Tag Archives: #createconnection

Creating the IABC Vision, Purpose and Philosophy

What an incredible conversation we had at Leadership Institute about updating the IABC vision, purpose, philosophy and value proposition. Any time you look at change, you always expect push back – not spontaneous applause! I think we are all ready to have a statement that is our rally cry and that will keep us on track – at our chapters, regions and at international.

When we got home from Dallas, Sharon Hunter and I recreated the white board on my office wall. We took the time to go through each note and reflect on how it might change the message. It made us aware of a few things that we needed to keep in mind:

  • Remember who the audience is for each statement: Different statements have different target audiences. We need to keep that in mind as we incorporate all the comments and create the next draft.

For example, the vision statement is for us. That statement needs to set out our ultimate goal as an association so that professional communicators know, in a moment, what IABC is trying to accomplish. That is why the statement, “a professional communicator at the heart of every business,” resonated with so many members. It is what IABC is trying to accomplish

However, the value proposition is for our external audience – perhaps a fellow communicator about why they should join, or a business leader on why they should support our involvement. It definitely needs to include the business value and expected outcome. Great input.

  • Combine the mission and purpose statements: There was agreement that having both was redundant and since we are trying to simplify, we will combine these into one statement of purpose.
  • Business communicator vs. professional communicator: should we align with the name of the organization or The Global Standard that we support? Since we are trying to establish the business value of what we bring to the marketplace, it’s probably better to support The Global Standard – so “professional communicator” or “communication professional” will be the language used.
  • Review the statements as a whole. Each statement does not need to contain all the facts. However, as a group, they should reflect who we are as an association – and hopefully, start a new conversation.

We want a vision, purpose, philosophy and value proposition that resonates with our members and becomes our rally cry. The world café showed us that the three areas of our proposed purpose statement – advance the profession, create connections and develop professionals – work for chapters, regions and international. Now we need to work on the words around them.

We got clear feedback that “a force for good” does not resonant with our international audience. We took that to heart and the phrase is now on the cutting room floor (basically, my office floor).

Contributing at the World Cafe for IABC’s vision and purpose statements.

This has been an incredible experience – from getting your input in every region on the Listening Tour, to our hands-on work at Leadership Institute. Your voices are in our heads. We will continue to brainstorm, edit and tweak away. Good governance dictates that an association review these statements every three to five years, in conjunction with a new strategy cycle. So check back for updates posted here. Chapter delegates will vote on any changes at the Annual General  Meeting at World Conference in Washington D.C.

In the meantime, if you have an idea or suggestion, please send it to us, ginger@ziacommunications.com. We are updating these statements as part of our work to develop the next three-year strategy. Below is a chart that shows how all the pieces interconnect.

Recording ideas to take home.
Recording ideas to take home.

Together we can align the vision, purpose and philosophy statements so they guide our actions for the future, help us see the opportunities and ultimately, deliver enduring value to our community.

Together we can align the vision, purpose and philosophy statements so they guide our actions for the future, help us see the opportunities and ultimately, deliver enduring value to our community.

Thanks for all you do.

How Everything Fits

Sharing, leading and succeeding: Reflections on Leadership Institute 2017

Time flies and we’re already back from Dallas and our Leadership Institute 2017! What an engaging and energizing event it was, as so many of you have said in your feedback.

Huge thanks to everyone who participated in making this year’s annual IABC leaders gathering so rewarding, and a stellar boost of motivation and connection. We hope that you left inspired with plenty of take-aways to put to work back home at your chapter or region.

Sharing insights, knowledge and good practices has always been the very essence of Leadership Institute. We hope you’ll keep the conversations going! Keep connecting with IABC members around the world who can help you achieve your goals. Remember those work plans from the World Café and the take-aways from the outstanding sessions to tee up action for your future-forward plans.

A highlight of Leadership Institute is recognizing outstanding achievement by our chapters and leaders in our celebration of the Chapter Management Awards.

During a special ‘L.I Reflections’ Leadership Forum yesterday our special guests were Claudia Miller, the 2017 Regional Leader of the Year and Will Tigley, president of IABC/Calgary, our 2017 International Chapter of the Year. They shared their success stories, learnings and tips for success. Watch the recording if you missed it.

