Charmaine Hammond is an expert in collaboration. Over the past 22 years in business, she has been contracted by municipalities, organizations, provincial government, and unions to facilitate collaboration processes such as community needs assessments, community working groups, team charters, and more.  

As a former mediator facilitating the resolution of some of the most complex conflicts in business, collaboration was at the root of Charmaine’s processes. One of the key ingredients of effective collaboration is clarity.

In business, you’ve likely heard the common phrase “less is more” and “bigger is not always better.” This is so true when it comes to communicating your message internally, to your team, and to customers and clients.

In sales, confusion generally results in overwhelm and a “no,” and this pretty much rings true in how confusion lands in a team. When employees are not clear on the vision or purpose, goals, or expectations,  you can pretty much guarantee the result will be disengagement or resistance.

But wait! There is good news!

Being clear can increase sales, improve trust and communication, prevent unnecessary conflict, and get you to results faster.

Here is Charmaine’s Getting CLEAR formula to improve the results of any collaboration:

  • Communicate your project/expectations in a way that is focussed, easy to understand, builds interest, and helps the team see where they fit in.
  • Leave unnecessary information and fluff out of the dialogue.
  • Engage the person early. Don’t make the conversation a monologue; find a point of interest that will help people embrace the information.
  • Ask questions to get the person or team engaged in the conversation and Avoid acronyms and terms that are not general knowledge or are trigger words/terms.
  • Repeat and remind the team of the most important details in a different way as you close the conversation.

When you are preparing to deliver important information to your team that requires their commitment, support, and engagement, it is important to work on scripting your presentation. Far too often, people “wing it” and the result is ambiguous explanations that lead to assumptions or rumours. Here are a few tips to communicate and collaborate in a CLEAR way:

  • Identify the 3 most important talking points about your message that need to come out right away.
  • Keep the explanation brief — about 2-3 minutes. People will zone out after that. You don’t need to share all the details right off the bat, just a short description that piques interest.
  • Practice your explanation in the mirror at least 10 times (and refine and modify as you go).
  • Video yourself (use your cell phone), practicing so you can critique and modify.
  • Avoid acronyms and industry speak; these often decrease interest or ignite frustration if these acronyms and terms are “trigger” words.
  • Make sure you have answered/prepared for these questions (these are the questions that your team will ask you!)

    • WHO
    • WHAT
    • WHERE
    • WHEN
    • WHY
    • HOW

Remember… clarity is key!

~ Charmaine Hammond, Raise a Dream

About Raise a Dream: Charmaine Hammond, CSP, and Rebecca Kirstein helps authors, speakers, and entrepreneurs raise their dreams, launch their books, and make a bigger difference in the world through collaboration, partnership, and sponsorship. Charmaine is a 4-time best-selling author with five books and is authored in seven others. You can follow Raise a Dream at:


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