For public health professionals and advocates who want to communicate more effectively with the housing, education, health systems, and business sectors about the value of collaboration
Demonstrate your familiarity with the sectors you wish to engage
The Goal & The Challenge
When the goal is… to convince other sectors of the benefits of collaboration through a clear, compelling, and targeted appeal…
The challenge is… that each sector encompasses a wide range of focus areas, professionals, and skill sets. Communications that fail to acknowledge this diversity can feel impersonal or even irrelevant to those on the receiving end—a hazard compounded by the perception that public health professionals are “book smart” and often out of touch with initiatives being carried out on the ground.
When You Say… We’re eager to work with the housing sector to ensure all residential buildings are being constructed and maintained to prevent health conditions associated with mold, pest infestations, etc.
They Think… Maybe public health doesn’t understand the housing sector well enough to know who exactly they want to partner with. Are they looking to work with developers like me, or others such as contractors, property managers, or even policy analysts?
Framing can help
Framing can help build up the credibility of the public health field and earn another sector’s trust by demonstrating knowledge of that sector’s inner workings and diverse elements, and where appropriate, addressing key internal distinctions that exist. Most of all, avoid talking about “the housing sector” or “the business sector” as a whole, and instead refer to the particular subgroups within that sector that you aim to reach.
An effective reframe would look something like this:
We’re eager to support the work of affordable housing developers, who are increasingly attentive to the links between our community’s health and our affordable housing stock. Working together, we can approach proposals for new construction projects through this lens as a critical strategy for improving the health of the community.
Remember, the reframe isn’t a ready-made talking point. It’s a sample iteration that models the framing recommendation in action.