This is your captain speaking

Effective communications begin and end with your company’s senior executives

In the age of CEO activism, it’s no longer OK for leaders to play the behind-the-scenes, puppet-master role. Today’s executives need to lead from the front. They need to signal to both internal and external audiences that they are working hard to address key issues. If a leader can’t communicate their ideas well, their credibility – and that of their organisation – may be seriously damaged.

At Baxter Lawley, we work with executives from a wide range of industries – from aviation and finance, to paint resins, agriculture, mobility, and beyond – to help them communicate effectively. Here are some of our key insights:

  1. Speak your authentic truth.

First of all: enough of the lorem ipsum blah-blah-blah virtue signalling. Strong leaders don’t per se communicate what people want to hear – they communicate what they see as the truth. So don’t pay lip-service to the latest craze for its own sake. Think your own thoughts, find your own voice, speak your own truth.

  1. Engage millennials with purpose.

On the other hand, more and more people, particularly younger generations, want to know that their work contributes to something meaningful. It’s important, therefore, to use your voice as a leader to define your company’s place in an evolving world, and your purpose as an organisation. Always apply an outside-in perspective when communicating.

  1. Don’t just listen – respond.

Above all else, do you have what it takes to resolve conflicts and settle concerns? When it comes to following through, executive leaders need to ask the difficult questions, but they must also be empathetic. Because it’s all about finding the right balance; you can advocate your own opinion while still being aware of the other person’s position.

  1. Pitch it right.

Remember, you don’t just have to manage a business, you probably have to manage a range of people and personalities. Consider the way you speak to individual departments, particularly in terms of your tone and cadence. You’ll want to pitch differently to the media than to a group of engineers, for example.

  1. Leave jargon at the door.

There’s a time to be technical, but most of the time – it’s not that time. It’s important to be relatable and easy to understand, even when communicating internally for colleagues who understand the industry terms and are familiar with the topics you are addressing.

From speeches to thought leadership articles and panel briefings, good executive communication will take you and your organisation a long way. At Baxter Lawley, our team of native-English copywriters can help you craft the right messages in the right way. Get in touch today to discuss how we can support you.  

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By |May 7th, 2019|Tips & insights|Comments Off on This is your captain speaking

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