The language of non profits

I always considered myself pretty fluent in English. I was a top rated public speaker and considered a strong communicator with an ability to convey technical concepts to non-technical people.

But now I’m in the world of non profits and even though they are speaking English, I’m having difficulty understanding them. The words are so nuanced that a simple term turns offensive. It’s a sector specific language with good intentions but burdened with bureaucracy. It creates walls, barriers to understanding. This is in conflict to the inclusiveness that many non profits seek.

So as I go forward, appreciating the nuances of this new language I am mindful that to be understood by others outside this world, you need to return to the age old concept of Plain Language. Simple terms, easily understood because in the end, communication at a basic level to many is more valuable than precision for a select few.

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