Insights and Highlights

#IABC19 keynote Peter Sheahan to focus on accelerated growth, innovation and courageous leadership

Are you ready for four days of inspiring speakers, global insights and connecting with communication professionals from around the world? It’ll be here before you know it.

Over 50 breakout sessions for the 2019 IABC World Conference (#IABC19) have been announced, Soledad O’Brien will give the opening talk on the state of the media, Corporate Rebels will inspire us with their mission to make work fun, and Celeste Headlee will speak on the lost art of conversation. Plus, we’ll soon post additional breakout sessions.

We’re excited to tell you that we’ve added CEO and author Peter Sheahan as our closing keynote. On Wednesday, 12 June 2019, Peter will present the session “Accelerated growth: Building organizations and teams capable of sustaining growth through a culture of innovation, courageous leadership and aligned individuals.”

With staff in 24 cities, across nine countries, Peter knows firsthand the challenges of growing a business in the rapidly changing marketplace. He’s delivered more than 2,500 presentations to over 500,000 people in 20 different countries. Peter was named one of the 25 Most Influential Speakers in the World by the National Speakers Association and is the youngest person ever to be inducted into their industry Hall of Fame. He’s a great fit for the international audience that will attend #IABC19 as we focus on the conference theme of “Think Forward.”

Make an investment in your career that will pay dividends for years and join us for the can’t-miss conference for business communicators. Register now if you haven’t already, and we’ll see you 9–12 June at the 2019 IABC World Conference in Vancouver.

Learn more about Peter Sheahan.

Register today!

Discover the “lost art of conversation” with keynote Celeste Headlee at #IABC19

Celeste Headlee’s TEDx Talk, “10 ways to have a better conversation” has been viewed by millions. This June, you can hear her speak in person at the 2019 IABC World Conference in Vancouver as she puts the focus on a critical topic.

In a time when conversations are often minimized to a few words in a text message and lack of meaningful communication and dialogue abounds, Celeste sheds a much-needed light on the lost and essential art of conversation. Don’t miss her talk and everything else this year’s event has to offer.

Nearly 50 breakout sessions for the conference have been announced, award-winning journalist Soledad O’Brien will give the opening talk on the state of the media and Corporate Rebels will inspire us with their mission to make work fun. Plus, we’ll soon announce one more keynote speaker and additional breakout sessions.

It’s the can’t-miss conference for business communicators and prices go up after 6 March! Make an investment in your career that will pay dividends for years. Register now if you haven’t already, and we’ll see you 9–12 June at the 2019 IABC World Conference in Vancouver.

Learn more about Celeste Headlee

This session is sponsored by: 

 

Join Celeste Headlee on a journey that explores human nature and understanding.

 

Register today!

See these new sessions and plan your IABC World Conference schedule

Just announced! Nearly 50 breakout sessions for the 2019 IABC World Conference are now online. You can browse the list, search by keyword, sort by track, click on any session for details and start planning your personal conference schedule in advance.

Don’t forget to book your room early too, as the conference hotels tend to fill up quickly. There are discounted room blocks available at the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver and Hyatt Regency Vancouver while supplies last. Breakout sessions and most meals will happen at the Hyatt and we’ll have special events and general sessions at the Fairmont. The hotels are directly across the street from each other, so it will be easy to go back and forth.

If you missed our previous keynote announcements, award-winning journalist Soledad O’Brien will give the opening talk on the state of the media, Corporate Rebels continue their mission to make work fun and, in the coming weeks, we’ll announce two more keynote speakers and additional breakout sessions.

It’s the can’t-miss conference for business communicators and it’s less than five months away! Register now if you haven’t already and we’ll see you 9–12 June in Vancouver for the 2019 IABC World Conference.

Register today!

Book your discounted hotel room while supplies last.

The Excellence Gala: An evening to remember

Held each year in celebration of the highest achievements in the communication profession, the glamorous Excellence Gala at the IABC World Conference is the communication professional’s night of nights, filled with inspiration, delicious food, entertainment and great company.

At the Excellence Gala, IABC honors Gold Quill Award winners, IABC Fellows, and winners of the Jake Wittmer Award, Business Issue Award and Sharon Berzok Award. The Gold Quill Awards, IABC’s premier awards program, recognizes and fosters excellence in the field of business communication, and recipients from all over the world are recognized for their achievements.

