I grew up watching my share of “Sigmund and the Sea Monsters,” “H.R. Pufnstuf,” and “Super Friends” with its famous Justice League of America comprised of all my favorite superheroes.
I remember being mesmerized by their super powers, hoping some day that I, too, would discover mine. Little did I know that I would later find super powers we all can develop — courage and compassion — as a communications leader.
The good news — no phone booth, cape or golden lasso required. It’s plain and simple hard work that helps you get mastery. Practice, practice and more practice.
People often tell me that “much of sound communication is common sense.” Agreed in many cases. However, it’s not a common practice. When coupled with an over-confidence many leaders tend to have, it can be especially hard to shift focus to the real communications demands.
Still, most problems in business today lie in the absence of communication. I think we can all do with fewer problems. Also, as communicators ourselves, we need to be smarter consumers of communication, and not “buy” it when we encounter poor communicators or messaging during projects. Instead, we need to use our “x-ray” vision to scan and ultimately offer solutions. Remember on Saturday morning when you disliked a show badly enough to get up, move toward the TV, and actually turn the dial to change the channel? What if you were able to just as effectively change the channel when leaders or peers were poor communicators? Fortunately, that’s not a super power, but a skill.
I’ll tackle this issue and others at the 2010 Employee Communications Seminar “Leading Connections: Driving Internal Communications Through Effective Leadership.”
David Grossman, ABC, APR, Fellow PRSA, is one of the most sought after and well-traveled experts in internal and leadership communications, and president of the award-winning communication firm, The Grossman Group. He has worked with leaders across industries to use communication strategically to drive performance and accelerate business results, including at many Fortune 500 companies.
Follow David on Twitter @ThoughtPartner, or contact David via e-mail. You can learn more about The Grossman Group and its services on their Web site, including David’s new book, “You Can’t NOT Communicate: Proven Communication Solutions that Power the Fortune 100.” Read and/or download David’s free e-book “Five Steps to Thrive (Not Just Survive) in 2010” as well.
Join David in Chicago on April 13 for his leadership workshop, “You’re Already Doing It: What to Do When You Can’t NOT Communicate” at the 2010 Employee Communications Seminar.