Please join us in congratulating our 2017 CMA winners. The full list is here.

Also visit the Leader Centre online to view winning work plans and see the break-out presentations, too.

This week on the blog we’re going to post a series of informative recaps that can serve as a reminder for those who were there and motivate those of you who could not join us this year.

Thank you so much for your leadership, dedication and support and making our IABC better than ever!

All the best,

Dianne

Setting Our Path: IABC’s Vision

For the past three months Vice Chair Sharon Hunter and I have been on a listening tour. Members from every region shared what IABC, at its best, means to them. These insights, along with the member survey from last summer, will direct the creation of the 2017/2020 strategy.

A significant piece of that process is to reconfirm that IABC’s vision, mission, philosophy and purpose, outlined in our bylaws, still reflects who we are as an organization. After all, these statements serve as guardrails for our path forward. Not only will they guide the strategy, they guide how we conduct business and set the framework for how we will grow. Specifically, we are reviewing:

  • Vision: what success ultimately looks like for IABC
  • Mission: gives IABC focus by describing what business we are in
  • Philosophy: sets out the intentions of how IABC will operate – the core values that we hold dear
  • Purpose: expresses the impact we want to have on the people we serve

The philosophy was actually updated a couple of years ago when we adopted a new set of brand guidelines, which listed our shared values. These principles define the culture and behavior of our organization and members – so basically our philosophy of doing business. They are:

  • We represent the global profession.
  • We create connection.
  • We are a diverse community.
  • We focus on insights and results.

A big note of gratitude to Priya Bates and her Taskforce team for creating such a comprehensive guide.

Over the next few months we will be grappling with the vision, mission and purpose statements. Are they motivational, are they concise, do they represent what members say they want from IABC?

As we consider how to refine these statements so they truly become our rally cry, we will post updates here. Then chapter leaders will vote on any updates at the AGM meeting at World Conference in Washington D.C.

In the meantime, if you have an idea or suggestion, please send it to us, ginger@ziacommunications.com. Together we can align the vision, mission and purpose statements so they guide our actions for the future, help us see the opportunities and ultimately, deliver enduring value to our community.

Photo Caption: Pacific Plains Region participating in a Listening Session

IABC community discovers new possibilities in Columbus

That was the  theme of the Heritage Region Conference 2016, held in Columbus, Ohio Oct. 9-11  — says so much about our IABC. The conference was the living, breathing epitome of what is at the core of our professional communication community. It is our never ending commitment to elevating our professional and personal growth and discovering the possibilities for driving communication as a force for good in business and society.

The #IABCHRCONF world class level of speakers, presentations, programming, networking, professional development and, of course, Dine Around, is a testimony to the dedication and commitment of the Heritage Region leaders and evidence of the impact IABC is and will continue to make for our profession and members.

I was amazed at the level of positive energy and enthusiasm of the region and chapter leaders in Columbus, Ohio USA!

Pat Frey and Forrest Hughes, conference co-chairs
Forrest Hughes and Pat Frey, conference co-chairs

I must give specific shout outs to conference co-chairs Forrest Hughes and Pat Frey — both long time IABC leaders on many levels.

Thanks and congratulations to everyone who made this conference one to be emulated; including Region Chair Amy Miller and Silver Quill Chair Alexandra Hichel and the indescribably inspirational ball of enthusiasm, Columbus chapter president, Lachandra Baker.

I want to share a bit of the spirit with you and so I grabbed a few minutes with a past Heritage Region chair, Gary Spondike from Detroit, veteran IABC leader and presenter, Cyrus Mavalwala from Toronto and two conference attendees.

I hope you enjoy the snippets, absorb the IABC ‘secret sauce’ and pass it along.

Tuesday afternoon, IABC Vice Chair Sharon Hunter and I  wrapped up with our #IABC1720 World Cafe, part of our global conversation tour to build the next 3-year strategy for the association. Read more on this appreciative inquiry process here on the blog.

