Communicating in a Global Context: Know Your Audience

Posted on: January 11, 2023, by :

“If an engineer’s primary goal is ultimately to solve problems for society, this goal may not be fulfilled if engineers cannot communicate effectively. Engineers can develop great solutions, but if we cannot effectively explain to society a solution is safe and viable, then we have failed.” -Kevin Forbes, P.E.

It’s not enough to excel at the technical components of engineering, successful engineers need to be able to communicate effectively with various groups and individuals in a wide range of settings. Communicating effectively involves preparation and knowing how to anticipate and navigate challenging conversations with ease. Engineers are known for being knowledgeable and highly skilled and involved in work that impacts society. Challenges arise and opportunities are missed when engineers cannot convince others of the importance of their ideas or of solutions to problems.

To communicate effectively, you must know your audience and be able to share information with them respectfully, and in a way that involves them and helps them feel informed. This is why I developed the on-demand webinar, Communicating in a Global Context: Know Your Audience. This webinar was inspired by a senior professional engineer, Kevin Forbes, who appreciates the importance of engineers being able to adapt their communication style and messaging to different audiences. Kevin is the Director of Engineering at the Indianapolis Airport Authority. His prior positions include SVP at the Harding Group and Director of Engineering for the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

This webinar is designed to enhance participants’ communication skills, enabling information to be delivered in a purposeful and persuasive way—with understanding your audience at the foundation of all effective communications. It also aims to guide engineers through the process of assessing and understanding an audience by using a set of key questions.