What we communicate, whether professionally or personally, has power and influence. We can sway a decision, impart knowledge, or cause offence. We can boost self-esteem, correct misinformation, or motivate a course of action. All of these can be done just by using words and they can have positive, or negative, ramifications. I’ve been reflecting on the power of our words because of how this week has begun and ended.
After selling almost 11 million copies of her books in over 40 countries, Marie Kondo’s tidying methods, the KonMari method, has become a weirdly relaxing phenomenon. With her Netflix series now online, I’m a new addition to her audience and I’ve been captured by her soothing voice and her attention to detail. Although relaxing and therapeutic, there has been one cause for concern when it comes to her thoughts on my one true love: books.
If you’ve watched the latest (and, in my opinion, incredible) BBC programmes such as the Bodyguard, Killing Eve, or the eleventh Dr Who, you’ll have noticed a shift in the number of women stepping in to the spotlight roles. Instead of being love interests, shooting targets, secretaries or damsels in distress, these programmes, and many others, have placed women in to the leading roles. But criticism for the programmes ‘airbrushing reality’ from writer Daisy Goodwin has both angered and challenged me to reflect on whether there is a ‘right way’ to tackle representation.
On Twitter this week I saw (shared by @CF_Farrow) posters by Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust to promote emergency contraception from their sexual health clinic. I appreciate it’s not the jazziest of topics to communicate...
Let’s clarify from the very start; I’m not encouraging inappropriate behaviour! I don’t want to encourage us to kiss but to KISS - keep it simple stupid. An acronym made famous by the US Navy in the 1960’s and one that underlines what I feel all communicators have a duty to do.