Rapido – a power tool for communication

Rapido – a power tool for communication

Recently, I was introduced to a new type of presentation format by my friend and fellow professional communicator Martha Muzychka.  She calls it ‘Rapido’.  I call it a power tool for communication. Rapido works because it is very strictly timed.  Each presenter gets...
Can I have a moment of your time?

Can I have a moment of your time?

Most executives are busy people.  They are often seen running (literally) from meeting to meeting. Those meetings are typically scheduled by an equally busy and often super savvy assistant who knows who to make time for and how urgent the meeting is. One of my former...
Me and my calendar

Me and my calendar

I am obsessed with my calendar because I have an extreme case of FOMO. When a notice arrives or a request comes in for me to attend something. My immediate reaction is to go to my calendar – I check whether I am available, put the date on the calendar and file the...
Have a great and productive workday.

Have a great and productive workday.

I work at home and live alone.  I have a lot of flexibility with my schedule.  It would be easy for me to stay up all night to get work done and play all day or to take an extended break to watch the afternoon soaps.  I don’t.  Why? Because when I lay my head on my...
Team management in a crisis

Team management in a crisis

Most of us who deal with crisis management are adrenalin junkies.  Nothing gets us more energized than pitching in to deal with the immediacy of the crisis. Team cohesiveness and management is critically important in a crisis.  The team will develop a bunker mentality...
A 6-minute crisis preparation exercise

A 6-minute crisis preparation exercise

Preparing for a crisis can feel like a daunting task.  But, what if I were to tell you that you can get a good head start in the time it takes to have a coffee break?  Would you give it a try? Since you decided to read more, I will take your answer as a “yes”.  Grab...
It’s time to thank your “masters”

It’s time to thank your “masters”

It is an honour for me to have been given the designation Master Communicator (MC) by my Canadian peers in the International Association of Business Communicators. Last year, I served as the chair of the selection committee and this year – my last for a bit – I have...
After the crisis

After the crisis

The number of reporters has dwindled.  The number of negative Tweets has decreased dramatically.  You have returned from the war room to your regular desk.  So, is the crisis over?  No!  The underlying issues are far from gone.  Now you face the legal battles and the...
Say it with feeling

Say it with feeling

When an organization is facing an issue or a crisis, emotions are running high. I’ve been there when the proverbial sh***t hits the fan.  Trust me there’s lots of emotion involved.  The leaders I have worked with generally turn their initial emotion into energy to...
Why we lie

Why we lie

I don’t subscribe to National Geographic although after reading a friend’s copy of the June 2017 issue, I may. The feature article is an in-depth treatise about lying and why we do it.  So, what were my key takeaways as a communicator? Lying is a very human thing to...
The velvet hammer

The velvet hammer

One of the skills I seem to have developed is writing “velvet hammer” prose.  By that I mean writing letters, announcements, greetings, directions, etc. that are simultaneously kind (the velvet) and direct (the hammer).  Lawyers love to use hammers.  In my experience,...
FAIL – my new favourite acronym

FAIL – my new favourite acronym

It may not be new to others but it was new to me today when I heard it. FAIL. It stands for the future always involves learning. Since the school year is drawing to a close for many this month, I thought I would share some valuable life lessons from my school days.  I...
Free speech

Free speech

Last month Ellen Degeneres celebrated the 20th anniversary of her coming out on national TV. It was a big deal then and deserves being marked as an important milestone.  On her anniversary show, she talked about the importance of being able to be her authentic self...
My top 10 tips for writing emails.

My top 10 tips for writing emails.

I spend a lot of time writing and responding to emails. According to many accounts, email is a dying medium.  For me, that jury is still out deliberating – they are probably with the paperless office jury.  So, while we await the verdict, here are my top 10 tips for...
Basically…

Basically…

There are words and phrases that irritate me when I hear them in speech.  Words like ah, uhm, eh, you know, so, whatever, fine – I could go on. But the one that has me ready to wretch is “basically”. When I listen to an interview, I often hear the interviewee...
Are corporate values important?

Are corporate values important?

Values are the deep-seated beliefs under which each of us conduct our daily lives. To the best of my knowledge, corporations began articulating their values back in the seventies.  In essence, the values of an organization should reflect their cultural norms and...
Do you know where your audience is?

Do you know where your audience is?

These days, communications people are almost always challenged to develop a social media strategy.  Sometimes, that’s all clients actually want.  I have a different take – I like a communications strategy that first and foremost identifies the “audience” for the...