Dave | Spoken Word Communications

The Continued Rise in Prominence of Risk Registers

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It is often said that out of crisis comes opportunity. For the advancement of organizational risk management systems, that time is now!

The issues we have witnessed in recent months around covid-19, social unrest and economic uncertainty have affected all markets and companies around the world and challenged our ways of living and working.

Many companies will already be using a risk management heat map, dashboard or register to identify business issues, determine mitigation measures, assign internal owners and monitor on-going progress. However, to what extent are communication risks included? Company research conducted by Deloitte gives a mixed picture and no doubt many still focus primarily on operational and financial risks.

As we move out of covid-19, and re-adjust to the new way of operating, all companies will need to consider:

– How well they performed as a business and communicated with their employees, customers, suppliers and other stakeholders throughout lockdown?

– What operational, financial and communication goals will need to be delivered in the next 6-12 to months to achieve company prosperity and maintain mutual trust with key stakeholders?

– Any additional measures that are required to bridge the performance gap and mitigate business risk from future pandemics or environmental, political and societal issues?

Risk registers are gaining prominence as an invaluable business tool but must be relevant, kept up-to-date and include communications as a strategic focus area if they are to help provide answers to the above. Managing communication risk underpins strong effective corporate governance, strengthens stakeholder engagement and protects brand reputation. Spoken Word is here to provide an independent assessment on identifying and mitigating any aspect of communications risk.

The time is now for a renewed focus on risk communication!

Spoken Word Experts Weigh In: What’s Next for 2020

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We find ourselves at the halfway point of a tumultuous year, with COVID-19, civil unrest, racial injustice and a sharp economic downturn as just a few of the challenges countries around the globe are facing. Spoken Word experts share what steps companies need to think about now to get ready for the second half of 2020.

“I think the biggest thing corporations will face this fall will be a great test in their abilities to be flexible.  For as long as we can remember, corporations have done an excellent job of instituting policies and procedures to guide their businesses.  As we’ve seen these past few months, those are now having to be rewritten on the fly. This is a huge challenge, which I equate to stopping a train once it’s rolling full speed down the tracks. It’s not an easy premise, but those that can adapt and be flexible in a timely manner will see success at a much greater level than those who can’t react in a timely manner.”

-Dave Scallan, Principal, Spoken Word Communications

“The 2020 Covid-19 pandemic has brought a profound global change in how society works, learns, and lives. I believe part of the reason why the massive protests in response to the recent cases of police brutality have gained such strength, is due to the anxiety and challenging time millions are facing. While companies have been vocal in supporting the Black Lives Matter movement, true change will only happen if actions are set in motion. Will companies incorporate professional development and/or recruitment programs designed to include more minorities? Will we see more members of boards, C-Suite executives, and executive leadership teams who look more like America?

The lock-down brought by the pandemic has also tested technology like never before. Undoubtedly, there will be another pandemic, natural disaster, or social unrest. When it happens, entities may want to question if they have supported their employees enough to perform their duties in a virtual world to deliver their services effectively.”

Claudia Deschamps, Senior Counselor

“In the next few months, what should be ‘business as usual’ planning for all organizations, is fast becoming ‘business unusual’, with any many leaders questioning what lies on the road ahead with covid-19, social unrest, cyber security, economic and political uncertainty – and the impact on employees and their well-being.

To mitigate risks and identify business opportunities, companies need to focus on those areas they can influence directly such as: reviewing their operating practices to ensure they are ethical and deliver value-for-money; monitoring their markets closely for any changes, and maintaining open dialogue with customers, suppliers and staff to strengthen mutual trust.”

-Clive Hawkins, Senior Associate

Public Speaking – love it or loathe it?

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Credit Management professionals across the world have been given top tips from Spoken Word on how to calm the nerves and become an effective public speaker.

Over the last four months, a series of training articles have been published in Credit Management, the magazine of the Chartered Institute of Credit Management and largest recognized professional body in the world for the credit management community. Its 8,000 members received insights from Spoken Word on key topics including: how to craft a powerful presentation, captivating audience interest from the start, and making presentations memorable.

Spoken Word Associate for UK & Europe, Clive Hawkins, said: “As we move out of the COVID-19 lockdown, all organizations will need to re-engage with their key stakeholders. Credit Management and collections professionals need to be confident public speakers and capable of delivering powerful presentations to influence opinion and help position their organization ahead of others, as this will be fundamental to future business success.”

The editor of Credit Management, Sean Feast, commented: “The insight from Spoken Word has been particularly well received at every level. Whether you are new to credit management, or an experienced professional, being able to capture and retain an audience’s attention is essential to relaying important information about yourself or your business. The advice provided will help our members learn new skills, or benchmark existing talents against best-practice.”

For more information on how your organization can benefit from Spoken Word’s training programs, contact:dave@spokenwordgroup.com.

Midstream company trusts Spoken Word to help prepare for an angry public

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Anger can drive individuals to take drastic, sometimes violent steps. Witness the civil unrest after the killing of George Floyd and the protests after the pandemic state shutdowns.
For oil and gas companies working on large infrastructure projects, several interactions with angry stakeholders may occur throughout the life of a project, and most likely on the front end of construction.
One midstream company approached Spoken Word Communications for its “Handling an Angry Public” Training, as they were anticipating holding several open houses for an upcoming project, and they wanted to be prepared for all types of stakeholders, including angry opposition.
Spoken Word delivered, training 20 project team members how to de-escalate angry citizens through both theoretical and real-world examples, using powerful videos to illustrate the safety risks of angry crowds.
Of course, no Spoken Word training is complete without the opportunity to role play, and the Angry Crowd training includes a whole spectrum of characters that helps prepare executives, managers, operators, and government affairs team members for anyone they may encounter at an open house or other public meeting.
“When people go through this training, it gives them a much broader perspective on how they can relate to others,” said Ralph DeSantis, Spoken Word Senior Counselor. “It’s not just about persuasion –the whole day is about making a real connection. You learn how to demonstrate that you are sympathetic to their concerns, and communicate that we understand and are listening.”
The client agreed, sharing that it was the best training they ever had. To schedule your in-person or virtual Angry Crowd Training today, please email dave@spokenwordgroup.com.

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