The Great Communicator

22 02 2013

Scenario: Every Day
Subject: Every Individual
Topic: Seven Principles in Helping to Manage Your Story

Every day people engage in a process of trying to control and manage the messages that are being sent to others and perpetuated about their own lives and stories. Ronald Reagan was considered to be “the Great Communicator” for his ability to work with the media. He had seven rules that he followed in working with the media. These same principles can help to manage our own story and how it is presented to the public and handled by others.

 7 Principles

Plan ahead

Every day is full of activities and choices. Some of the activities or choices that we are going to engage in have the potential to yield negative or simply difficult situations. Each individual has the advantage in those situations to plan accordingly. This might mean taking extra precautions not to be in a particular circumstance. It also gives an individual the advantage of starting the truth before a reputation-tarnishing story starts.

Stay on the offensive

If the story is already given and pushed by a reliable source (namely you) than a false story, or less positive perspective to take hold.

Control the flow of information

By understanding who the parties are interested in the information and the most common flows of information and the easiest way for information to be spread. Because regular day-to-day activities are not generally considered newsworthy, some of the most common forms of information flow for that type of information is word-of-mouth, blogs, and of course, Facebook.

Limit reporters’ access to the president

While reporters are not necessarily a major concern for this type of information, there are “reporters” in our lives. These people are generally considered gossips or busy-bodies. When there is an important story that is going on in your life, limiting the number of gossips who have access to your life stories that can be destructive.

Talk about the issues you want to talk about

It’s your life. You have the same information channels to use, so promote the information you want to talk about. It is also important to not share information that you don’t want in the public.

Speak in one voice

BE CONSISTENT. It is important to share the same stories with friends, gossips, online, and with family members and others. It is important that wherever people turn for information, that it is the same.

Repeat the same message many times

Promote, promote, promote. You have control of the message, promote your side over and over. The message that is shared the most will be believed and promoted more by others than a less repeated story.

Each of these points has the potential to help promote and manage our public image and the promotion of our own story. The Great Presidential Communicator gained his reputation in part because of his use of these principles. If all these principles are applied throughout our lives we will be better able to control how we are viewed by the public and ultimately how we will be remembered after we are no longer around to tell our own story.

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