General Communication Tips

Let’s look at some general communication tips to help you be a successful communicator.

Drive clarity through communication

Your communication ability sets you apart from many other people in your company. Every other skill as a technical program manager depends on your ability to communicate clearly.

Let's talk about a few key communication tips that will be helpful in your role.

What does effective communication look like?

Effective communication can take many forms, but generally, it should be clear, concise, and tailored to your audience. Here are some key characteristics of effective communication for you as a technical program manager:

  • Clarity: You should be able to clearly and concisely convey technical information. This may involve using visual aids, tailored summaries, or different communication styles to make the information more understandable.

  • Transparent objectivity: You should be transparent and objective in your communication, providing accurate information and keeping stakeholders informed of progress, risks, and issues. Be data-driven in the way that you talk about progress.

  • Adaptability: You should be able to adapt your communication style and message to different audiences and situations. This includes understanding the technical level of the audience and tailoring the message accordingly.

  • Active listening: You should actively listen to feedback and questions from the audience and respond in a timely manner. This helps to build trust and establish a positive working relationship.

  • Empathy: You should be able to understand and communicate with a diverse group of people with different backgrounds, roles, and responsibilities while being aware of cultural differences.

  • Leadership: You should be able to lead by example and inspire, motivate, and influence your team members and stakeholders.

  • Proactivity: You should be proactive in identifying and addressing communication challenges and be able to anticipate and prevent potential communication issues.

A TPgM can effectively manage and lead a technical program and achieve the desired outcomes by demonstrating these characteristics.

Effective meeting facilitation

Meetings can quickly become a waste of time. You can have an immense influence on whether or not this happens, especially for the many meetings that you'll own, which will span multiple stakeholder groups.

Effective meeting facilitation is the process of managing and leading a meeting to achieve its desired outcomes.

  • Establish clear objectives: Before the meeting, establish the goals and objectives of the meeting. This will help you stay on track during the meeting.

  • Create an agenda: Create an agenda that includes the topics that need to be discussed and the specific outcomes that need to be achieved. This will help to keep the meeting organized and on schedule.

  • Encourage participation: Encourage participation from all attendees. This will help to ensure that everyone has a chance to contribute and that all perspectives are considered.

  • Keep the meeting on track: Stay focused on the agenda and keep the meeting on track. If discussions start to veer off topic, gently steer the conversation back to the agenda.

  • Manage group dynamics: Be aware of group dynamics and be prepared to manage any conflicts that may arise.

  • Follow up: After the meeting, follow up with attendees to ensure that action items are completed and any decisions are implemented.

Of course, not all meetings need to be so rigorously planned. Some meetings are focused on relationship building. If this is the case, more open time with a few planned, open-ended questions will suffice.

Know your audience

As a technical program manager, you know that your audience is diverse.

Before you communicate, consider the following:

  • Identify your audience: Understand who you are communicating with and their needs and expectations. This could include stakeholders, team members, or customers.

  • Understand their level of technical understanding: Assess the technical understanding of your audience and adjust your communication accordingly. For example, if you are communicating with nontechnical stakeholders, avoid using jargon or complex technical terms.

  • Tailor your message: Create a message that is tailored to your audience's needs and concerns. This could include using different communication styles or formats, such as visual aids or presentations.

  • Be clear and concise: Be clear and concise in your communication. Avoid using industry jargon and technical terms that your audience may not understand.

  • Actively listen and respond: Actively listen to your audience and respond to their questions and concerns. This will help to build trust and establish a positive working relationship.

  • Be prepared: Be prepared to communicate technical information and be able to explain it in a way that is easy to understand.


  • Drive clarity through communication.

  • Facilitate meetings effectively to drive program progress.

  • Your audience is diverse. Tailor your communications accordingly.

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