The BZ Cast – Leaking or Whistleblowing?

Benjamin BryantLeaking continues to play a major role in US politics – from email leaks on both sides during the 2016 election to former FBI Director James Comey’s recently leaked memos, their impact on public perception and even policy has been significant. But despite President Trump’s harsh rhetoric on leakers (similar to the Obama administration before him), is leaking actually illegal? Some leakers consider themselves whistleblowers performing a public service by exposing morally questionable government activity. Is there a legal difference between leaking and whistleblowing? BZ President and CEO Benjamin Bryant sat down with veteran military lawyer Christopher Nuneviller in the newest BZ Cast episode for a concise but comprehensive overview of leaks and the legal intricacies that come with this controversial topic.

Here are a few of the questions addressed in the 40-minute podcast:

  1. Does a leaker or whistleblower’s motivation matter from a legal standpoint? Does clear “good intent” make a difference?
  2. Can the nature or severity of the leaked material make a difference as to whether or not the leaker faces prosecution?
  3. Are there cases where leaking or whistleblowing is either outright protected or at least fully legally defensible? Do whistleblower protections ever apply to federal Government or military personnel, and are they absolute?
  4. If a formal channel for making an official report does not exist, what other options does a federal employee or military member have? Some have said that Edward Snowden, for example, should have gone to Congress.  Is that realistic or even possible?
  5. In order to seek legal advice, should one fully disclose the information in question to a lawyer or is that a crime in and of itself, despite the protected nature of the communications?

Listen to the full podcast above, or on SoundCloud here:

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BZ Helps IDIS Celebrate 20th Anniversary at ISC West 2017

BZ President and CEO Benjamin Bryant was at the ISC West security industry tradeshow in Las Vegas, NV last week, supporting longtime client IDIS by hosting a press event commemorating the video surveillance giant’s 20th anniversary in the security industry.

For more background on this top BZ partner, read the full story of the IDIS 20th anniversary event at ISC West from Security Sales & Integration here:

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Proofreading with Creativity

Smooth CanyonIn the rush to get your work ‘up and out,’ never neglect the last (and most important) step: proofreading. There is always room in the box of tools for creative approaches to polishing one’s writing. Give this article from CopyBlogger a quick read for some tips on how to make proofreading less mind-numbing:

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BZ Launches Job Seeker Services Program

Outside of new Facebook profile pictures, there are probably few things that we as professionals spend more time fretting over than our resumes. Even with a steady job in a fulfilling career, the uncertain economy of today demands that we remain poised at the ready with a carefully tailored series of bullets describing our best professional qualities.

One of the struggles with maintaining an effective resume is the mixed messaging we receive throughout our careers about what makes our resumes stand out. When I was applying for my first job after school, one of the things my mentors stressed was the importance of a strong objective statement – but did you know that 80% of the time present-day hiring managers look at a resume, they pay no attention at all to objective statements? That’s at least three 3 more lines you could have used to talk about your PMP certification, the volunteer work you do, or making the Dean’s List!

To help take some of these uncertainties out of the professional transition process, BZ is launching our Job Seeker Services program. Our Executive Consulting Services team can help give you the words and strategies to market yourself effectively to potential employers, and can assist in identifying and compensating for weak spots or challenges in your personal and employment background.

Click here for a full list of services and packages for job seekers, and take a look at the infographic below for a few additional quick resume tips to get you started!

View the original infographic from here:

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Commonly Misunderstood Words

Misunderstood Words
Our staff caught two of these in competitor communications this week. Not good! But it’s not only consultancies like ours that benefit from a top level communications game. Little by little, up YOUR game–and you’ll increasingly stand out from the rest.

Read the full article here:

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BZ Client IDIS Celebrates 20th Anniversary In the Video Surveillance Industry

BZ leaders Benjamin Bryant and Tommy Zamberlan spent the last week at the Intersec security trade fair in Dubai, UAE supporting longtime BZ client IDIS as the company began the year-long celebration of its 20th anniversary in the video surveillance market.

For more background on this top BZ partner, read the full story of the IDIS 20th anniversary launch from SP&T News here:…/happy-two-decades-to-idis

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IKEA Demonstrates Effective Parody Advertising

Parody-as-marketing has be executed almost flawlessly to avoid the appearance of pettiness or coming off as “trying to hard.” This send-up of Apple and technology from IKEA is an excellent example of how to strike the right balance between playful parody and marketing when launching new promotions.


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How to Avoid Common Public Speaking Mistakes

Modern family quote: Look, I should probably just sit down and say nothing, but it's too late. I am standing, and I'm obviously talking, and now you're looking at me, and I feel the need to keep going.Do you struggle when it comes time for you to deliver your presentation to a crowd? Keep these common public speaking mistakes in mind the next time you’re preparing to give a presentation:

1. Your presentation is too long
2. Your presentation has too much detail
3. You don’t have a story
4. You don’t have a call to action
5. Your message is unclear
6. Your slides are boring
7. You’re making the wrong pitch

Take a look at this article from for more tips on improving your public speaking skills.

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What are the Best Times and Types of Content to Post on Social Media

Social Media Post TimesIf you’re trying to grow your organization’s social media presence, you might not realize that WHEN you post to social media can matter just as much as WHAT you’re posting. Take a look at this infographic from Quicksprout for a quick guide on ideal posting times for different social media platforms.

Find the full infographic here:

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Using Stronger Bullet Points

Bullet pointsBullet points are one of the strongest tools in a communicator’s arsenal, taking complex chunks of information and laying it out in an easily digestible layout.  They can be used in all types of prose, from PowerPoint presentations to business proposals, and often make reading your content a much more accessible endeavor for your audience. More than simple tools for breaking down unwieldy information, bullet points can also be deployed in your content as tools to draw readers in and either keep them engaged in your writing or sell them a product or idea. These types of bullet points are referred to as “fascinations,” and are often used as marketing or sales tools, but can be repurposed for nearly any type of content.

Fascination bullet points come in two flavors: external fascinations and internal fascinations. External fascinations are used to prompt a call to action, typically by alluding to information, effects, or benefits of a product or service without revealing hard evidence or substance, a kind of “teaser” bullet if you will. The second type, internal fascinations, are slightly more versatile. Theses bullet points are meant to persuade your audience to continue reading your content, and are especially useful towards the beginning of blog posts, articles, or book summaries.

Finally, perhaps my favorite way to use bullet points is by “bullet chunking.” As any longtime BZ blog readers know, I am prone to compound sentences and complex ideas. The next time you have a long list of supporting evidence to back up a claim or thought, try removing each item and instead create a bulleted list, making your content more readable and therefore more persuasive.

For more tips on using bullet points effectively, take a look at these tips from Copyblogger:

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