By Jenica Foster
In a rapidly changing environment, communicators have learned to be agile and adapt to survive. Many consistently push to maintain their relevance in organizations. As strong as communicators are, there are a few situations that can derail the calm and cool façade.
- Metrics that don’t mean anything
By nature, communicators often have a deep-rooted fear and aversion to numbers, preferring to delve into the art of the written word or visual mediums. It generally takes twice the time and effort to correctly analyze a set of data. If the metrics being reported aren’t relevant to the original goal, you’re simply wasting time on frustrating information. In essence, you got all worked up for nothing.
- When competing interests halt progress
Department A and B are at odds over the execution plan. Both believe they are offering the better option, but what’s really happening is a push to fulfill their own interests, instead of considering what’s best for the target audience. Your three-month timeline just got pushed to six months because a conclusive decision could not be made. Can’t we just all get along?
- When your co-worker says, “Just wing it!”
Are we living in a world of chaos? By definition communicators are strategic planners, which takes time and thought to be successful. Without proper planning based on data, you risk sending the wrong message to employees, stakeholders, and the public. Can anyone say, #communicationfail?
- When you do a profile and receive corporate lingo
The intent behind a profile piece is to go beyond the organization into the personal thoughts of the individual. Boilerplate content is often inauthentic and devoid of emotion. Plus, it’s boring and people see right through it. Move onto Plan B as quickly as possible. Where’s the creativity? Put a personal touch on it; we are communicating human to human after all.
- Saying one thing and doing the other
One of the fastest ways to kill a communications campaign is engaging in hypocrisy. Donald Trump says it all. If the leaders of an organization don’t believe in the message, perhaps a different strategy should be constructed. All parties have a responsibility and obligation to embody the inherent values and subsequent messaging of an organization.
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