What have internal communicators been listening to over the past year?
What tip or nugget of information has helped you feel more confident in your work?
I relaunched my internal communication podcast exactly 12 months ago.
It was January 2021 and we were still in lockdown here in the UK. My blog stats showed IC pros were searching for advice.
There are hundreds of articles on my blog, going back to 2009. But I realised you were looking for fresh advice and inspirational ideas.
I’d been appearing as a guest on numerous podcasts, particularly to help IC pros through the pandemic, and the time felt right to relaunch my own.
So with that in mind, I enlisted the help of my brilliant Producer Debbie West from Seren Creative, and set to work.
Through this blog post I’ve looked back at the past year. I’ve shared topics to help you discover what you may have missed and revealed what your peers are listening to.
You’ll also discover how to get hold of a brand new Candid Comms podcast notebook, which went live on Amazon yesterday.
Want to know how the podcast is created?
Debbie and I recorded an episode at the end of season one to share a behind the scenes look.
What internal communicators are listening to
Feedback from internal comms pros shows you love listening to Candid Comms as much as I love creating it.
The episodes are evergreen, which means they don’t date. There is also a promo in the middle of each episode, which gives Candid Comms listeners 10% off my range of All Things IC Online Masterclasses.
The most popular episodes are:
- How to transform your internal communication
- How to work successfully with leaders
- How to be a strategic internal communicator
- Welcome to the Candid Comms podcast
- How to plan your IC channels
- How to work well with HR
- How to help line managers communicate
- How to communicate change
- How to say no to stakeholders
- How to create a sense of belonging.
The top 10 countries in terms of listener figures are :
- New Zealand.
Source: Candid Comms podcast stats via Podbean.
It also regularly appears in podcast charts, but I don’t really track those as it’s your feedback that matters to me. I logged in today while writing this article and discovered over the past year Candid Comms has appeared at number 10 in the UK charts’ Management category, 28 in the Entrepreneurship category and 72 in the Business category.
I also discovered the most popular time to listen to the podcast is 11pm (UK time) on a Saturday night. I didn’t know that until today.
Thank you to everyone who tags me when you are listening, I know I’ve accompanied you to the supermarket, on walks, while pushing babies and even in the bath! Do let me know where you’re tuning in. You can Tweet me @AllThingsIC.
Reflecting on the past year
Thank you for tuning in and sharing the difference the podcast has made to you.
I’m grateful to my guests for their wisdom. The memory of building LEGO with Keith is a really special one, although I know the audio was tricky for Debbie as we were both sorting bricks while we spoke!
These episodes were great fun to record and you can find the show notes and links below. Thank you to my guests for your candour, advice and experience.
- A candid conversation about mentoring with Melisa Kakas
- Being candid with Matt Batten
- How to communicate internationally with Laura Colantuono
- A candid conversation about inclusion with Keith Riley
- Being candid with Amrit Nijjar
- Being candid with Frank Dias
- Behind the scenes of the Candid Comms podcast with Debbie West.
I recorded a conversation yesterday with a special guest, which will be published next week to close season three.
Every week I receive direct messages from Comms pros saying the podcast has helped you tackle difficult problems, test your thinking or learn something new.
I have been blown away by the feedback from listeners. Thank you to everyone who has listened since January 2021 and taken the time to contact me or write a review via your favourite podcast player.
Knowing my advice and guidance has encouraged, supported and nurtured internal communicators around the globe fills my heart.
I invest time, money and effort in creating Candid Comms, including having it professionally produced and transcribed, because I believe every internal communicator deserves to thrive in their role.
I’ve avoided sponsorship and charging for this content, because your budget should not determine the knowledge you can access.
I’ve made it freely available to all, because I’m acutely aware how that would have impacted my own in-house IC career. It’s the same ethos I have for blogging, which is why I constantly refuse requests for partnerships, advertising, sponsorships and paywalls. Never say never, but for now, this strategy works for me (and has for the past 13 years).
I felt honoured when Candid Comms was a finalist in two categories of the International Women’s Podcast Awards 2021. It was only a few months old and we were surrounded by long-established podcasts on incredibly important topics. I was a finalist in the Moment of Touching Honesty Category and my Producer Debbie West was a finalist in the Behind The Scenes Brilliance category.
How I named the podcast
Whenever I’m launching something new, I find naming it one of the hardest things to do. If you’ve ever launched an intranet or new IC channel, I know you’ll share the pain!
I sought advice from clients and Comms friends before putting the podcast out into the world.
I knew the intention and my mindset, but struggled to name it. I shared the shortlist with my lovely client Chloe Maple, who liked the names, but suggested Candid Comms instead.
Perfect. Thank you Chloe. You captured my intentions in those two words. As soon as I read it, I knew it was the one.
Further reading: What to call an intranet.
What I’ve learnt
Recording Candid Comms has taught me a lot. During season one I revealed how lockdown had forced me to record sat in my car on the driveway. I was homeschooling my three children and it was the only quiet place in my house. I was using their car seats for sound proofing – not recommended! (See photograph below).
I’ve grappled with recording equipment, made more mistakes than you can imagine, battled with Police sirens, birds and West London noise, but ultimately, learnt a lot along the way.
As someone with hearing loss, and who struggles with audio content, creating a podcast has made me acutely aware of this fact. I can’t hear what my Producer hears. I was amazed when she told me she could hear my children talking at the other side of my house in an early episode. The power of a great microphone!
I’ve spoken candidly about my accessibility needs via the podcast. I’ve revealed more than I ever have before, and that has sparked so many conversations with Comms friends and clients alike. I’m also going to be a guest on an upcoming industry podcast on this topic. I’ll share more info in due course.
Further reading: What IC pros need to know about accessibility.
The equipment I use
Are you thinking of recording a podcast? If so, here’s my advice when it comes to equipment.
This is the equipment I started with a year ago:
- Blue Yeti Microphone – approximately £120
- Marantz professional sound shield – approximately £70
- Pop Shield – approximately £7
- Snowball microphone – approximately £55
- Recorded audio into voice memo on my phone.
This is the equipment I now use:
- Røde NT2A studio microphone – podcasters’ favourite! Approximately £200, includes pop shield and stand
- Røde PSA1 professional studio arm – this is a swivel mount, which fits the studio microphone
- Record audio into Logic Pro on laptop.
Note: links to go to my Amazon Affiliate account.
This is my Producer Debbie’s website, Seren Creative. I used to produce my own podcast seven years ago, which was under the FIR podcast network. Investing in a producer has made the world of difference, not only to the content I’m able to create but the fun I have too! Thank you Debbie and team for your hard work over the past year.
Episode nine will be out tomorrow, then episode 10 will close this season next weekend.
I have just launched a brand new product to support Candid Comms’ listeners. Regular readers of my blog will know I’ve created a range of All Things IC stationery, which is available to purchase via Amazon.
Two new notebooks have just been added to the range this week. I’m waiting to receive my author copies, but they are available to purchase now. There are two designs available, one with a teal typewriter and one with a teal microphone.
They are A5 sized, lined, and with sections to help you capture one thing to know, one thing to do and one thing to think about, which I share in every podcast episode.
Thank you to everyone who has listened to Candid Comms over the past year. Here’s to the next 12 months.
As ever, I love hearing from you. If you have a topic you’d like me to cover in season four, do let me know.
Remember, what happens inside is reflected outside. See you again soon.
Post author: Rachel Miller.
First published on the All Things IC blog 28 January 2022.