Thank you more than I can express for your dedication, leadership and support for our IABC.

I’d love to hear from you!

All the best,

Dianne

 

September Leadership Forum

Here we are on the cusp of October! Wow- time flies when you’re having fun and everyone is in high gear for our IABC. We’re entering a busy time of the IABC year with three region conferences and regional leadership institutes coming up in the next four weeks, along with the all-important October Membership Month which is going to be stellar this year!

For all the scoop check out our September Leadership Forum featuring our Awards Committee Chair, Lynn Barter, ABC.

Some important links and hashtags for you:

Also, please mark your calendars for the upcoming Leadership Forums. We’re staggering the times for these monthly conversations with leaders so as to engage as many time zones as possible with as little “pain” as possible. We definitely want you to get your sleep!

Here are the dates and times coming up:

26 October at 2 p.m. Pacific Time

16 November at 10 a.m. Pacific Time

14 December at 2 p.m. Pacific Time

25 January at 10 a.m. Pacific Time

In the meantime, please do reach out with any questions, input, suggestions, recommendations and insights. Your contributions are encouraged and most welcomed. Let’s #createconnection and #engage2excel like never before!

With deep appreciation for all you do for our IABC,

Dianne
chair@iabc.com

Bringing out the best in us: #IABC1720 Strategy sessions kickstart in Brussels today

Regional leaders launch our global conversation campaign to shape IABC’s next 3-year strategy at the Europe Middle East and North Africa (EMENA) leadership institute today.

  • What do you value most about IABC?
  • What works?
  • What do you want more of?
  • What brings life to our brand via the engagement and satisfaction you feel from being part of our professional communications community?

These questions frame the appreciative inquiry approach we’re using to create a shared vision of the future into 2020 and beyond.

Michael Nord, IEB member facilitating
Michael Nord, IEB member facilitating

Today we launch the discovery phase of this strategy process. It’s a global listening tour that will travel through a series of world cafes at regional conferences, leadership institutes and select chapter events over the next few months.

These sessions aim to engage our community to explore the best of what we are with an eye toward what more we could be.

Nikki Edwards, EMENA Chair
Nikki Edwards, EMENA Chair

IABC runs on a rolling three-year strategy cycle.  The #IABC1417 strategy closes out this year.  This new plan for 2017-20 will kick-off at World Conference in Washington, DC. Mark your calendars for 11-14 June 2017!
Alex Malouf
Alex Malouf, EMENA Vice Chair

The new plan will look to capitalize on gains, strive for continuity and build for the future based on the foundational assets we’ve secured. This is thanks to the prudent work of our predecessors. We managed a turnaround these last years through a focus on financial recovery and sustainability.  This guiding principle is one that we will commit to maintain moving forward.

Next steps will include a master session at the International Leadership Institute in Dallas, Texas happening February 23-25 2017.  Save the date!  The board will then review three iterations of the new plan before it lands at the AGM next June.

It is the Vice Chair’s role to lead this process. It’s a duty I’m honored to advance in collaboration with co-author Ginger Homan, ABC, IABC Secretary/Treasurer, Chair Dianne Chase and the Executive Committee, the entire board and all who will bring their passion and ideas forward to help us along. I thank you all for the time and energy that you will bring to this community effort.

Follow #IABC1720 for tweets coming out of EMENA today. Fellow IEB member Michael Nord is leading an inspired group including Nikki Edwards, EMENA Chair, Alex Malouf, Vice Chair and dedicated leaders from across the region.

Check back here often for ongoing updates. The conversation will continue through sessions in Heritage, Southern and Pacific Plains regions in October, South Africa in November and other area events to follow.

Have an idea, question or experience to share? Email vicechair@iabc.com – we’re listening!

With appreciation for all that you do,

Sharon Hunter, Vice Chair

 

#IABCLI Thanks – and an invitation to attend the February IABC Leadership Forum

We just closed the 2016 International Leadership Institute. Thanks to all who came in person, from near and far. And all who engaged via #IABCLI. It is great to see such global connection in action.

