So often, I think we over-complicate what should be very simple – communicating! As I was pondering the different ways to connect to stakeholders, I began to reflect upon the simple, yet effective ways others communicate with me.
Each week, my principal communicates to the entire staff on Sunday afternoon or evenings. Her mode of communication has affectionately been dubbed “Tiger Tales” since my campus is the home of the tigers. There’s nothing fancy about her weekly newsletter. As a matter of fact, it looks like a very simple template available through Microsoft Word. It has a plain banner at the top with the publication title and the lefthand column is used to showcase activities for the upcoming week, including athletic events, club meetings and staff birthdays. The body of the newsletter is made up of whatever reflective thoughts our principal chooses to share. Much of her inspiration comes from observation of staff and students or ideas from personal development books she is challenging us to think about or put into practice. The heart of the message, the most important part of the newsletter, is the personal connection she consistently communicates to our staff. Taking the time on a weekly basis to share her thoughts has made a deep impact on staff morale.
Even my son’s first grade teacher communicates effectively on a weekly basis. I know at the end of each week, I will receive an email with a newsletter for the upcoming week at school. The newsletter gives me an easy at-a-glance look at what skills my son will focus on and includes reminders of upcoming dates, classroom needs, etc. She also utilizes Remind 101, a great tool that pops up with reminders about class, assignments, or whatever else needs to be communicated.
Teachers on my campus have also used Remind 101 to send out details to a large group of students at once. It’s easy to give updates, let students know about a meeting time and location or even give a link to order t-shirts and provide order information.
As far as student groups go, I’ve also used a simple newsletter template to give seniors information at our monthly meetings. When delivering information to a large body of students at once, it is easy for them to miss something or forget. To combat that, a simple handout gives a great resource to reference.
No matter how you choose to communicate or what group you need to give information to, let simple tech tools help you transform the task.