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Three Essentials for Communicating Your Vision to Stakeholders

Stakeholder Vision

It's not just in fairy tales that gifts can come with curses. Like Midas with his golden touch – who ends up turning his daughter into a metallic statue – leading researchers can possess great strengths that come with hidden dangers. One of those strengths, believe it or not, is their capacity for envisioning. 

That’s right: your ability to see a blazing path through the conventional to a breakthrough approach may be a liability if you cannot communicate your vision well. Leaders who are true v…

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The Four Channels of Entrepreneurial Influence You Must Master if You Want Your Research to Make an Impact Outside the Lab or Library

four channels of entrepreneurial influence

As a researcher, you’ve developed a sophisticated set of communication skills. You’ve mastered the art of sharing your findings with your peers through academic articles, posters, and conference presentations. You’ve probably written at least a couple of scholarship or grant applications. You may also have gained experience as a teacher, in which case you’ve learned how to convey complex information to novices in your field. And if you’ve spent any time on committee work, then you’ve likely been…

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It's Time for Social Purpose Organizations to Restore Corrupt Marketing-Speak to Its Noble Roots

time to restore corrupt marketing language (1)

Marketing-speak has a way of corrupting noble language.

Empathy, which should create a sense of solidarity and lessen pain, turns into the practice of pressing vulnerabilities until they hurt.

Empowerment, which should enable people to achieve their goals, becomes a certain style of marketing that creates the feeling—but not the results—of embracing a positive attitude.  

Advocacy, which should mean coming to the aid of someone who needs your help, describes the actions consumers take to prom…

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How to Make Your Startup Communications Antifragile

antifragile

As a coach, I often wish that I could tell clients how “easy” it is to craft persuasive communications that respect the integrity of complex ideas while winning over the audience. But the truth is that using language and visuals to convey thought is challenging work, even using AI as your helper.

Building any communication product—such as pitch deck, a cold email, a website, a one-pager, or a blog series—is like constructing any physical product, such a chair or a house. Try to cut corners, and…

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Awkward Cousins: Scholarship and Marketing as Related Disciplines

blog awkward cousins

Most scholars I know grimace when they think about promoting their ideas outside academia. Indeed, that used to be my reaction until I recognized that publishing articles in peer-reviewed journals is a lot like positioning a new product or service in the marketplace.

On the surface, scholarship and marketing seem like radically different activities—but only on the surface. Once you acknowledge, with author Daniel Pink, that selling ideas is a fundamentally human endeavor, then the similarities …

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More Than a Meme: The Real Meaning of "Only Connect!"

blog_more than a meme

“That which we call a rose / By any other name would smell as sweet,” wrote Shakespeare. So why, after three years of marketing my communication consulting services as “Clarity Studio” would I bother changing the brand name to “Clarity Connect”?

Because you—my clients, collaborators, and colleagues—showed me I should.

Over the past three years, as I’ve served clients across multiple industries, it’s become clearer and clearer that work I’m privileged to do goes beyond providing “creative servi…

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Why the Old English Concept of Kindness Holds the Key to Effective Business Communication

kindness quote

As fascinating as I find the scholarship on persuasion and consumer behavior, I’ve learned far more about psychology from novelists than from social scientists.

The great American writer Henry James stands out among these timeless mentors, and a quote from him sums up much of my personal theory of communication:

“Three things in human life are important. The first is to be kind. The second is to be kind. And the third is to be kind.”

In this statement, the simplicity of the language speaks vo…

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What Is It Like to Work With a Clarity Coach?

Blog Photos (5)

I happily rent my home now, but in a past life, I was both a homeowner and landlord. In those roles, my motto used to be, “If it’s broken, get a professional to fix it.”

I’m a writer and a teacher by trade, not a dry-waller or a plumber, and I don’t enjoy any task you might put into the category of “home repair.” So I don’t see why I should spend my precious time learning skills others have already developed and are delighted to put to lucrative use.

As an entrepreneur, I try to apply this sam…

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