Infographics are powerful communication devices when they’re done by professional visual communicators. When they’re done poorly, infographics become what Paul Hebert at Symbolist calls “long PowerPoint slides.”

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Comm Pro Tip: Skip the Semicolons

by Frank Roche on April 17, 2013

in Communication

As Kurt Vonnegut said, “Here is a lesson in creative writing. First rule: Do not use semicolons. They are transvestite hermaphrodites representing absolutely nothing. All they do is show you’ve been to college.”

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Communication Pro Tip: Design, then Edit Copy

by Frank Roche on April 16, 2013

in Communication

This is a rock-solid communication pro tip: design, then edit copy.

Graphic design and layout change the essence and emphasis of words. Let the writer write. Let the designer design. Then edit the copy. You’ll end up with a more impactful communication piece.

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Communication Pro Tip: Write Short

by Frank Roche on April 15, 2013

in Communication

Your younger employees will give you 10 seconds to get to the point. And if you send it in email, they won’t read it. They’re from the Text Generation.

Write short.

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Profits up; wages down; employment down.

Getting more for less might be a rational business strategy, but it doesn’t necessarily reconcile with employee engagement.

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Communication Pro Tip: Don’t Edit Your First Paragraph

April 11, 2013

Here’s a Communication Pro Tip: Don’t edit your first paragraph. Your first instinct when you write is to keep going back over your first paragraph. Don’t do it. It contains the essence of what you want to say. Once you’ve made multiple edits, that thread of your original idea is gone.

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Waiting for the Typewriter Repairman

April 10, 2013

I’m waiting for the typewriter repairman to make a house call. If I had a nickel for every time I typed that line…I’d have a nickel. The repairman is making a house call. Let that sink in for a minute. I’m going to write a novel on the machine he repairs. The working title is […]

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Communicating with Low-Information Employees

April 10, 2013

Your employees don’t pay attention. Your managers don’t pay attention. Your executives don’t pay attention. {Insert joke here: Your significant others don’t pay attention.} See what I did there? I separated information into small chunks. Then I repeated myself. It’s because people don’t pay attention. In the mass communication business there’s an entire area of […]

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Communicating with Low-Information Employees

April 10, 2013

Your employees don’t pay attention. Your managers don’t pay attention. Your executives don’t pay attention. {Insert joke here: Your significant others don’t pay attention.} See what I did there? I separated information into small chunks. Then I repeated myself. It’s because people don’t pay attention. In the mass communication business there’s an entire area of […]

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Open Enrollment Communication in 2013 Will Be a Rodeo

April 9, 2013

Hold onto your hat, this one’s gonna get bumpy. Your open enrollment communication for 2013 and 2014 is going to be like nothing your employees have ever seen. They’ll get ads for healthcare plans saying, “Pick me.” They’ll get official-looking papers with government seals talking about insurance exchanges. And they’ll get your open enrollment materials. […]

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