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From mind-numbing to delightful… a sparkly secret

February 7, 2024

When was the last time you eagerly downloaded a form or quivered with anticipation over your work emails?

Select your response:

  1. Once, but then I woke up
  2. Never
  3. Are you on drugs?*

Let’s be real. Most work communication can be as thrilling as watching paint dry.

But it doesn’t have to be. It’s not hard to inject the smallest bit of sparkle, a glimmer of fun, one baby sequin, not the whole shebang into your next communication.

On my daily walk, I was inspired by a new electronic signboard on a busy pedestrian bridge. No, it didn’t talk to me (this is not a riff on LA Story**).

When it has nothing to say, the board throws in a cheeky smiley face. That’s it. A little ray of sunshine, unexpected, so delightful.😀

And of course, they use the signboard for regular communication, telling cyclists to slow down, reminding pedestrians to stay safe etc. But in the middle of that, one yellow smiley face.

It’s a simple idea but genius, turning a boring signboard into a sparkling gem.💎

How can you add a pinch of sparkle to your next message? Start by replacing any boring overused business word, with a colourful, emotive, sensory word or phrase instead.

Start with just one-word pr phrase. For example, synergy could be ‘idea salsa’. Disruption? ‘Buckle up for the roller coaster of change’. Optimisation – yikes, sorry briefly blacked out then. Opt for ‘making every detail sing’ instead.

Every boring business word has a sparkly twin, and you can hunt it down.

In the endless desert of dull communication, your drop of sparkle will feel like a tsunami of dazzle. So, what word will you be replacing today?

*NO, never I don’t even do coffee!

** LA Story, starring Steve Martin, a satirical romantic comedy film (circa 1991). Watch it for the coffee scene alone.

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