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Don’t create your own noise

One of the six customer listening categories from our Strategic Assessments is communications.  One can’t ignore the critical importance of communicating information both internally and externally related to customer listening.  In communications planning, it’s common to hear things like “rise above the clutter” and “don’t get lost in all the noise.”  But did you ever consider that you might be creating your own noise, unwittingly?

William Zinsser is a renown author emphasizing word economy and he professes that ambiguity is noise.  So are redundancy, vagueness, acronyms, and jargon.  The list goes on… misuse of words, clutter, unnecessary adverbs (like successfully avoided), adjectives (ongoing process), and phrases (in a very real sense).  In customer listening, information is our sacred product and noise is the pollutant.

Noise pushes readers/audiences away – so carefully read what you’ve written, carefully rehearse what you plan to say – and watch for ways to stifle unintended noise in your communication.  The remaining message will travel to your audience as a pure signal, unencumbered by noise.

I came across a cool-sounding book – What Clients Love – that touches on this topic and it will be my next read.  I’ll share additional highlights in a future blog.  Have any of you read it yet?  If so, post a comment and let us know your thoughts.

Brad Linville
Principal, Sr. VP, Strategic Accounts
Walker Information

 

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