you have to be comfortable with complex projects with many moving parts, shifting and changing in order of priority in real time. Project management is the discipline…

What does audience have to do with it?

Posted by on Monday, April 18, 2011 - no comments

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…