From giving clear communications to your team to being able to write an email that does not leave your investor guessing. Communicating clearly and succintly is important for founders at any stage of their business. But where do you start? We have collected five tips to help you craft clear communications no matter the situation, from writing tips to first principles. Have your own tips to share? Pop them in the comments below.
Go back to first principles
Whatever it is that you are trying to explain, from what your business does, to how you plan to take the next leap - you need to go back to first principles.
What are the facts? Who are you talking to? Why should they listen?
Imagine yourself in the shoes of the person you are trying to communicate with. Do they understand that jargon word? Do they need to know about your business background? Does that colourful joke, or dry witticism amuse them?
If you are going into an interview, then the above questions are especially important, and it might be best to physically note your answers down and remind yourself of them before you go in to see that journalist. If you find it challenging to keep these bits of information front of mind when being interviewed? Ask if you can be interviewed by email, allowing you time to hone responses, and allowing yourself to keep on message and keep clear.
This blog post by BizDojo @ GridAKL residents Directly is a how-to on making your writing, and in-fact any form of communication you have simpler, easier to engage with and more likely to convert. Essential reading for anyone that works in industries where jargon is rife, like technology, insurance or finances OR for those that like to over-explain.
Hone those writing skills - it is easier than you think
In this Webstock talk, Kate Kiefer Lee explains the art of conversational prose, simple communications and why everyone is a writer. A great starting point for people who want to communicate clearly, Kate asks people to consider the way they speak as a tool for to hone how they write. An excellent talk, this is a must watch for any founder.
Make sure the method of communication fits the goal
There are some simple facts to keep in mind when thinking about clear, concise communication. Detailed facts are best communicated in written form where people can digest and refer back to information. Meetings are best used to solve problems collaboratively, or to get a team across what is happening within a business - but are best held with an agenda, allowing the meeting to stay on course and full of focus. Slack is great for immediacy, whilst a phone-call can be a good way to deliver quick insights in a friendly more personal way.
Before you start drafting that email or pulling together notes for a meeting think about who is in the room, what you are communicating, and what you want the outcome to be. Then, find a channel of communication that fits that particular situation best.