One World. Many Voices. Infinite Possibilities.
The obvious is that which is never seen until someone expresses it simply. –Kahlil Gibran
Here are just a few examples of how I’ve helped others and can help you, too.
The Challenge: An international secretariat was at cross hairs with its South African delegation. The delegation was ready to publish a health education training manual, and representatives from the Secretariat wrote, called, and visited to express concern, but no agreement had been reached about certain publishing and legal language in the manual’s front pages.
The Solution: I traveled to South Africa, discussed the terms in three ways with delegates in an efficient round-table meeting. I first spoke in legal terms, then in publishing terms, and finally in multicultural terms. I asked some questions, and then listened. When I left the meeting an hour later, agreement had been reached about language, and the publication was in print shortly afterward, for use throughout sub-Saharan Africa.
The Challenge: An organization with name recognition the world over wanted to enhance, perhaps even transform, its image to be more modern and inviting.
The Solution: I worked with a team that performed extensive research and evaluation within the organization and outside, in the community. Research found that the public had a different view of what the organization was doing than the organization did. The mission was redirected accordingly, and the brand naturally fell into place. I was then instrumental in writing educational and awareness materials, as well as testimonials that reflected that brand. I also conducted training to ensure the brand’s dissemination.
The Challenge: A business was in front-page headlines for several weeks following a crisis, and the news wasn’t complimentary. The negative publicity had the potential to close the doors of one of the organization’s much-needed lifesaving services.
The Solution: I was on a communications managerial team of three that contained negative press by explaining the reasons behind unpopular but necessary management decisions, here and in other countries. The public eventually understood why the decisions were made, and public awareness resulted in a change in public opinion, a upsurge in donations. The public was kept informed of gradual changes in business practices, resulting in renewed trust and more attention to the organization’s positive attributes. If the public understands why and how, they may change their opinion, or at least be more forgiving. Negative news is still press, and what doesn’t destroy an organization makes it stronger. The news is daily, but an organization that does the right thing can last forever.
The Challenge: An organization’s annual report is mostly numbers, statistics, and jargon. They want to change it.
The Solution: I performed a gradual facelift on the publication, as the organization was large and bureaucratic, and not prone to rapid transformation. I began by giving the first annual report I wrote for them a tag line, “We’re all in this together.” Not only has the tag line stuck, it’s become a commonplace theme nationally since I produced this annual report in 2005. The next year, I suggested including profiles that were actually testimonials from people involved with the organization, told in the first person voice, to add a personal touch. This year’s annual report was awarded two gold Hermes Creative Awards from the Association of Marketing and Communication Professionals.
The Challenge: A young woman, trying to climb over racial boundaries, was put on probation.
The Solution: I re-trained (challenging cultural and organizational norms) this young woman, who eventually received outstanding performance ratings and went on to a managerial position in another part of the company.
Fostered Cross-cultural Teamwork
- Headed project to increase activities of an international humanitarian organization in 15 U.S. major market areas, linking people in the U.S. with overseas programs.
- Conceived and conducted series of workshops to expand communication and fund-raising skills for Red Cross/Red Crescent societies in southern and eastern Africa. Over 90 percent of participants rated the pilot workshop as useful or very useful.
Developed Business Communication Strategy and Solutions
- Shaped branding strategy for three start-up companies.
- Wrote dozens of speeches, scores of proposals, and countless publicity materials.
- Conceived and developed annual reports in print and virtual formats.
- Created web pages and advised on social media plans.
- Produced business television scripts for 10 broadcasts and anchored several of these programs.
- Spoke at numerous conferences on communication, international business, and global change issues.
Encouraged Global Cooperation
- Undertook missions to sub-Saharan Africa, the Balkans, and Western Europe to foster idea- sharing and cooperation.
- Led American Red Cross communication team work during the first Persian Gulf War. Results received outstanding ratings from head of task force.
- Successfully opened Montgomery County public school system’s Chinese immersion program to a county-wide lottery after three years of negotiation.
- Developed and conducted training on the Geneva Conventions.
- Led press and public to information and resources for The National Geographic Society.
- Wrote articles and gave presentations focused on building peace through grassroots education, local commerce, and mutual empathy. Articles have appeared in National Geographic and Kiplinger publications.