Here are four methods to help prepare, write, and communicate that I’ve been using successfully - they are foolproof!
To think about a structure - Why? What? How?
I use the Why? What? How? approach to make sure I understand why the content is needed, what I want to say and how to say it. For example, this article:
- why: because I think the four methods described here can be helpful for others
- what: share the methods and links to my “learning in public” website
- how: a blog post giving context on when and how to use the four methods
Brainstorming the search of a solution - TIPS method
In the last two weeks, I’ve been introduced to the TIPS method to help structure the creation of a new commercial solution. The technique is excellent to structure a presentation to show the proposed solutions.
Too often, smart people find an elegant solution then build the problem without checking if the problem is real and for whom. Selling a solution for a problem that does not really exist is a perfect way to fail. So here comes the TIPS method.
Follow the steps from the customer angle.
- First look for Trends; the facts, what you really know.
- Then move to Implications which are consequences that can be deduced from the facts. This can be a set of problems.
- The P stands for Possibilities what would help?
- Finally, look for Solutions. How to implement one or more possibilities.
Writing content - Cracker method
That is a technique that I struggle to apply consistently. The method is called the cracker method. It helps structure a document, a section, a paragraph. It works like this:
- Tell them what you are going to talk about
- Tell them
- Tell them what you talked about
more details in my second brain
Setting up the agenda - method 4 - POMO
We all live in a world of back-to-back meetings with different people and different topics. All require a context switch from the previous discussion to the new one. Nothing helps more to accelerate the context switch than an agenda. Yet having an agenda is rare. To lead from any chair and create a habit of including an agenda in all meetings I offer you the POMO method
How to set an agenda:
- P is for Purpose (of why): why are we having this meeting? The purpose is the end goal that this meeting is trying to achieve. Different meetings might be steps to achieve one purpose; in this case, you can use the same purpose for further meetings.
- O stands for Objective. The objective of the meeting. What is the aim of these specific meetings? How does it help achieve the purpose?
- M stands for method. How is the meeting organised? Is this a presentation, brainstorming, webinar?
- O is for Outcome. What is the deliverable of the meeting? It can be a list of actions, a decision, or a galvanised team.