A friend of mine sent me a link to this talk by Julian Treasure. If you have time, have a watch and listen. It's great.
Essentially, he says, to be heard you need to speak with:
Honesty, Authenticity, Integrity, Love.
We're going into a federal election in Australia as well as the U.S. and the b.s. is flying left, right and centre.
What better time to illustrate the effectiveness of the HAIL method than right now.
Politicians are guilty of failing the HAIL method all the time.
Let's unpick this exchange between the Shadow Health Minister Catherine King and The ABC's AM Presenter Michael Brissenden that aired on the 19th of May.
"And on hospital funding, we're still waiting to hear what Labor's going to do about that. There is a shortfall of some $57 billion that was taken out of states funding in 2014."
"When can we expect to know what Labor is going to do about it, what your policy in that regard is going to be?"
"Well, today we're focusing on a major commitment to backing Medicare and backing primary care. We will have more to say about hospitals in the course of the election. We're only in week two but you can absolutely guarantee Labor will do far better than Malcolm Turnbull when it comes to our public hospitals.
We actually care about this stuff, we care about what's happening for patients, we care about what's happening in our public hospital system and we care about Medicare."
She didn't answer his question at all and had probably been told to stay on message (Medicare rebate policy announcement).
It drives you nuts as a reporter because politicians think they can get away with answering questions with a slogan, rather than tell the truth.
The rehearsed answer sounds awful, it's off-putting and destroys trust simply because that good ole HAIL rule is completely ignored.
Former long serving Liberal Prime Minister John Howard was a master of getting cut through to the Australian people.
Why? Because he always spoke his truth and he knew his policies inside out, so he could answer all kinds of questions with a proper answer and not some ridiculous slogan.
It's also why I think someone like Donald Trump gains enormous popularity.
He shoots from the hip and speaks his truth all the time.
Too bad he's got buckley's of whipping the votes in Congress to get his ridiculous policies through like banning Muslims and getting Mexico to create a wall around its borders. But he speaks the 'water cooler' talk every day and people listen. Pauline Hanson did the same thing.
Regardless of the actual merit of their policies, people are listening listen to them. Because they cut through the b.s.
The Immigration Minister Peter Dutton's comments about refugees are atrocious, spiteful and simply not true. Epic fail of HAIL.
"For many people they [refugees] won't be numerate or literate in their own language let alone English... these people would be taking Australian jobs and there is no question about that," he said.
I freelanced for SBS World News for a while after I left the ABC so I covered scores of stories that appealed to its target audience - multi-cultural Australians.
One of my favourites stories was reporting on data released from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, actually showing that refugees are more likely to be entrepreneurial than migrants.
Finally, to love. No words ever spoken out of love fall on deaf ears.
I spoke at a much loved family friend's funeral once. I was nervous and the speech was spontaneous and 'off the cuff'.
I asked my Dad how I went afterwards.
"You spoke from the heart love, you can never go wrong when you speak from the heart".