“And the greatest of these is…execution”

All communicators and the organizations they communicate for know there are five essential aspects to impactful communication: 1) conducting research and gathering factual knowledge about the topic at hand and the stakeholders they’re trying to reach; 2) developing the right strategies to achieve communications objectives; 3) aligning those strategies with appropriate tactics; 4) executing and delivering messages effectively and on time; and 5) monitoring results and making necessary adjustments to improve outcomes. Pretty simple, right?

At the risk of starting a battle of the minds or giving short shrift to the four aspects, we won’t be focused on today, a recent client crisis response and reputational challenge has reinforced for us that, to coin a phrase, “the greatest of these is execution”.  Clearly, of course, having the right messages aimed at the right targets is central to success.  However, no success is possible, even given the most wonderfully worded and potentially motivating messaging since the Gettysburg Address, if execution is flawed, delayed or ineffectively, or inefficiently executed.

This fact makes it critical that communicators really know their capabilities to execute before putting even one brilliant thought on paper. Often in crisis, every minute counts.  Tying up key people’s valuable time creating strategies and tactics that aren’t uniquely aligned with the organization’s internal existing or potential externally created communications platforms or communications philosophy is counter-productive and frustrating both to the communicators and the organization they serve. Doing so also does nothing to solve the problem at hand and may in fact aggravate the problem and the very stakeholders you’re trying to reach.

The lesson here is to always know what you’re capable of doing and not doing effectively and efficiently when the bell goes off and setting your sights on getting 100% maximum value out of whatever platforms are realistically at your disposal. To learn more about how BMF can help your organization plan for and manage reputational challenges and crisis, contact Greg Beuerman at gbeuerman@bmfcomms.com