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Bring more goodwill to your content projects – Day 24

by , Content Strategist, GatherContent

This video is the twenty-fourth (and last) in our Content Strategy Advent Calendar series. Here, Jonathan Kahn offers a tip to help us bring goodwill into our content projects. Hint, it’s about better collaboration, so a must-watch to round off this year’s calendar.

Video transcript

Hi, my name is Jonathan Kahn. We all know that Christmas is the season of goodwill, so for my advent calendar tip, I’d like to share a way to bring more goodwill to your content projects.

What would it take to get all of your stakeholders to work with you to create content that works for everyone? Well here’s my tip. I think one of the reasons we have trouble with stakeholders, is that we know how to create effective content that will meet users needs. And what we try and do is convince our stakeholders of the right way to do it by presenting them with evidence and data and arguments.

Often they react to that with anecdotes, or with emotions, or with reactions that we think are political. Then what we do is pile on more evidence in trying to convince them to coming around to our point of view. The way to add some goodwill to the situation, is stop trying to move them from where they are to where we are. Instead, try and understand where they’re coming from.

There’s a reason they are sharing an anecdote. There’s a reason why they’re responding with emotion and if we can understand that reason, then we can start to understand why they want their content to be different to the way we’re saying it’s going to be.

When we start to acknowledge that they have a different perspective to ours, we can understand what they wish to contribute together with us and it’s only then that we can see some common goals. If you ask your stakeholder why they wish to use a jargon word, why they don’t like the changes we’ve made, why they don’t want tasked based content and listen, then you can start to pick out the underlying needs that are creating that.

From there we can work together by writing down all of the requirements that need to be met, both from our point of view in terms of the usability, and from their point of view in terms of their requirements or what they want the user to do.

That’s how we can bring a bit of Christmas goodwill to our content process. If you’d like to find out more about that approach and you can get to London on the 30th to the 31st of January then check out agile content conf where we’ll be going into much more detail about that.

Thank you and have a good holiday season.

About Jonathan

Jonathan Kahn organises agile content conf, where you can learn practices to help teams work together on content. He also organises the London Agile Content Meetup which has 2000 members. He’s @lucidplot on twitter.

About the Author

Content Strategist, GatherContent

Rob is Content Strategist at GatherContent. He is a journalism graduate and has previously worked as Studio Manager and Head of Content for a design agency and as an Audience Research Executive for the BBC. He’s a published author and regular contributor to industry publications including Net Magazine, Smashing Magazine, 24 Ways, WebTuts+, UX Matters , UX Booth and Content Marketing Institute. On occasion Rob speaks about content strategy at leading industry events.

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