Home > News & Events > Key Learning #6: Communication Is Everyone's Panacea For Everything (Tom Peters)

Key Learning #6: Communication Is Everyone's Panacea For Everything (Tom Peters)

Imagine going to work and not being informed about things that impact you and your job . . . and now I hear you say "I don't have to imagine, that's what happens to me every day".

Monday 16 March 2015

As humans we rely on communication for our very existence.  A lack of communication in the workplace leads to assumptions, misunderstandings, conflicts, exclusion, poor performance, low productivity and much more. 

In a project environment it becomes the key to successfully managing team performance, stakeholder engagement, change, governance, risk as well as building trust and project leadership.   And yet so many project, program and portfolio managers and team members get it wrong. 

Effective project managers share information readily and keep team members and stakeholders fully informed. Communication within the project team is also essential.

The challenge comes in getting the amount, content and timing of information right.

In my experience, a project communications plan needs to include both the "operational" communication for the project i.e. the on-going, day-to-day communication within the team as well as the strategic communications to stakeholders.

In preparing communications there are some key elements to keep in mind: 

  • What needs to be communicated (and what doesn't)
  • Why is this important give people a reason to listen
  • Who is the audience what do they need / want to know, how can you best communicate with them, who should deliver the message
  • When should the message / information be communicated for maximum impact and benefit
  • Where will the message be delivered
  • How should the message be communicated what communication channels and methods will be most effective 

With many stakeholders it is difficult to customise communication to everyone so be sure to systematise your communications.  By this I mean having one repository for information from which you can easily provide reports, communiques or presentations without spending hours preparing them.  If possible, give stakeholders access to project data which they can view at anytime. 

Above all, keep things simple.  Complexity may look "smart" but becomes unwieldy to manage.  

The more we elaborate our means of communication, the less we communicate. (J B Priestley)

Want to improve your personal or project's communication? Contact Us to discuss our Intelligent Project Teams Program and watch your communication impact skyrocket.



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