Practical workshops for experienced and novice managers with communication responsibilities

 Discover the Secrets for Planning and Scheduling Communication Activities that Win Audiences Over

  • How to create a communications plan that works in practice
  • How to create a practical schedule of activities that your team can implement

Proven techniques to help you develop a flexible framework for information flows between your team and the key people who can influence your project’s success

Only 12 places available per workshop
Next open workshop 23-24 November 2011


 In-house workshops delivered globally 
+44 (0)20 8771 4050

 Download brochure

This workshop is very practical and directly relevant to the issues and challenges you face in your current role

You will develop an easy-to-implement plan to keep key people up-to-date with what is happening in your project or programme.

Plus you will have a schedule of activities that you and your team can implement the moment you step back into your office. It will be easy to use, easy to explain and clearly linked to your project.

You will leave with at least six tangible tools you have developed that are tailored to your needs and issues, as well as your team’s capabilities.

There will be lots of time working with me one-on-one and in small groups to resolve any implementation issues and make sure your plan and schedule work for you.

This sorkshop is directly relevant to project managers. I’ll be sharing lots of tips, techniques and tools that professional communicators use on a daily basis. You won’t need theoretical knowledge or qualifications to use them as well.

Here are just some of the problems this workshop solves

“Planning is theoretical and takes too long, it doesn’t work in our situation”
Communications planning doesn’t have to be like this. During the workshop you’ll create a simple plan that is directly relevant to your project and quickly wins the support of senior executives and your sponsor.

“Having a plan is easy compared to getting everyone to follow it”
Your plan will be clear and easy to use. Your team members will understand what needs to be done, by whom, by when, how and why. Plus they won’t need expertise to be involved in delivering the communication activities.

“We don’t have budget or support to run communication activities”
During the workshop you’ll learn how to make the most of the resources you do have, both in your own team and in other parts of your organisation. We’ll be doing a bit of lateral thinking that will reveal pockets of money, spare time, knowledge and skills that you can tap into.

“Our challenge is to communicate the right things to the right people at the right time”
This is a universal issue for businesses. Its about understanding who your audiences are, what information they need to make decisions and then creating ways of getting that information to them when they need it. We’ll be sharing tried and tested techniques that work in practice during the workshop.

“Social media and networking have exploded in recent months. They’re time consuming but important”
Twitter, wikis, blogs, et al, are part of the communication toolkit you can use alongside websites, events, presentations and newsletters. We’ll be looking at how to make the most of them and how to produce them in as little time as possible.

“Plans always need to be adapted to unanticipated situations, such as delays”
You are right; plans should always be flexible not set in stone. They are frameworks to help you keep communication activities focused on what is important – audiences and project objectives. The simple plan you develop on this workshop provides just such a framework that you can adapt as and when you need to.

“Too often the communications plan is an after-thought”
You can begin communicating at any stage of a project, the secret is to start as soon as you recognise the need. During this workshop you will develop a comms plan for where you are in your project.

“Our project was born with one audience in mind, but has now evolved into a situation where there are two very diverse audiences”
This will not be an issue once you can tailor communication activities to the preferences of each audience. We’ll be covering how to create a positive experience for your readers, listeners and website visitors during this workshop.



