The six Cs of communication

Jul 02nd

Nearly every client meeting at the moment touches on conversation that managers may find difficult – communicating downsizing programmes and redundancies, or just the need to manage general uncertainty and anxiety that can affect performance.

When emotions are involved, too many managers handle the conversation badly, or avoid it altogether.

We use a simple, effective tool for communicating high-concern messages, known as ‘The six Cs’. Of course there’s a skill to how you use them, but if you follow them in order, you can be sure you have at least touched all the bases:

  • Care – show empathy with the person/people receiving the message
  • Cut to the chase – say in a simple, clear sentence the news you have to communicate
  • Criteria – give the three main (evidence-based, not opinions) reasons why the decision has been made, or the criteria used to reach a decision
  • Concerns – acknowledge the concerns of the potential human or personal impact of your message
  • Confirm – repeat the headline message to re-state the facts, and add any helpful practical details such as next steps
  • Commitment – genuine personal commitment to provide support, keep people informed, and an organisational commitment to treat people fairly and well.   

This article is filed under: communication

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