Most regulatory professionals do not have a background—or often any training at all—in communications. Yet they are called upon every day to be effective communicators. Whether it’s communicating with their peers on a regulatory team, colleagues in other areas within their organizations, upper management, regulators, researchers, contractors or others, regulatory pros need to be clear, establish credibility and influence people in different disciplines and at many different professional levels.
To help meet the need for communications training geared specifically toward regulatory professionals, RAPS’ Chicago Chapter will host a Business Communications for Regulatory Professionals workshop 11 September 2015 at the Hilton Orrington/Evanston and Conference Center in Evanston, IL. Leading the workshop will be Susan Symington, PCC, and Terry Hayes, partners with COPIA Coaching and Consulting.
“Building trust is essential for regulatory professionals, both within their companies/organizations as well as with the regulators,” says Symington. “Understanding how your communication can build or erode trust is so critical that you always have to pay attention to what you are saying or writing, and how it is being received.”
Symington and Hayes emphasize the importance of understanding and anticipating your intended audience’s perceptions—that includes understanding the effect of not just what you say, but also what you don not say. “When answers are not yet clear, it is better to communicate what you know and what you don’t know than to say nothing—in the absence of information, people will create their own answers and will tend to go to the ‘worst case,’” says Hayes.
Being an effective communicator has been cited as one of the most important skills to develop if you want to be a regulatory leader. But regardless of where you are in the company hierarchy, “most regulatory professionals have to be influential even when they do not have positions of power, and influence is based on communication,” says Symington
According to Symington, effective business communicators do the following four things:
- They understand the message they are conveying and the intended effect of their communications.
- They match their message to their audience.
- They keep things simple and direct.
- They listen as effectively as they talk.
During the Chicago workshop, attendees will learn how to understand various levels and types of communication, and how to recognize underlying assumptions, including their own, and they will practice making effective requests. Participants will come away with increased awareness of their own influence styles. They then will be able to assess what types of influence are most effective in their organizations and adapt their own influence styles as needed.
For more information or to register, visit the Business Communications for Regulatory Professionals workshop page.