From their living rooms, camp and even a small bus in Ghana, Change Agents attended a virtual meeting on 8 June 2023 to learn about improving their communication skills and boosting their social media profile.
Two speakers – Erica Bagshaw of The Colin James Method and social media expert Daizy Maan – explained how effective communication plays a pivotal role in expressing ideas, building connections, and achieving and influencing desired outcomes.
Through stories and interactive games activities, the speakers provided specific steps people can take to improve their skills and even gave a little homework.
Erica, co-founder and CEO of The Colin James Method, explained how the co-founder and company namesake learned the art of communications.
“He is an introvert with a passion for making a difference for people. So, he had to learn to communicate in an engaging way rather than switch people off”, she explained. “He had to teach himself every element of engaging communications to have the impact he wanted to as an educator. He studied actors, politicians, and even dancers, to see what worked and what didn’t”.
Though it can take time to master these skills, Erica recommended three specific steps to take:
- Be relevant: She said we have a message we want to share, but we need to ensure it’s important to the people we are communicating with – “you have to be relevant versus expecting them to pay attention to you”.
- Be remembered: We all are busy with emails, meetings and projects. Make your message stand out so people remember it.
- Be repeated – We must ensure we deliver our message in a way that it’s “repeated with the essence of the message we want others to transmit”.
The Colin James Method is the content provider for the third module on Mastering Communication. Later this month, the Change Agents will begin working on these skills, focusing on three main areas:
- Know your audience
- Tailor your message
- Dynamic delivery
Boosting your profile
Daizy Maan, co-founder of the Australian South Asian Centre dedicated to empowering South Asian women in Australia, shared tips on networking and amplifying your message online.
In an interactive game where she asked various participants to pick a random number, Daizy demonstrated how others influence us. “You get anchored by people who go first”, she said, “whether you realise it or not. Have your own opinion and don’t be afraid to voice it”.
That provides an opportunity to be a person who influences others. Studies have shown people trust “people like them” on social media, as they find them more relatable.
“Social media is quick, controllable and enables you to have a wide reach,” she said. “Some people hesitate because they feel they are not intelligent or qualified or lack resources. Others may be afraid of judgement. The only way to get confidence is to go with it; the only way to get better is to write”.
Daizy offered tips to jumpstart the process:
- Take advice from people you trust; ignore the rest.
- Model your profile on brands that you like.
- Write the way you speak, which will make you more relatable.
She provided the Change Agents with homework designed to assist them (and anyone!) who wants to create or boost their online profile: Reach out to three people you’d like to collaborate with or someone who inspires you”.