Should you train your whole staff to write well or just upskill one or two?

We’ve just finished another series of workshops for a government department and taught a range of staff across the dept how to write and why it’s important to get it right. Why do we do tailored workshops? Is there a benefit to teaching a whole group of staff from one organisation rather than have them go off one at a time to a corporate workshop?


Training your staff en masse addresses a number of issues when it comes to writing great content for your web site.

Firstly, there is a misunderstanding in business that everyone can communicate. I have sat in on project briefings in which the project manager has been told to get the message out. No-one checked with the project manager as to whether they had the skillset to do it. The underlying view is that they naturally did. Communication, like any other part of business, is a skill and to presume that all of your staff can communicate well in the written form sets your organisation up against challenges of consistency, quality and quick delivery. Training them all individually can be expensive – which is why govt departments are leaning more towards training them all at once.

Secondly, this type of training introduces consistency across the department or organisation. If you have one key message to get across, training them to write to that message works.

Thirdly, it’s cheaper. That is usually enough to get the attention of management.

Lastly, the work starts in the workshop, not after it. Our tailored workshops use examples that are real to the staff. The examples we used in the government department workshop were their own examples. They weren’t hypotheticals. They weren’t examples of government communication from the UK or Canada … and they allowed the staff to apply the theory directly to their own work.

There is a real benefit to lifting the skillset of a whole group of people rather than just training up one person and then giving them the job of improving everything.


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