Posts filed under Great Communicators

Great Communicators: Mahatma Ghandi

Beach Walk Insights - Volume 2, Issue 3 - Play time 2m 34s

This edition of Great Communicators is inspired by another piece of family history I discovered when rummaging around in my garage. This old, wooden chest belonged to my father and dates back to his service in the Royal Army Medical Corps towards the end of the Second World War Two.

This box reminds me of story Dad told me - being his view on a piece of world history.

Around 67 years ago my father was on a troop ship, returning to the UK from a tour of duty in the far east. They had just docked in Port Said, Egypt when news broke that Mahatma Ghandi had sadly been assassinated. Dad related how they weren't allowed ashore during that particular stop-over.

Ghandi demonstrated how one person with a strong, simple vision can galvanise an entire nation. Although your ambition for your business might not involve you in global politics, as it did Ghandi, it's just as important that you have a simple, clear vision that can be easily communicated. 


Posted on January 23, 2015 and filed under Great Communicators.

Great Communicators: Alistair Cooke

Beach Walk Insights - Volume 1, Issue 26 - Play time 2m 05s

Lots of people gathered around their radios every week to listen to Alistair Cooke's 'Letter from America'. The longest running radio show to date, for 58 years each was as articulate and as well scripted as the previous. Although on many different topics - like these videos - each fitted a common format.

Alistair Cooke started 'London Letter' when he lived in England. Initially it was a weekly broadcast for NBC. He moved to America in 1937 and established a relationship with the BBC overseas. A forerunner of 'Letter from America' was broadcast intermittently from 1938 until interrupted by the outbreak of World War Two. The programme we recognise as 'Letter from America' started post hostilities, and 2,869 episodes later, Cooke's 15 minute weekly broadcasts have left a lasting impression on many.  

Alistair Cooke's 'Letter from America' was remarkable in many ways, however, consistency was one of its hallmarks. Mark LeBlanc, is a fellow speaker and highly respected business colleague of mine, and he puts it like this:

"Consistency is the card that out-trumps every other card in the deck."

I'm sure you've heard, "start now, use what you have, do the best you can". Do that. Then do it again, and again, and again.

Enough said. 

Posted on December 5, 2014 and filed under Great Communicators.

Great Communicators: Leonard Cohen

Beach Walk Insights - Volume 1, Issue 18 - Play time 2m 35s 

Your ability to communicate will have played a large role in your success in life, in a similar way that it has played a crucial role throughout our history. In celebration of his 80th birthday, we’d like to call out Leonard Cohen as one of the world’s ace communicators – with a nod towards how his writing might help you in business.

While his music might be an acquired taste, his poetry probably has wider appeal. His ability to get a message, concept or emotion across in the most minimalist way makes his writing a joy to read. He demonstrates a skill few people possess.

This minimalist approach is something which isn't commonly seen in business. Too often business presentations, brochures or even websites bury their key messages in copious quantities of irrelevant material.

This dilution of messages has a negative impact on businesses. Clients neither know nor understand what’s on offer. If you carefully craft your message in a concentrated form, you will see an improved return on your time and effort.

In this ‘Great Communicators’ episode of Beach Walk Insights, Chris explores how Leonard Cohen’s minimalist approach is a perfect model for you in your business communications.


Your Action Plan

  •  Look at previous examples of your writing, seeking out words or phrases that don’t add value.
  • Prior to writing new material, spend time clarifying the objective and write to that objective using as few words as you can.  
Posted on October 10, 2014 and filed under BWI, Great Communicators.