Thursday, 13 January 2011


A fascinating item on Today today (I’ve apologised about being a Radio 4 listener before) about communications. The claim was that, contrary to an intuitive view, anything written in a font that is difficult to decipher is easier to remember. Have a listen here. I was particularly amused about the handwriting comment: anyone who knows my handwriting understands now that I’m trying to make things really memorable. OK, so you have to be able to decode it before you can remember it! I don’t think there are many font options for this blog so I’ll have to work hard on the content.

Talking about content: I found two wonderful examples of content-free communications, again on Today. We used to joke about the reports produced by the Young Enterprise companies which often contained sections like this: “When we were deciding on a product, we split up into groups and brainstormed ideas. Each group came back with the best 2 or 3 from the brainstorming and the whole company discussed them. We then chose three to work on further.” Great: but this is all process and contains no real information: What were the ideas from each brainstorming? Why were some others rejected? What were the three chosen to work on?

Listen to these two extracts and see if you can deduce what they are actually going to do. The first is the new Family Champion who is leading work to get failing families working - but what is she actually going to do with the families? What has she been doing for the last 20 years? The link is here.

The second is about police action on unsociable behaviour. You need to listen to the second part when Simon Edens is talking. What are the police going to do differently? Listen here.

Now for some good communications - if you didn’t hear Rosie on Countryfile last weekend or this afternoon, here’s the link. If it’s expired, I can send you a copy. Interestingly one of the locations chosen to discuss the wonders of the Chilterns was the John Hampden Memorial - which is just opposite us in Prestwood so the beautiful view they describe is over towards us at Little Hampden. And the reverse view - towards the Memorial - is often featured on this blog - here are some examples.

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