Annual Reports, Quiet Quitting, and Crisis Communications: EEC’s Best-Read Content of 2023

AdminBlog, Effective, Utility CommunicationsLeave a Comment

There goes another year! Because we’re communicators, we could call 2023 the year of ChatGPT. Don’t worry, this blog is not being written by a generative AI chatbot. But it is being written with good old-fashioned gratitude that we have stayed in touch this year via EEC’s blog. We truly appreciate your readership, your content suggestions, and your introductions to … Read More

Utility Crisis Communications: Q&A with an Expert | Part 2

AdminBlog, Crisis Communications, Effective, Utility Communications

If you missed Part 1 of our interview on utility crisis communications in last month’s blog, you will want to check it out here. This month, we are continuing our conversation with veteran crisis communicator Tom Fladung of Hennes Communications. From wildfires in Hawaii to hurricanes in Florida, and sweltering heat, ice storms, boil-water notices, tornadoes, and extended service outages … Read More

Utility Crisis Communications: Q&A with an Expert | Part 1

AdminBlog, Crisis Communications

From wildfires in Hawaii to hurricanes in Florida, and sweltering heat, ice storms, boil-water notices, tornadoes, and extended service outages everywhere in between, 2023 has provided many crises (or near crises) on which utility communicators must communicate. That’s why we sat down with Thomas Fladung (below), managing partner at Hennes Communications, a crisis communications firm, to assess the current state … Read More

Podcasts: The Next Step in Utility DIY Content

AdminBlog, Customer, Utility Communications

  We are living in (or perhaps through?) a golden age of “do it yourself” (DIY) digital content. There are innumerable TikTok and YouTube personalities opining on, filming, and doing just about anything imaginable. Over 4.5 million podcasts exist, where hosts and guests regularly riff and rant on topics near and far, including sports, politics, business, movies, history, food and … Read More

How Utilities Can Combat Quiet Quitting

AdminBlog, Employee Communications, Organizational Culture, Utility Communications

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to recede into the rear-view mirror, a new management challenge — employees who are “quiet quitting” —– has emerged. It’s not entirely a new phenomenon: in earlier times, workers who performed at a minimally acceptable level were deemed to be “mailing it in.”   But what’s new and different about quiet quitting is that it … Read More

The VERY First Step to Writing a Better Annual Report

AdminBlog, Utility Communications, Utility Stakeholders, Writing

Who are you writing for? Successful writers start by thinking about their audience. Stephen King doesn’t write for the same audience that reads Jodi Picoult or Philippa Gregory. That’s not a dis on any of those oft-published, fabulously successful fiction writers. But it is a restatement of the First Commandment of Writing: Know thy audience! In my experience, that commandment … Read More

Utility Community Relations: Say “Hello” to the People (AKA “Customers”) Who Pay Your Salary

AdminBlog, Customer, Face-to-Face, Utility Communications, Utility Community Relations

“Believe only half of what you see and nothing that you hear.” That was a sentiment first expressed by Edgar Allen Poe in the 19th century, then made popular in the 20th century by the journalist H.L. Mencken. But today, the issue has new urgency: in an era of deepfake images and large-language-model artificial intelligence systems like ChatGPT and Bard, … Read More

Sky-High Energy Bills: Utilities Need New Actions and a New Narrative

AdminBlog, Customer, Utility Communications, Utility Customer Satisfaction, Value

Do you remember this painting? Prints of it have adorned college dorm rooms for decades. It’s Salvador Dali’s “Persistence of Memory.” I wasn’t an Art History major, so I’m not sure exactly what the melting clocks are supposed to signify. But the fact I remember it decades after I took it off my own dorm wall attests to the truth … Read More

How to Keep Your Utility Brand from Becoming Toxic

AdminBlog, Customer, Customers, Utility Communications, Utility Marketing

Whether your company delivers electricity or natural gas, your customers’ bills have shot up, which damages your utility’s brand. Analytically, we all understand why bills have shot up: Natural gas costs have skyrocketed. Colder weather has driven up customer usage. Inflation. Supply chain. The costs of building out or replacing your infrastructure. Heck, even water provider’s bills have risen, for … Read More