What we’ll cover 9.30am-5pm each day

Day 1: Creating a Communications Plan that Works in Practice

Initial analysis
  • Two diagnostic processes to figure out where you are starting from
  • Four analytic models to decide where you want to go
  • Plotting the route map to get you there
  • Surfacing strategies to unearth risks so you can make it work
Understanding key audiences – sponsors, senior executives and end users
  • Brainstorming techniques to help you understand who they are and what they are concerned about
  • Discovering how much they know and how they feel
  • Segmenting them according to their impact on your project
  • Deciding how involved you want them to be, then making it happen
Clarifying communication objectives
  • What’s the bottom line – linking your project to revenues, market share and CSR
  • Funnelling down to the heart of the problem and identifying the best possible outcome
  •  Identifying what is most important – changing assets, processes, skills, attitudes, or values
  • How to create specific objectives that you can measure
Deciding what to communicate
  • Identifying the key messages you want to get across
  • Active listening skills to hear your audiences’ concerns
  • The three credibility factors that underlie successful messages
  • Using response hierarchy models to sequence messages
Creating a balanced portfolio of channels
  • Pros and cons of the 25 most used communication channels, including social media
  •  Six different ways to use these channels
  • The eight communication tools for everyday use
  • Guiding principles to help you use channels effectively
  • Creating a portfolio of channels bespoke to you

Day 2: Putting it all Together

Creating a practical schedule of activities your team can implement
  • Choosing activities you can deliver with the resouces you have
  • Meaningful and measurable objectives linked to project deliverables
  • Achievable timescales with inbuilt flexibility
  • Using impactful channels your audiences will pay attention to
  • Allocating responsibility for each stage of delivery
  • Measurement that demonstrates benefits to your organisation
Creating content
  • Developing credible content that change views and persuade people to act
  • How to use  a precis to structure what you want to say
  • Some golden rules for successful writing that are amazingly simple
  • A grammar and punctuation toolkit that will  bring your words to life
  • Stree-free tips for agreeing and clearing content quickly
Managing production activities
  • Design devices that grab attention and keep audiences interested
  • A step-by-step how-to on managing face to face events
  • User experience guidance to ensure websites are easy-to-use and useful
  • A print production primer for controlling costs and distribution



What's included

You will receive individual coaching and feedback during the day, as the workshop is limited to 12 delegates. This ensures that we can meet your individual needs.

Course manual

You'll take home an invaluable manual containing detailed background information, plus plenty of room for your own notes. Everything you learn will be at your fingertips long after the workshop ends.

Follow-up support

A follow-up tele-session after the workshop to help you work through issues implementing your communications plan and schedule of activities.

Ad-hoc email support from your workshop leader.

Two books

Critique of Communications Channels, a comprehensive overview of the 25 communication channels most popular with project managers.

Write for Your Reader, with this guide you can avoid the most common language, spelling, grammar and punctuation mistakes. Instead you will write more vividly and speak directly to your audiences.

Newsletter subscription

Monthly CommsAbilities ezine containing practical advice on turning projects and programmes around using communications.


Introducing your workshop leader

Jo Ann Sweeney BA FCIM(Dip) FCB Journalism(cert)

Jo Ann Sweeney is a communications consultant who helps project teams win the support of their sponsors, senior executives and end users. She is known for her ability to clearly communicate technical and complex information so audiences understand both the detail and relevance to themselves.

Jo Ann specialised in helping clients develop communication plans that they are able to implement with the resources they have. Her results-focused approach ensures communications achieve their objectives, meet audience expectations, make best use of resources and deliver value to reputation and the bottom line.

Projects have spanned skills development, new product launches, office relocations, redundancies and redeployment, political lobbying, technology rollouts and brand makeovers for a number of corporates including BT, O2, Federation of Small Businesses, London Councils and Transport for London.

She has more than 25 years experience and is a trained journalist, chartered marketer and fellow of the Chartered Institute of Marketing, fellow of the British Association of Communicators in Business and member of the Institute of Directors.

Dates, locations and fees

Open workshops

Open workshops are held in central London at four-star venues and include morning and afternoon refreshments as well as a two-course lunch.

Next open workshop 23-24 November 2011

The delegate rate is £994 + VAT per person

Early bird discount of 20 per cent for payment in full by 20 October 2011 – meaning you pay just £795.20 + VAT per person.


In-house workshops

In-house workshops are run at a venue of the client’s choice and can be delivered anywhere in the world.

Fees are dependent on number of delegates and location.

For more information contact Jo Ann Sweeney
 +44 (0)20 8771 4050

Download brochure

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