Proving the value of their function to an organization’s success is a key issue for communication executives. Her are five tips on how you do it.

LEADER'S TOOLBOX: Communication for Leaders

BI’s Centre for Corporate Communication has developed 5 tips that if followed will not only open the door to the executive suite it will place communication executives solidly at the table.  

The key to having influence in the strategic processes of your organization depends on the ability to exhibit a strategic orientation.  

Research shows that communication executives who are able to demonstrate they are able to think and act strategically are more likely to be invited to participate in meetings discussing organizational strategy very early in the process.

Furthermore they are more likely to have personal influence within the top management group and thus to have more support from top management. And lastly, and most importantly, when the communication executive is viewed as a strategic player, communication itself is perceived as important for business success.

Be regarded as strategic

In order to be regarded as strategic, executives need to be:

  • 1. Proactive (Future oriented): A person that is proactive and futures-oriented encourages the introduction of new structures, methods and guidelines that determine future priorities. They can also use tools that can aid in forecasting foreseeable changes to meet future challenges.
  • 2. Issues oriented: This person has extensive knowledge of issues and changes in the external environment and can help their organization adjust and adapt to them, even perhaps helping the organization lead the way in setting social agendas. 
  • 3. Creative and Innovative: This person is able to contribute with very original and inventive ideas.
  • 4. Highly knowledgeable about their organization: Everyone at this level of the organization must have extensive knowledge of important issues within the organization.
  • 5. A systems thinker:  A real asset is being able to rise above immediate problems or situations and see the broader problem areas / issues and their far-reaching consequences. 

A communication executive who masters these 5 areas helps their organizations by assisting leaders to be clear about where they are and providing insight about where they need to be in the future. This enables organizations to move in the right direction faster and with less effort, undeniably shaping the organization’s competitive advantage. 

Reference:

This article is published in Communication for Leaders 2014/2015 (Link to E-Magazine).
Communication for Leaders is a Science Communication Magazine published by Centre for Corporate Communication and Department of Communication and Culture at BI Norwegian Business School.

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