Putting comms on a diet

Continued from previous post . . . Eppler and Mingis have six RECOMMENDATIONS for reducing communication overload; and additionally they describe MECHANISMS that help comms get attention, enable quick comprehension and create info easy to remember and act upon.

The MECHANISMS fall into two categories: reducing and transforming.  Give them a try, and model your behavior to others (ask your team members to give them a try as well).

Mechanisms that REDUCE

Compress . . . limit e-mail to one topic per message; adjust intranet content to avoid scrolling; provide an executive summary with every report; at meetings, keep statements short and iterate contributions.

Aggregate . . . provide digests of group discussions via e-mail; provide a discussion group (newsgroup) instead of e-mail conversations; provide intranet site map/portal and tag clouds, if applicable; build reports with the main implication, key findings and underlying facts as a summary; pull together live summaries of meeting content using graphic facilitation (tools like lets-focus.com).

Sequence / bundle . . . e-mail digests that summarize; RSS feeds; fixed meeting dates and times.

Next post: mechanisms that TRANSFORM.  Then on to those recommendations.

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