My communication resolutions for 2017

browningyork Browning York News, Communication lessons, General communication, Leadership communication, Story-telling, Training

Happy New Year!

As a general rule, I don’t tend to make new year’s resolutions. Like a lot of targets, they seem to me to often be setting yourself up to fail. They’re usually full of things I think I should be stopping or doing more of and not the things that I really want to do.

But this year I’ve decided that a few comms-related resolutions are actually worth making. During 2016 I got to work with some great new organisations as well as continuing to support longer-term clients. I learnt a lot during the year and I’d like to keep that momentum going.

So I’m making 3 resolutions to build on where I’d got to and carry on progressing 2017:
1. Explore ways to engage more leaders in the business benefits of improved internal communication
Internal communication professionals know that our discipline is not simply the ‘fluffy stuff’, but all too often I see IC teams who have been put in that box. This year I want to demonstrate more often and more clearly that getting this right can have a huge impact on the business of organisations. It seems to me that leadership teams need to be paying as much attention to their employees’ experience of the organisation as they are to supporter, student or customer experience. After all, employees who are engaged and have the information they need to do their jobs well will be able to deliver a high-level service to those other groups.

2. Develop my own and others’ skills in communication
In 2016 I was lucky enough to run several communication training courses, mentor an inexperienced IC Manager and attend a few school careers fairs to speak to the next generation of potential internal communicators. This is something that I really enjoy and so I want to do more of it. By helping others to discover their own skills and potential as communicators, I’m also learning a lot about myself. In a fast-changing world, it is important that I keep my own skills fresh and up-to-date, so I’ll be looking out for opportunities to do that too.

3. Seek out stories and tell them in engaging ways
If 2016 demonstrated anything, it is that people respond to well-told stories. Well-told stories aren’t necessarily the ones with the slickest words or the most facts, they are the ones that people react to emotionally. When people feel something, they take action. This year I want to help my clients find the emotional core of their stories and tell those stories to their employees. This can be a challenge internally, since operational and process communications in particular can be very dull, but every communication should have some kind of meaningful connection to staff and their work.

What resolutions are you making – if any – this year?

If you would like help in talking to your leaders, brushing up your skills or telling your stories, please get in touch for a chat about how I could help you in 2017.

Until next time
Sarah