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Being BRIEF – How to Create an Action Plan – Step 6

Jan 5, 2016 | BRIEF

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Happy New Year!

I hope you had a wonderful time during the holiday season. Are you ready to make 2016 your best year yet?

Before the holidays, we shared with you some of the BRIEF principles to guide you in your journey to learn brevity.

Today we continue our quest to help you become brief in all your communications, as we look at why you should care and be passionate about your work, how to make it easier for your audience to listen and understand your message, and why you should tell a story instead of selling.

Being BRIEF – How to Create an Action Plan – Step 6

16th Principle: Nobody cares unless you do.

Remind yourself that if you’re not passionate, nobody else will be.

  • Truth: Some of the best joke tellers start snickering in the middle of their material.
  • Implication: You have to make a conscious decision to be all in.
  • Plan and practice:

Ask a friend or colleague about their favorite childhood memory, and notice how they get excited. Let them talk for as long as they want to.

Write a letter to the editor of a publication about a topic you’re passionate about. Map it first and keep it to less than 200 words. Get it published on the first attempt.

Pick up the phone and call someone that has made an impact on your career to thank him or her.

17th Principle: Make sure no assembly is required.

Make it easy for your audience to listen and understand your message by giving all the essential elements.

  • Truth: Just as nobody likes to assemble toys on Christmas Eve, people don’t want to exert energy to assemble random words and thoughts.
  • Implications: Provide the right level of detail to create the easiest possible consumption.
  • Plan and practice:

Make your 11th grade English teacher proud by using an outline for every communication. Start with updates, meetings, and important emails.

Try to maintain only level one details for a day, using level two details sparingly. Avoid level three details entirely.

Watch a talk show and note all level three details that guests include.

18th Principle: Tell versus sell.

While people hate being sold something, they do love stories.

  • Truth: Buyer’s remorse happens when you fear you were convinced to do something you didn’t at first understand.
  • Implication: Rediscover the elements of solid storytelling and tell a story whenever possible.
  • Plan and practice:

Develop three success stories that explain what you and your company do, and share one the next time someone asks about your job.

Ask someone to describe their best or worst selling experience. Listen actively, map it out, and share the stories with someone else later.

There you have it, three more principles for you to practice.

See you tomorrow with more BRIEF principles.

Want to know more about being brief? Check out The Brief Practitioner, an online course from The Brief Lab that teaches executives how to avoid information overload and become lean, effective leaders and communicators.




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