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Appropriate Communication October 14, 2009

Posted by Jason in Daily PM.
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Did you get that email I sent?  Voicemail?  Text message?

With so many options for communicating your message – whatever that message may be – how do you decide which mode is appropriate?  If snail mail, email, text messages, and Twitter are all classified as written media, why are they so different?

How do you know if your message is reaching the right people and is captivating them into action?  Whether internal messages, external marketing, or something in between, it is often helpful to categorize your communications by their “directionality”.  Is it predominantly one-way (white papers, articles, reports) or two-way (email, instant messaging)?

For internal project communications, it is almost always an exchange of information, and rarely will there not be a follow-up of some sort.  Sometimes email will follow a phone call which follows a meeting.  Whatever the form or sequence, the project will suffer if these threads aren’t managed effectively.  Software is helpful, but only goes so far.

One way communication (mostly an oxymoron) is intended to get a message out to a larger number of people.  There may be a “call to action” or there may be opportunities for follow-up, but the message itself does not provide a direct, immediate means of doing so.

Find out what methods work best for your staff, your corporate managers, the clients, and any others you regularly contact.  If your chosen method isn’t received, you’re just whispering into the wind.

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