In 2018, the National Nurse-Led Care Consortium started a strategic planning process to thoughtfully consider and plan for the organization’s future. Communications and the organization’s brand was a major part of this discussion. As the most senior communications staff member, I spearheaded our strategic planning around these topics.
We are an national organization with many diverse programs, multiple offices, and staff who travel across the country every week. We found that often staff were disconnected from their coworkers and the overall mission and collective identity of the organization. Staff could speak extensively about their programs, but struggled to talk about what made our organization at-large unique.
I created this Style Guide to address two problems. First, I wanted to give our staff a sense of a shared identity. This guide should work in coordination with other efforts like better internal communications, changing the structure of meetings, an internal newsletter, and staff outings. The first sections of the Style Guide give readers our value statement, a brief history of the organization and discussion of our brand, and keywords that shape our identity.
Next, my focus was on creating a set of standards that staff could quickly reference when creating materials. Ideally, I am working with program managers from the start of a project to create the communications (digital, print, or PR) that they need to support their programming. We made significant improvements to our ability to coordinate and plan for these projects; however, there are still times when staff in the field working on complex projects may need to make last-minute updates with little or no time for a formal review. This guide provides a comprehensive overview in a way designed to be easy to find the sections staff members need to reference.
The final product is 56-pages in length (not including the covers and table of contents) and includes the organization’s history, values, design specifications (colors, fonts, formatting, etc.), and written style guidelines.