Reinventing the communications landscape

In this rapidly-changing environment, everything has been volatile and highly dynamic for almost all businesses. Businesses have been constantly learning, adapting, reshaping, and getting their act together for more optimised performance. Changes in the business environment often bring drastic challenges too for businesses. As they affect the businesses in their entirety, the most important challenge becomes the communication side as it has to deal with all constituencies in terms of managing, building, and sustaining the perception most appropriately for the company.

What has been the traditional way to assess the audiences’ requirements, address them through communications, messaging, tools, techniques may become partially or in some cases even fully redundant with the change in the internal or external environment. Audiences’ way to receive your messages, interpret them, form, or alter perceptions, and make changes to their behaviours, may be completely new and never before posing challenges to the brand communicators.

For instance, many internal communications could happen through memos, notes, emails, newsletters, etc. And most of the brand communicators would be comfortable in doing things in their own pre-defined, pre-set ways, which they have been following historically for years. However, in the new-age environment, their audience is never the same as new people would have joined, new technologies would have been implemented, and new processes would have been set.

Corporate communications people are one bunch of professionals, in any organisation who need to take cognizance of this gradual, systematic change and rapidly adapt, transform, upgrade, improve, and constantly learn to ensure the entire set of audiences can be tackled as desired in this rapidly transforming business environment.

Economics, psychology, and management, all play a significant role in the lives of corporate communications professionals. An insight into these issues from an organisation’s perspective is most crucial and corporate communicators are most vulnerable if they do not upskill themselves constantly. They need to have a great understanding of these issues, as they will enable them to manage dynamic situations more effectively.

The first step towards this is identifying the problem areas and measuring the gaps, thereafter an assessment of skill up-gradation requirements and finally working towards fulfilling these requirements. Imagine a situation, where a lot of meetings in the companies are just about sharing PowerPoint presentations, data, graphs, charts, and a lot of pointers to glance through. And often, it may be found that several employees are only getting bored with this and not involved in receiving the communication in its totality. What would you do in such a situation? Can there be an alternative?

So, breaking free from the traditional methods can sometimes be a creative solution to deliver communications messages appropriately. Now, imagine a scenario where the same communication is done through storytelling and narration, involving constant feedback of the participants, it could probably prove to be more meaningful in specific situations than the traditional ways. Corporate communications professionals need to assess this, understand this, and facilitate implementation as needed in specific situations.

Similarly, while dealing with external audiences, it may manifest in different ways. Traditionally, communication has been one-way delivery, but our current times of business environment require and insist upon engagement of the highest order with the audience. Engagement, conversation, participation have become keys to communication with all your audiences, in today’s business environment. The use of research inputs extensively and other novel ways to reach out to your audience has become the name of the game, now.

It’s time to reinvent what you communicate, how you communicate, when you communicate in a scenario of constantly growing, developing, and improving your communications skillsets to outperform your audiences’ requirements.

The views and opinions published here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the publisher.

Praveen Nagda
Praveen Nagda is the CEO of Peregrine Public Relations, a full-service corporate communications and public relations consultancy firm delivering a pan-India reach to its clients. He also heads White Coffee, an independent events & celebrity engagement company.

Praveen has been closely associated with many national and international events related to cinema for children, art and culture. He has a well-rounded experience that cuts across all key sectors of PR & Corporate Communications.

He started his career with URJA Communications, an advertising agency specialising in technology brands, where he was instrumental in developing the PR division. Post this, he had a stint with Horizons Porter Novelli, a global public relations consultancy. Thereafter, he was heading the IT & Telecom division at Clea PR, a leading Indian public relations and communications company followed by a fairly long stint with Omnicom Group agencies viz. TBWA\India and Brodeur India.

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