UN Updates

DPI NGO Communications Workshop by Jocelyn A. Quijano, PBVM

DPI NGO Communications Workshop

dpi-ngo-companions-2016-12-8One benefit of being at the United Nations is the availability of workshops. One workshop I recently attended was called “The Art of Persuasion: How to Influence and Mobilize for your Cause in Support of the Sustainable Development Goals.” The reality, however, is that the learnings gleaned from the workshop may be applied to other aspects of ministry as well.

The main speaker was Adele Cehrs, founder and CEO of Epic PR Group. Her background is primarily public relations and marketing. I initially felt that some of the strategies she mentioned did not apply to NGOs. Upon reflection, however, I thought that everything she said can be adapted to our particular work both at the UN and at the local, regional, and national levels.

There were a lot of things I heard at the workshop. I would like to share some that stayed with me. Perhaps they would kindle some reflection and adaptation in your ministries.

  • How do we do “elevator pitch” to make the most impact? Now I do not know about you, but it was the first time I heard the phrase “elevator pitch.” Basically it means that one makes the most of the time it takes for the elevator to go from the 1st to the 4th That means that I/you have to be able to make my/your pitch in 60-90 seconds, and do it well so as to have the ‘target’ (i.e., a permanent representative) on my/your side by the time the elevator doors open. That is quite a challenge!
  • Simple is the new smart. If you and I are able to simplify our message in such a way that other people can repeat it, you and I will be more successful in communicating our message across.
  • People are susceptible to the power of suggestion. If we understand this, we can make it work for our audience.
  • Adele shared a message framework that can be used to describe our organization and the issues we care about. It is taken from the book, “POP,” by Sam Horn. She suggested using super simple words at the 5th-7th grade levels. Try the exercise and complete the following framework:
    • Did you know ….?
    • Did you know ….?
    • Imagine if ….
    • You don’t have to imagine because ….

In the interest of trying to implement what I heard ~ did you know that we can get our message across in simple words? Did you know that people will remember our message if we do that? Imagine if people can repeat our message and the subsequent impact it will have on people’s lives. You don’t have to imagine it because if you click on the link below, you will learn how to do it.


1 Response

  1. Mary Ivers

    Excellent work and reflections on systemic change. This is the most difficult of all but it vital now. Congratulations to the people involved in the above sharings

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