Plan or Improvise?

Are you a planner or a “cross that bridge when you come to it” person?

Like many of us, I have both tendencies. If I don’t have a plan in place, I worry. On the other hand, this communicator enjoys being spontaneous. I love a little wiggle room. My ENTP personality – based on the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® – has a reputation for challenging the status quo and uncovering the possibilities.

I counsel my clients to include a mixture of planning and spontaneity in their communications:

Start with Strategy

Connect your communications to the organization’s goals and decide what others need to understand about your brand. Identify what you hope to accomplish, who you want to reach and why, what you want to share and how you connect with them. Measure your impact.

Imagine the Worst

Assess your biggest risk factors and anything that could have a negative impact on your brand. Determine your stakeholders, key messaging, actions and damage control. Build a plan with effective contingencies for each potential crisis you envision. Be transparent, authentic and proactive.

Expect the Unexpected

Be ready to develop a strategy on the spot. My favorite example of spontaneous brilliance is the trending #ProudBoys. This week, actor and activist George Takei inspired a Twitter takeover of the far-right, Proud Boys’ hashtag with photos of happy LGBTQ couples.

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