Thankful

I’m lucky to work in internal communication. It’s great to know I can make a difference by helping employees understand what their organization is trying to achieve and know how they can contribute.

So it seems like an opportune moment to count my blessings and express thanks for 11 people, places and things that make my work life better:

My Davis & Company colleagues. Each member of our team is smart and accomplished, but when we work together we come up with better ideas and get much more accomplished. Teamwork!

IABC (International Association of Business Communicators) and PRSA (Public Relations Society of America) Employee Communications Section. Great networking opportunities and a treasure trove of inspirational resources.

Employee focus groups. So much of what I know about internal communication I learned from listening to employees. Focus groups allow employees to share great ideas about how to improve your program.

Microsoft Word reading level test. I’d like to thank the geek who built a reading level test in Word. I use it all the time, often to demonstrate to clients that a certain piece of content is way too complicated.

Web meeting technology. When used properly, a web meeting platform can enliven a dull conference call by sharing visuals and increasing participation.

Funny colleagues (and clients). When you’re under pressure, it’s easy to lose your sense of humor. But when someone makes a joke, everything snaps back into perspective.

Google. We communicators have to be instant experts on a wide range of topics. Search engines have made it possible to quickly ramp up to achieve at least a baseline of knowledge.

Time to think. As Mary-Chapin Carpenter sings, we need “pens that won’t run out of ink and cool quiet and time to think.” In this world of back-to-back-to-back meetings, I learned long ago to block my time so I can work on projects requiring concentration.

10,000 hours of writing practice. Early in my career, I had the invaluable experience of writing tons of content—from newspaper articles to press releases to speeches. As a result, today I write pretty good. 

Graphic designers. In today’s information-overloaded world, compelling visuals are essential to cut through the clutter. So it’s critical to work with talented designers.

Slipper sox. Sometimes my office gets cold. And everyone knows you can’t concentrate when your feet are freezing.

There’s my list. What are you thankful for?
 

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