6 comms lessons from 2018


Well, it’s almost time to hang another year on the line as we hurtle towards 2019 with all the foreboding of a 1970s-era outlaw country music playlist.

This is always a time for reflection and introspection and the last 12 months give us plenty to think about, whether you believe we’re heading for the apocalypse or just starting out on the glorious ascension to the sunny uplands.

Either way 2018 has offered up plenty of lessons and looking back over the most popular posts on this blog some key themes do emerge.

#1 Internal comms

This year has seen a real resurgence in the importance of internal comms and the way we approach it in the public sector. There’s been lots of posts and discussion about this, but for me the key issues have been the blurring lines between internal and external as well as a greater understanding that staff are ‘the public’ as well. This turned out to be the most popular post of the year:

The importance of internal comms

#2 Strategic impact

Having a strategic impact and being present at the top table is a comms and PR perennial so it was really interesting to hear directly from an NHS chief executive on what he wanted and expected from his team:

Tips from a chief exec 

#3 Resilience

Coping with the stresses of work, life and everything else is moving rapidly up the agenda thanks to high profile work by bodies like the CIPR so understanding the impact of this on mental health is now being discussed more widely.

Resilience is a vital trait in the modern workplace but it’s also like a reservoir that can run dry if it isn’t regularly topped up. These posts may help:

Lessons from the stoics

How to restart your life

#4 The wisdom of 80’s road movies

Work in comms & like daft 80s films? Then read on:

Comms rules of the road

#5 Simplicity = sophistication

In an increasingly complex world I’m more and more drawn to simplicity. There’s a real beauty in boiling something down to its simplest form. A key task of communicators in the public sector is to make everything simpler, shorter and more human.

“Simplicity is the glory of expression,” Walt Whitman

The power of simple stories

lessons from a comms masterclass

The ultimate plan on a page

#6 Blogs

They are pretty simple and have been around for ages but they still form the bulk of my professional and personal reading. This post focused on how blogging has helped an NHS hospital engage with a range of publics

How blogging helped tell our story

Thanks for your time and for reading these posts in 2018.

*Picture credit “Christmas on ward 26” from Tyne and Wear Museum and archive

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