Celebrate the best

The Excellence Gala is a black-tie-optional celebration that has long been one of IABC’s most prestigious events. It’s a perfect opportunity celebrate the hard work and accomplishments of your team or clients.

This year, the Excellence Gala will be held on Tuesday, 11 June 2019, at the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver.

Learn more about the Excellence Gala….

Register now!

Find out about Gold Quill Awards and become a sponsor.

#IABC19 Corporate Rebels: They’ll change what you think you know

The Corporate Rebels are on a mission to make work more fun. They quit their frustrating, corporate jobs and set out to visit the world’s most inspiring organizations, from well-known examples such as Spotify, Google and Patagonia to lesser-known companies that organize work in radically different ways.

Based in The Netherlands, the Corporate Rebels’ blog is read in more than 100 countries and they’ve been featured in the New York Times, Forbes, The Huffington Post, The Guardian, and the BBC. They join a 2019 IABC World Conference keynote lineup that already features award-winning journalist Soledad O’Brien, with even more speaker and breakout session announcements on the way. Keep an eye on your inbox, the World Conference website and the #IABC19 hashtag.

Register now and join us for the can’t-miss conference of the year for business communicators. We’ll see you 9–12 June in Vancouver for the 2019 IABC World Conference!

Learn more about the Corporate Rebels

This session sponsored by:

 

Opening IABC World Conference keynote Soledad O’Brien to speak on the state of the media

When IABC signed with other organizations to support the freedom of the press, we showed our deep commitment for this global value. With award-winning journalist Soledad O’Brien as our opening keynote speaker, we’ll carry that commitment forward at the 2019 IABC World Conference.

Fitting with this year’s theme, “Think Forward,” we’ll look at major changes affecting the communication landscape, including the freedom of the press and its relation to the global business community. We’ll consider how changes to technology and the media are affecting our ability to stay true to the ideals of ethics, truth and transparency.

Soledad O’Brien will draw from her experiences to discuss the challenges and transformations to the global media. Even as the media is under assault (e.g., disappearance of journalists, government distrust), the world is relying on it more than ever for the voices, facts and revelations it brings forward.

Make your career a priority and join us for the can’t-miss conference of the year for business communicators. Register now and take four days to learn, grow and discover at the 2019 IABC World Conference, happening 9–12 June in Vancouver.

Learn more about Soledad O’Brien.

This session is sponsored by: 

 

 

 

Register today!

How can you make a conference reach around the world?

2018 IABC World Conference in Montréal

Actionable strategic insights from #IABC18—for participants—and event and conference organizers…

This year IABC’s World Conference got its mojo back. In-person participation was at a five-year high and a new record was set for virtual participation. Well done Team IABC.

Now what might we learn from this that can be used to help you make your next event or conference reach around the world? This brief article breaks down the numbers, and shares strategic actionable insights – and good practice ideas from a range of global voices.

It’ll help your hard work reach further, create more connection and help set you up for deeper post-event insights and results. And it’ll also help you invite more diverse voices to participate – both in and beyond the room.

“Develop diversity and inclusion as a core strength. We know that diverse companies are more profitable and deliver stronger business results…”  – Ginger D Homan, IABC Chair

Read More

IABC World Conference is coming to Vancouver in 2019!

Breathtakingly beautiful, with a mild climate, and heralded as one of most uniquely diverse cities in Canada, Vancouver is the chosen location for the IABC World Conference! Join us for IABC’s premier annual conference designed for the communication professional.

Save the dates

The World Conference will take place Sunday, 9 June, through Wednesday, 12 June, at two hotels: Hyatt Vancouver and Fairmont Vancouver.

If you attended the 2018 conference in Montréal, then you know that you’re in store for an incredible experience. You’ll get the latest trends, solutions and answers to critical questions facing the communication profession. Along the way, you’ll make valuable connections that will support you and your career for years to come.

Pre-registration discount

Throughout August, IABC members will be able to take advantage of a big discount for the 2019 World Conference by pre-registering. If you’re not an IABC member, it’s one more great reason to join!

 

Join us in Vancouver!

 

Apply to join the World Conference Program Advisory Committee

Help shape the 2019 IABC World Conference! You can help advance the communication profession, meet thought leaders and new colleagues, and learn about new trends in the field by volunteering for the IABC Program Advisory Committee (PAC).

This opportunity is a great fit for people with tighter schedules who cannot make a huge time commitment but want to make big impact. We are searching for a diversity of disciplines within the communication industry and geographic representation.