Micayla Felicion-Davin
Micayla Felicion-Davin
Dianne Chase
Dianne Chase

It was a highly interactive, engaging – and ultimately inspiring event. I’m extremely grateful to the Council of Regions, chaired by Dianne Chase – and Chapter Relations Manager, Micayla Felicion-Davin, for their work putting together the programme. An effort that couldn’t have been pulled off without our hard working staff. Big thanks to them too.

Now with fond farewells come an opportunity for a fresh hello. We’re getting the band together again–and soon: the February Leadership Forum is upon us. We’ll recap what happened at the Leadership Institute and take a quick look at the latest Quarterly Report.

Plus special guests

When & Where

Wednesday 17 February: 2pm PST / 5pm EST / 10pm London / 9am Sydney (Thur)
Click here for time zone conversions in your part of the world.

How to connect

The Leadership Forum will be a Google Hangout. If you have a Google+ account, just join IABC there to participate. If you don’t have a Google+ account, just tune into YouTube, where it will be broadcasting live.

The video will be available to view after the call on the Leadership Forum Playlist on IABCLive if you’re unable to watch at the time.

We also always post notes from these sessions.

Interact

You’re welcome to submit questions prior to the call on the IABC Chapter Leader Group on LinkedIn. During the call, if you’re in Google+, you’ll be able to participate through the Q&A feature. If you don’t have a Google+ account, you can add a comment to the YouTube view, or you can tweet using the hashtag #IABCieb.

Let’s #createconnection – like never before.

Michael Ambjorn
@michaelambjorn

 

December Leadership Forum: Finance & Brand

The fourth IABC Leadership Forum was pulled together from across three continents: Carlos was in Montréal, Dianne in Clinton, Ginger in Tulsa and Priya in Toronto. I was in London – and Melissa helped with the Q&A from Melbourne.

Here’s the replay:

Special Q&A guests

Finance

Ginger Homan
Ginger Homan
Carlos Fulcher
Carlos Fulcher

On this edition we were joined by IABC Treasurer, Ginger Homan, ABC.

Ginger has been working closely with Carlos Fulcher to create a balanced 2016 budget for IABC – including essential strategic technology investments including:

  • An updated Association Management System – to better serve staff and leaders – in line with our theory of change
  • A Learning Management System for the IABC Academy – to better serve those seeking professional development through IABC – in line with our mission

Additional strategic investment is going into better serving our Corporate Members – and short-term improvements are also being made to the current member management system (MMA).

Our association is still working through the aftermath of ten years of underinvestment in this area. Progress is being made.

One further major financial item to note is the $300K+ cost reduction we will be realising through moving our offices. Carlos briefly spoke to this at the end of the call.

Brand

Priya Bates
Priya Bates

Past Chair of the IABC Brand Task Force, Priya Bates, ABC, MC, joined for a Q&A on the brand roll-out.

Priya’s key messages:

  • It is great to see so many chapter adopting the brand so fast – some are still to pick it up though. Help is available… just ask.
  • Whatever you do visually: keep it simple.
  • And remember, the brand is more than the logo – use all of it – see the Brand Toolkit.

A practical, actionable element of the latter which you can RT:

Quick overview of the further topics covered

Dianne Chase
Dianne Chase

Dianne Chase shared a look ahead to #IABCLI – aka –  the 2016 Leadership Institute. We look forward to seeing you there. Dianne also shared the latest top  growth chapters – impressive and encouraging: 

Large Chapters

Edmonton 26%

Medium Chapters

Canberra 15%

Small Chapters

Switzerland 40%  

Well done. 

Also big thanks to all who participated in the IABC Leadership Survey that just closed. We’ll look closer at the insights early next year. Meanwhile,  Gold Quill is well underway. Here’s your toolkit.    

…and, also topical – a reminder from the Past Chair:   

 


Q&A Highlights

Question from Sheila Carruthers from Calgary: In addition to IABC working on corporate discount offerings, will there be consideration to offer discounts at LI and conferences for independent consultant members and individuals who pay their own membership fees?

Answer: Check out the scholarships for LI in the first instance – Ginger also offered to connect offline to talk more.

