Plain Language Awards

Celebrate the stories of our clearest business communicators

Guidelines for creating your plain language story

Here are some prompts to get you started

Why we’re inviting you to share your story

Telling your story — what your video could include

Below are suggestions for what you could include in your video.

Feel free to choose one of these suggestions as your inspiration, or to take your own unique approach.

Tell us the story of your Awards entry

Your entry might be about a team, an organisation, a document, a website, or sentence rewrite. Here are some questions that you can use as prompts for your content, answering one or all of the them. Or come up with your own questions.

  • What does your organisation do?
  • Why does plain language matter in your industry?
  • What or who prompted the need for a plain language approach?
  • What was the problem you were trying to address?
  • What was your experience of putting plain language techniques into practice?
  • Did you come up against any challenges or naysayers?
  • What the outcome was of your plain language approach? What successes did you notice?
  • What did your customers say about the plain language document intended for them?
  • What was interesting or unique about the project?

Tell your own story of why plain language matters to you

Everyone’s light-bulb moment about plain language happens differently.

For some, a personal crisis helps them understand the importance of plain language. Others find themselves in a role where it’s a matter of life or death for customers to understand the information they’re given.

And for others, meeting plain language advocates helps them realise they could communicate in a different way. Everyone’s experience is unique, and that’s what we want to share.

Guidelines for video format and style

Take as long as you need to tell your story, but in case a guideline is helpful, we suggest you aim for between 2 and 10 minutes long.

We’d love to see you and your team in the video. Feel free to record a casual video with your phone in a natural setting, or to go all out on production values. Interview or discussion-style videos can be really engaging, and are easy to set up. You’re welcome to share a slideshow with a voice-over, which you can easily record on Zoom or similar software.

Showing examples of your plain language project would be great if they’re ready to be shared. You could show photos, examples, props, and video clips to illustrate your story. Animations can be fun to create, and using free software like Canva will help you get great results.

You’ll upload your video and a thumbnail image for the front of your video. The gallery accepts all common video and image file types.

Most of all, we hope you’ll see this as an exciting opportunity and have fun creating your video.

Ready to share your video?

Follow the link to Submittable below to upload your video and add a few details to let people know what your story is about. If you don’t have a Submittable account, it’s easy to make one. You’ll be able to use it later if you also want to enter the Awards.

When you upload your video, image, and information, you agree to allow the Plain Languagge Awards to display your content on our gallery.

Go to our Submittable form to upload your video

View stories of plain language in our gallery

We’re here to help

Questions? Feel free to email