Tips to getting your messages right

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Tips to Getting your Messages RIGHT – the first time!

Take into consideration these tips and pointers when engaging in day to day communications, to ensure that you are saying what youneed others to understand.

1. Write all of your messages so that even your mom can understand them when reading them for the first time. Leave no room for misinterpretation orspeculation from your readers. Avoid using acronyms or technical terms.
2. Ask yourself, is it that people do not understand what I have to say or is it that I am not being clear with what I have tosay? It is YOU who is responsible to have others understand you.
3. Think about the consequences. What do you want to be the outcome for each of your messages?
4. Stop thinking aboutwhat WANT to say and focus on what your recipient NEEDS to hear. If you erase a word/phrase/sentence and the intent of your message does not change, you cam do without that piece.
5.Remember that you are and are expected to be the expert; not your audience. Never assume that your recipients must know what is obvious to you, or that they have the ‘big picture’ to understandyour messages.
6. Use the simplest of all grammatical structures: Subject + Verb + Predicate
7. Keep your audience in mind at all times when addressing them in writing or verbally. Themore you know about them, the easier it’ll be to respond to their needs in their terms.
8. Make your messages relevant to your audience and do not over communicate things that others do notneed to know. Think about ‘Why should they care?’
9. Put yourself in your audience’s shoes and try to feel and think what they are feeling and thinking about the issue at hand. Providereasons/ proof and not excuses for your actions or lack of them.
10. Be consistent. ‘Walk your talk’ and at all times be a reflection of what your organization is seeking to communicate.
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