The CDC announcement that vaccinated folks do not have to wear a mask indoors or outdoors brings immense relief and joy, but is confusing, no? Company policies are adjusting as rapidly as the country is reopening. Here are 3 ways to make your company messages clearer and more inclusive:
1) Use plain language
The difference between having to communicate something 1 time versus 8 times can come down to grammar. Use "simple tenses" so that you are not overcomplicating your message.
❌ Team Austin - Please ensure that you are adhering to our mask policy until it has been stated otherwise. Customers should be wearing masks as should you.
✅ Team Austin - Please continue to follow our mask policy until further notice. Customers and employees must still wear masks indoors.
2) Keep sentences between 5-10 words
Include only one main idea per sentence to better communicate your intent. When you find yourself using "and", "but", "because", your sentence is probably getting too long. Break it up into 2 sentences.
❌ Hi BOH team - You're doing a great job on your Opus training and so I'm messaging just to let you know that we are adding a new skill path to train prep cooks to be line cooks.
✅ Hi BOH team - Great job on your Opus training. Good news! We are adding a new skill path to train prep cooks to be line cooks.
Skimming is a natural part of reading. Whenever we’re scanning, our eyes stop on things that don't fit. Lists help with that habit. Can't keep a sentence tight? Consider sending a numbered list or bullet points.
Also, keep your language consistent from point to point so that when the eye scans, it's not distracted by formatting differences. Oh yeah, use emojis too 🙂
❌ This summer we have a lot of limited time offers. There will be training on all of these. We are promoting summertime drinks at the bar only, our new soft pretzel with Don's special mustard, and also a BOGO sandwich for lunch. All to bring in new customers
✅ This summer we have 3 limited time offers. Our goal is to attract new customers. Expect a course soon on Opus teaching you about these LTOs:
• 🍹 Summertime drinks (bar only)
• 🥨 Soft pretzel with Don's special mustard
• 🥪 Buy-On-Get-One sandwich (lunch only)
Opus customers have been leveraging "blasts" to text company information to employees. They are more effective and inclusive than email. They're also the perfect way to communicate procedure changes - an essential complement to mobile training.