By Michael Lynch, CCC, Digital Editor, NRECA
Working with an advisory group of respected and successful co-op communicators, NRECA is completely revamping its "Communication Tool Kit for Co-op Communicators." NRECA will introduce an initial version of the new tool kit at the CONNECT Conference in mid-May with subsequent updates and additions to follow.
The new toolkit, which is focused on both planning and execution, will help co-op communicators:
- Identify strategic communication objectives that align with their co-op's overall business plan and the vision of the CEO and board
- Create a communication plan with specific tactics to accomplish those strategic objectives
As part of developing the tool kit, NRECA staff surveyed co-op communicators to determine what would be most helpful to them. The key finding was that communicators wanted the tool kit to be very tactical. As such, the tool kit has been created to assist communicators both in planning innovatively and reacting quickly in an always-on communication environment.
Using questionnaires, checklists, templates and worksheets, major sections help communicators think through what they should be doing and establish plans for the following:
- Figuring out what to say
- Determining how best to deliver the message
- Winning internal support
- Creating and presenting a budget
- Communicating about outages and emergencies
While the tool kit should be useful to co-ops of any size, it is particularly targeted at co-ops that are striving for excellence while working with limited staff and budgets for communications, marketing and PR functions.
Check the Communications Interest Area on Cooperative.com in mid-May for more about the tool kit and how to get started using it. And, of course, if you are going to be at CONNECT in Minneapolis in May, you’ll hear much more about it there.