One of the biggest tasks of the PAC is evaluating speakers for break-out sessions, recommending keynotes and amplifying the marketing promotions via social media.

Interested? Fill out this form and we’ll be in touch.

Apply to serve on the 2019 World Conference Program Advisory Committee

2018 World Conference recap, day three: Making leaders great communicators

Photo credit: Sabrina Belzil

by Charmane Russell

On day three of the 2018 IABC World Conference, the theme of the communication crossroads continued to dominate presentations and conversations, particularly as this applies at a leadership level.

General session: CEO panel

The opening general session, a panel moderated by Hugues Mousseau, vice president and partner with Syrus Reputation, introduced three CEOs: Luc Sabbatini, of PBSC Urban Solutions; Eugène Lapierre, of the Rogers Cup; and Ralph Hosker, of Belron Canada. Central to the discussion was whether and how communication can make a demonstrable contribution to business success and whether business communicators are positioned to be the next chief strategy officers.

On whether there has been an evolution in the role of communicators in business, the panelists agreed that there has been a rapid transformation, rather than a slow evolution. Lapierre cited an example: The discourse related to narrative did not exist 10 years ago—today it is central to the C-suite.

What can communicators do more of to become more relevent? “We want advice,” said Lapierre, “so we are a couple of steps ahead of the game.” Said Sabbatini, “Communication is a long-term investment. We need to be innovative—find new ways of doing things.”

“Employee engagement is a company’s best defense [in reputation management],” said Hosker. “Be connected to the organization you are working with,” he added. “Give me feedback on what people are thinking and feeling, honestly and clearly, and in a constructive way, with ideas of how to take things forward.”

As part of the discussion, Moisseau released initial results of the Syrus’ 2018 CEO Reputation survey, which included:

  • 84% of CEOs surveyed said they couldn’t do without their business communicators.
  • 92% felt that communications is ROI-positive, rather than a cost center.
  • The main obstacles to good communication were: (1) budget/financial resources; (2) team expertise and experience, (3) organizational culture, (4) business acumen and (5) understanding company objectives.
  • Most valuable areas of contribution: (1) generating goodwill (reputation); (2) protecting reputation; and (3) employee engagement.
  • 77% of CEOs felt that communication has become more important over the past five years.

And, will communicators shape strategy in the future? According to Sabbatini, it’s team work, and part of the ethos and culture of the company, so not down to one role. Yes, said Hosker, you could. But, you need to be good at strategy, because communication and strategy are not one and the same thing.

Making leaders great communicators

Colin Hatfield’s afternoon breakout session was a really useful follow-up to the CEO session: He pointed out that while communication lies at the heart of leadership, leaders are often ill-prepared for specific communication challenges. What’s more, they are often under-served by the communication professionals who support them.

He asked the question: “Do businesses tolerate financially illiterate leaders?” By extension then, why would we accept mediocrity in leadership communication? He notes that we have the opportunity to amplify leadership through communication, and presented a three-part manifesto for leadership communication.

Practical communication

A presentation by Lisa Hartenberger, director of global communications at Tenneco, and Kate Bushnell, president of the Grossman Group, in a presentation on a best-in-class plant communication, demonstrated in very practical terms the role of communication in improving engagement and, as a consequence, improving production and safety.

An interesting part of their approach was to ensure focus, adopting a process of triage, so that the most effort went into addressing the plants that had the poorest engagement scores. There were two other determinants of the selection process—critical mass and a readiness for change.

They spoke about the need to “speak the language of leaders,” the need to adopt a servant-leadership approach, and the need to get early wins to ensure that the plant leaders themselves bought into the process—all themes that recurred throughout the day.

Unconference

As a post-script, the organizers of this year’s conference added some innovative engagement processes under the banner of Unconference. These included game changer sessions, an Open Space session to explore those topics that had not been covered elsewhere, group mentoring for newcomers to the profession, as well as off-site experiences. And, of course, the evening closed with the annual Excellence Gala honoring the winners of the 2018 Gold Quill Awards for communication excellence.

About the author

Charmane Russell founded R&A Strategic Communications in 1999. The agency offers strategic counsel and implementation support on reputation management, communication and reporting strategies and human rights. R&A is niched in the natural resources sector with more than 35 clients in South Africa and abroad. Russell is the spokesperson for the South Africa Chamber of Mines. Previously, she headed up corporate communication for Anglo American, before she moved to AngloGold Limited when that company listed as a separate entity.

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