Communication and information

- May 2019

By Stuart Richards, Senior Manager at Parbery Consulting

Recently, I took the opportunity to participate in a series of one-on-one training sessions with a professional work coach – an opportunity my employers provide to all staff. The purpose of these sessions was to identify any significant aspects of the consultancy package I deliver that could be improved.

As a result, I began thinking about two aspects of the consultant’s trade which, depending on how I have used them in the past, have either helped or hindered me in my work – and influenced my general interactions with others. These two aspects are information, and communication.

We are all aware of the power and importance of information and communication individually, but how often do we really consider the art of balancing the two. My interest in this topic stems from both personal and business experience, where I have observed the significance of both. I consider communication and information two sides of the same coin. Communication can be the downfall of information, or raise it to greatness depending on whether it is done effectively. Similarly, even perfect communication of incorrect or incomplete information can be a waste of time.

Both communication and information gathering come in a variety of forms and, like any learned skill, require years of practice. This is something we all know, but the point I wish to make is that getting the balance right is crucial. Over the years, I have been a party to various communication failures and successes, and I am conscious of the fact that how I have delivered my information has often overshadowed the information I was delivering.

Therefore, I want to offer a reminder to those in the consultancy world that effective communication is an ever-evolving skill, which can always be improved and requires constant attention. There’s plenty of information out there on the subject – there are whole industries devoted it – but in the end, it is ultimately up to you as an individual to consider not only what to communicate, but also how to communicate it.

Being able to effectively communicate accurate, relevant information is something professionals of all industries should aim for. Throughout history, the success or failure of numerous projects, business deals and even simple conversations has been determined in equal measure by the quality of the information as well as the effectiveness of its communication.

At Parbery, we are provided with opportunities to develop our strengths and manage our weaknesses. We endeavour to get the balance right when it comes to tying meaningful information in with effective communication, so we try and develop this skill wherever possible. There is always something to be improved.

The point that I hope to have conveyed is that communication and information are both extremely important. They play a part in almost every aspect of our lives, and depending on how well you balance the two, they can be your greatest strength or greatest weakness.