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In the realm of organizational effectiveness, the call for improved communication with customers, employees, and stakeholders is a common refrain. Yet, we must question: Is communication the solution?

Though it plays a vital role in change management, relying solely on communication can lead the organization on a roller-coaster ride, ultimately arriving at the same starting point.

To foster real progress, let’s reframe the approach by posing a different question: “How do we enhance understanding

among our customers, employees, and stakeholders?” Shifting the focus from mere communication to genuine understanding is the catalyst for positive action.

It’s crucial to recognize that communication that merely sells or tells others has limited impact on the message receiver. Instead, we should aim to involve them in the process, empowering them to be part of the solution and take meaningful action. When crafting communications, keep in mind four key components:

  1.  Sell me – Present a new idea or challenge that captures interest.
  2.  Tell me – Share the future state sought.
  3.  Involve me – Encourage the audience to be part of creating a new reality.
  4.  Empower me – Activate the audience to take the next steps.

By incorporating these four components, we can assess the effectiveness of our communication efforts. How well does your communication score in terms of emphasizing these components? Does it have an emphasis on Sell and Tell?

To further evaluate communication efficacy, consider using the following rubric. Evaluate the communication on the following continuums:

Simplicity ————————————————————————— Complexity

Understandable ——————————————————————- Confusing

Reasonable ————————————————————————- Unreasonable

Executable ————————————————————————– Inexecutable

The nearer your communication aligns with the SURE model (Simple, Understandable, Reasonable, and Executable), the higher likelihood it will improve understanding and drive positive action.

By giving primacy to understanding over communication, we can unlock the true potential of our messages, fostering a more engaged and proactive response from our audience.

Let’s prioritize the power of understanding and embark on a journey of meaningful change.

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