Sunday, January 8, 2012

The Best Communication Tool: Your Brain

While flipping through my Pulse newsfeed I ran across a headline that required a double-take and click-thru: Coffee Cup Alerts Mount Rainier Campers. I was familiar with the bizarre and tragic story that unfolded last week in Mt. Rainier so I had to see what a coffee cup had to do with things.

On Monday, January 2, four Seattle hikers were enjoying a weekend of winter camping at Mount Rainier National Park when a helicopter buzzed overhead with a mostly incoherent message through a loudspeaker. The campers were unclear as to the pilot's spoken words, so he went to Plan B. He dropped a coffee cup with a warning written in black ink: "A ranger has been shot shooter at large. Call on cell if able to Pierce Co Sheriff."

Communication Win
In addition to things working out in the end for the campers as they made it to safety, I also really like this story from a communication professional's perspective. This is a fantastic reminder that quick-thinking and creative problem-solving are sometimes necessary to get a message across. Those typically faithful effective communication options and channels may fail you when you least expect it. Do whatever it takes to communicate. Be ready for your Plan B.

I think one the comments from the Discovery News post said it best: "This proves (again) that the best tool humans could ever have is brain. With or without technology at hand."

What do you think? As always, the comments are yours.


Photo credit: along with more images and a full report from the campers
(BTW, Pulse is a sweet interactive mobile news aggregator if you're looking for one.)