Question from Maliha Aqeel from Toronto: Are there any plans for HQ to conduct a brand compliance audit?

Answer: The recent Leader Survey had a set of questions around brand adoption – we will share more on that early next year.

Question from Gay Flashman from London:  Is there any way in which we can share our original blog & social content between chapters for use on local IABC channels?

Answer: The Editorial Committee has been charged with creating a global conversation calendar that can help facilitate this. Watch this space.

Last but not least, I shared a brief update on my recent #IABCAPAC trip. Here’s a decent summary of how I felt after – fuller notes will be filed in the usual place.

Thanks to all who connected – and you don’t have to wait until next month to get a question answered. Just head over to the IABC Chapter Leaders Group on LinkedIn and pitch in.

Let’s #createconnection – like never before.

Michael Ambjorn

 

December ’15 Board Meeting

The IABC International Executive Board – aka #IABCieb – recently held its seventh board meeting of this term and here’s a quick recap of what was on the table in addition to the usual reports from the Chair; Vice Chair Dianne Chase (with a specific focus on the work of the Council of Regions); Financials from Treasurer Ginger Homan ABC and last definitively but not least, the report from our Executive Director, Carlos Fulcher MBA CAE.

The 2014—2017 strategy says, in a paragraph:

“Financial recovery and sustainability is primary, as is the loyalty and development of our members and leaders and consolidating gains from the 2011-14 strategy. Increased reputation in the profession; better brand positioning; and greater interaction with business as a revenue generator are then the big opportunity to be grasped”.

Financial Recovery and Sustainability

Ginger Homan
Ginger Homan
Carlos Fulcher
Carlos Fulcher
Brook Yciano
Brook Yciano

At this board meeting the board reviewed the Finance Committee’s proposed 2016 balanced budget – including a set of strategic investments in:

  • Association Management System (AMS)
  • Learning Management System (LMS)
  • Office relocation costs

The latter will ultimately yield a saving of $350,000 in its first year.

The first two are essential steps in our continuing work to make up for ten years of underinvestment in technology. I am pleased to report that the board unanimously adopted the budget. Big thanks to Treasurer, Ginger Homan ABC,  Executive Director, Carlos Fulcher MBA CAE and Finance Director, Brook Yciano – and all of the hard working Finance Committee.

The board also reviewed progress reports from Audit & Risk, Policy ReviewAcademy and the Global Communication Certification Council.

Loyalty and development of our members and leaders

Dianne Chase
Dianne Chase
Micayla Felicion-Davin
Micayla Felicion-Davin

Once a year we bring IABC’s top international leaders together. IABC Vice Chair Dianne Chase shared an update on the preparations for this with help from the Council of Regions and Micayla Felicion on staff.

See the full programme – and register.

Connect with others going: #IABCLI – and if you haven’t been to one before, why not check out some of the photos from last year’s Leadership Institute?

Better brand positioning

In line with the focusing in on Strategic Advisors as the core audience for IABC, the board was pleased to learn that the Global Communication Certification Council has decided, after considerable deliberation, to pursue that level as the next Certification. Stay tuned for more on this in 2016.

Greater interaction

I reported how, as Chair, I was honoured to join 32 IABC Leaders from across Asia-Pacific who met for the first Leadership Institute in the APAC region since 2012 – and the first since the formation of the APAC Region Board. The event was hugely successful and offered a balanced mix of workshops, educational sessions, networking opportunities and social events.

 

This was in addition to 40+ engagements in 7 cities across 14 back-to-back days on the road. Our leaders in APAC are nothing if not ambitious on behalf of IABC’s leadership. This included advocacy opportunities with:

  • Five government departments, a major police force and other public service bodies
  • Australia and New Zealand’s biggest banks, a cellular operator, an insurer, a financial institution, a major engineering firm, and more…

You can read what I learnt on this – and other trips – in the Field Notes section of this blog. So many to thank – esp: Leanne Joyce, Zora Artis, Monika Lancucki ABC, Damien Batey, Mike Shaw, Kathryn Britt, Yvonne DensemJennifer Andrewes and John Tulloch + the amazing and unstoppable Kirsten Peterson.

