Control the microphone and you control the message.
One thing many business communicators fail to account for when creating their message is what will happen to it when it hits the light of day, when they encounter the real world of noise, possible audience misinterpretation, or even open opposition. That’s when the communicator needs to take control.
Controlling your message means that you make sure the words you use are not misconstrued, misinterpreted, or taken out of context. Controlling the medium ensures that you’re using the most effective media forum to reach the audience you want when you want in the way you want. Controlling the opposition means you take every precaution to protect your message from being shouted down, interfered with, or even, as we’ve seen lately, censored.
Like it or not, the fundamental means by which our current Commander-in-Chief has chosen to communicate–Twitter and mass rallies–have been a large reason for the success of his political career and dissemination of his policy messages. He defends these choices by saying it’s the most effective way to get his message to his base in a manner that is immediate and untarnished by an increasingly contentious press. In other words, to control it. Of course, it drives his detractors crazy, who say he should use more traditional and statesmanlike means of communicating with “the people.”
We’ll see how effective his efforts are from a political perspective, but from a communication standpoint, controlling as much of the message, medium, and opposition as you can is the best way to ensure its eventual success.
Our new Leadership Communication Essentials Workshop is filled with excellent advice on how to choose your words and thoughts in the best manner possible. It also gives helpful recommendation of gaining control of the medium in which you choose to deliver your message. You can also read these blogs on our website to gain more insight into controlling the microphone–and the message: Effective Business Presentations: Taking Stock in How to Take the Stage and 6 Ways to Communicate as a Leader.