“The first problem of communication is getting people’s attention.” – Chip Heath
We are inundated by emails, texts, and alerts. Most of what comes in my mailbox at home – yes, the mail from the U.S. Postal Service – doesn’t even make it past the trash can in the garage. The post cards, flyers, and advertisements don’t even get a peak. The newspaper and advertisements don’t even get out of the plastic bags . . . they go right in the trash. Honestly, none of it gets my attention. The plethora of emails selling things – DELETE. The push notifications from The Dispatch, ESPN, and Channel 10 . . . swipe away. Honestly, what grabs your attention?
For me it is a prior connection. For me, getting my attention means you have earned it. For me, I trust that it’s worth my time to read, watch, or listen to what you are sharing with me. Nevertheless, don’t abuse the fact that I’m giving you my attention. If you send too much or get greedy . . . you will go to the delete pile quickly.
As leaders, keep in mind what you do with communication. Understand the flood of information that people face. The biggest challenge is getting people to pay attention – you need to earn it!