Isn’t Everyone a Communicator?
Welcome to the first blog post on How to Communications. I thought it was fitting to talk about what we mean by communications and answer the question isn’t everyone a communicator?
Here is the definition for communications from Merriam-Webster dictionary plural in form but singular or plural in construction
- a : a technique for expressing ideas effectively (as in speech)
- b : the technology of the transmission of information (as by print or telecommunication)
If this is something we all do everyday aren’t we all communicators? Yes and no. When I use the term communicator on this website, I’m talking about someone who has studied and been trained in the effective use of communications or public relations tools and techniques. Many individuals who are working full time in public relations or corporate communications have studied at a post-secondary level and/or worked as a journalist.
However, almost all management and professional positions require elements of communications from report writing to presentation skills to media relations. While many of these individuals have not been trained as communications professionals, they are expected to be proficient communicators.
Is this fair? No. But thankfully you are never too old to learn a new skill.
Here are some basic points to help get you started in preparing communications materials.
- What are the three key points you want to get across?
- Who is your audience? Be as specific as possible.
- Prepare your communications materials to meet your audience’s needs, not yours.
- Focus your materials on the three key points.
- Avoid use of acronyms and jargon.
- Ask for feedback from someone who represents your audience.
Like any new skill, becoming a communicator takes time and practice. It’s important to put your ego aside, be prepared to make some mistakes and determine what are your strengths and weakness (ex. speaking, writing, video). And don’t underestimated the amount of preparation that goes into producing concise and relatable communications materials.