Communicators face a variety of challenges in their jobs, but none is more universal than trying to find time to finish everything on the to-do list. Everybody has too much to do and is stressed as a result.

While it's true that getting everything done can be a challenge, we can't help but notice that sometimes communicators can be their own worst enemies—making choices that create more work than needs to be done. Here are some ideas that will not only save you time, but also help improve communication within your organization:

Write shorter articles

Rationale
It's a no brainer: Cutting your word count means less content to process. Besides, employees don't have time to read 700+ word articles anyway.

Tip
Use bullets, subheads, sidebars and call-outs to make articles even more scannable.


Create a more interactive format for town hall meetings

Rationale
How much time do you spend writing and editing your senior leader's 70-slide deck? Persuade leaders to do less Microsoft PowerPoint® and instead talk in simple, unscripted language with employees. (Employees will thank you for it.)

Tip
To get employees talking, have leaders ask them questions like, "What do you think our biggest challenge will be in the coming months?"


Trim back your online newsletter

Rationale
Instead of including two articles in each issue, just do one short one. Employees are too time-pressed to dedicate much time to reading.

Tip
Cut reading time more by including a summary next to each article that boils the whole thing down to one or two sentences.


Reuse, recycle content from other areas

Rationale
Have local communicators done any articles for their newsletter or web site that you can republish? In focus groups, employees repeatedly tell us that their company is too "siloed" and they don't know what's going on outside their division or unit.

Tip
Reach out to communicators throughout your company to see what they're doing. Create a network of communicators and help each other.

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