At the outset of Leadership Communication Days every year, I declare the meeting off the record, and get everyone to nod their heads in agreement with the mantra, “What happens at Leadership Communication Days, stays.”
During the course of the two days of conversations, participants occasionally signal that they’re sharing especially sensitive information, usually with a Get Smart reference to a “cone of silence.” That’s when everyone leans a forward a little more.
So I can’t very well tell you what participants learned Leadership Communication Days, can I? No, I can only tell you what you didn’t learn, by not going. Here’s an even eight:
8. You didn’t learn why executive communicators must maintain a strong identity of “outsider,” especially if they work in companies with strong cultures.
7. You didn’t learn how to find the 40 smartest people in your organization and supercharge your exec comms operation by getting them blogging for the company.
6. You don’t understand when or why you should, “Repurpose the shit out of it and then add one new nugget.”
5. You don’t know why imagery is out and storytelling is in …
4. … or why panels are out and fireside chats are in.
3. You don’t know what it means for an executive communication program to express “a worldview, an industry view and a company view.”
2. You don’t know why executive communicators must create the speaking platforms they want to see in the world.
1. And you don’t know “fauxthenticity”—what it is, or why it is so “flawsome.”
Of course, it’s not that you can’t do your job without knowing all that stuff. It’s just that you can’t do your job as well—or with as much pleasure—as those of us who do.
See you next year, then?