While looking for something to present to an employee on standards of behaviour, one of my senior staff came upon one of the best pieces of communication I have seen. You can find the full article here https://www.wikihow.com/Behave-Professionally, but let’s talk about why I think it is so well done:
“Apologize when you make a mistake” Illustration on WikiHow
“Be honest with your coworkers and bosses” Illustration on WikiHow
- Breaking it down to three main areas makes it comprehendible: Being Polished & Prepared, Being Ethical at Work & Developing Career Related Skills. Three is a great number because it’s not daunting. There are 17 tips here but if you front someone with “17 tips on how to behave at work” you would immediately turn the potential reader off. I can remember 3 easily, so can you so we don’t feel we have to prepare ourselves for a great learning journey.
- Three areas are separate and distinct means it can be remembered easily. There is a clarity around the naming for them.
- The first sentence in each point delivers the key message – all you need to know. You can stop there and get the message if you wish to, or you can read on to gain greater clarity if you need to.
- Each point is finished with an example or a “For instance” that brings a practical clarity about what the point is saying.
- There are simple illustrations that support the key message. They aren’t trite or silly, they aren’t overly dramatic, and it shows relatable people in each with a consistent colour scheme throughout.
- There is a touch of humour to make it interesting (I think). Point 2.4 “Apologize when you make a mistake” has the illustration I have included at the top of this article. It’s a nice touch of whimsy.
- This makes reading the article interesting and fun. Don’t believe, me…google the subject yourself and see what else is out there!
This is just one example of WikiHow’s technique, and it is an awesome example of good communication: Short and to the point but effective.
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