By its very nature, strategic communication is intentional and productive. So, as with any other initiative vital to your business, distractions are its biggest enemy.
Here are a few tips I’ve learned throughout the years for filtering out the noise as a way to get down to the business of exchanging ideas and spreading a message:
1. Eliminate Distractions
Perhaps it isn’t possible to rid yourself of distractions completely. Still, you can certainly dial them down. Whether you are chatting with an employee in your office, talking on the phone with a customer or drafting an all-office memo, give communication the focus it deserves. Put the cell phone on vibrate and disable email notification dings. You might even consider unplugging completely so that there is no temptation to multitask or check your Facebook and Twitter account when you should be giving your full attention to the task at hand.
2. Cut to the Chase
Corporate speak is so commonplace that it has become a source of comedy: “We need to maximize potential synergies to achieve a paradigm shift that will move us toward comprehensively increasing our bottom line.” This turgid and largely useless rhetoric is easily spotted and usually met with frustration. Direct, concise communication is a breath of fresh air. It’s a more efficient way of getting your point across and can put the recipient at ease.
3. Anticipate Audience Needs