What do the best communicators do better than good ones?
Unless your goal is to test the limit of your spontaneity, you wouldn’t drive to the airport and purchase a ticket for the first available flight to anywhere. Your goal (destination) dictates your plan.
Great communicators take the time to plan and launch communication that is purposeful. At the simplest level, here are the four possible goals for communicating:
- Inform – “The office will be closing at 3:00 PM on July 3rd.” Or “We are evaluating new CRM tools to replace our current one.”
- Inspire – “I want to give a special thanks to Jim who helped make this project so successful.”
- Inquire – “I’m asking you to work overtime if it’s needed to meet this launch date.” Or “If you would like to volunteer, please contact me. “
- Influence – “As this graph shows, our current system is unreliable and costly to repair. I think it’s time to consider talking to vendors about a replacement.” Or “Wouldn’t it be great if we could tap into this market? Who’s with me?”
Armed with a clear purpose, great communicators craft messages that accomplish their intended goal. They anticipate how the audience will respond, and they create the content so the needs of the audience is addressed. Once that message has been launched, great communicators make sure it isn’t forgotten like a sock behind the dryer. They take every opportunity to reinforce and update those messages with memos, conversations, newsletters, blogs, tweets, electronic billboards, etc.
Want your listener or reader to understand your “call to action”?
Make sure consideration of your audience isn’t a one-time thing.