Let’s #createconnection like never before.

Michael Ambjorn

 

Places to #createconnection

At IABC, we connect communicators to a global and local network, career opportunities, resources and knowledge – using communication to engage, influence, counsel and execute.

One of the most tangible ways we do this is through our events programme, which runs throughout the world. Here’s a roundup of what’s coming for communicators in general, and for our leaders specifically.

Where to develop your communication skills

Local

Check your local website for events coming up – and don’t forget, if you’re on the road, you’re welcome to attend events in other cities. For example, if you’re in London September 23, come along to ‘Making Global Communications Work‘.

Prefer the shorthand of Twitter? IABC Detroit maintains a handy list that allows you to keep the finger on the pulse of 70+ chapters around the world.

Regional

Conferences run throughout the world and across the year – London and Johannesburg earlier this year and here are three more coming up:

  • Calgary – ‘High Octane’ – 15-17 October 2015
  • Denver – ‘Taking it to the extreme’ – 15-18 October 2015
  • Baltimore – ‘Re:ignite’ – 18-20 October 2015

Dianne Chase, IABC Vice Chair, will attend the Canada East conference in Calgary – and I am honoured by the invitation to close the Southern Region conference in Denver. Carlos Fulcher and I will also run a highly interactive workshop and meet with the #IABC16 Programme Advisory Committee – and then it is straight onto Baltimore to open up the Heritage Region conference. Hope to see you there.

Global

Missed #IABC15? Worry not: The new Best of Show webinar series is a global virtual learning experience that takes the highest rated sessions from the World Conference and brings them directly to you.

The program builds on the success of this year’s event and offers participants access to the best presentations from 2015’s conference. For those who have never attended an IABC World Conference, it provides the opportunity to preview the kind of high-quality learning to be expected at World Conference.

If you're an IABC leader, get the Best of Show marketing toolkit on the Leader Centre
If you’re an IABC leader, get the Best of Show marketing toolkit on the Leader Centre
Mark your calendar for World Conference in 2016!

And if you’ve got what it takes to speak at our flagship event of the year, get your pitch in now. Want some advice from previous speakers first? Check out this exchange on our LinkedIn group (and add your own advice too).

Where to hone your leadership skills

Local

Even though the 2015-16 board year is well underway, your local Chapter board might very well be looking for an extra hand. Reach out to them. There’s nothing like hands-on practical experience.

Regional

Klavs Valskov
Klavs Valskov

The Europe, Middle East and North Africa (EMENA) Region is running a Leadership Institute in Basel, Switzerland at the end of this month. Regional Chair Klavs Valskov is pulling out all the stops for this one and Dianne Chase will be participating to take input for the ongoing work to implement our three year strategy – aka – #IABC1417. The conferences mentioned in the section above also have a Leadership Institute element, which will have leadership attendance. Carlos Fulcher, our Executive Director, and I are also excited to be participating in a workshop with the Programme Advisory Committee for the 2016 World Conference – #IABC16.

Ron Fuchs APR
Ron Fuchs APR

The EMENA event is kindly hosted by #IABCieb member Ron Fuchs APR from Roche. A great example of how members often leverage organisational support to help advance the profession – and in this case the leadership within the association.

Global

The annual International Leadership Institute – #IABCLI – will be in Los Angeles, February 4-6, 2016 – again, one for the calendar.  Looking forward to seeing you there.

Let’s #createconnection – like never before.

Michael Ambjorn

P.S. As an IABC leader, need some practical tools and templates to advance your work? Log into the Leader Centre where you’ll find a whole library of useful information:

  • Brand Toolkit
    Information and resources for IABC’s brand
  • Awards
    Develop your local chapter awards programs
  • Finance
    IABC’s financial management guidelines
  • Governance
    High level tips and tools for board support, encouraging volunteerism and documentation
  • Marketing
    Market your chapter and IABC membership in your community
  • Membership
    Membership marketing made easy
  • Professional Development
    A guide to event planning, budgeting and management
  • Sponsorship
    Generate revenue for your chapter through sponsorship