October IABC Leadership Forum: Basel, Baltimore, Calgary, Denver, LA, Rotterdam, NOLA…

ByMichael Ambjorn

October IABC Leadership Forum: Basel, Baltimore, Calgary, Denver, LA, Rotterdam, NOLA…

Carlos Fulcher

Carlos Fulcher MBA CAE

Dianne Chase

Dianne Chase

Melissa Dark ABC

Melissa Dark ABC

We did the second IABC Leadership Forum on the road: Carlos and I broadcast from the stage at the Heritage Region Conference in Baltimore and Dianne checked in from Charlotte, fresh back from the Canada West conference in Calgary – and Melissa helped with the Q&A from San Francisco.

You can watch the replay here:

It was a great session, but don’t just take my word for it:

Mary Foshage

Mary Foshage

‘Love this! Am going to encourage our whole board to join.’ – Mary Foshage, VP Marketing IABC St. Louis

Quick overview of the topics covered

All of the following was interspersed with Q&A – see a run-down of the questions at the end – and the Leadership Forum is all about creating connection between leaders, hence all the people are hyperlinked in case you want to follow up.

Welcome, brief introductions

Camille Downing

Camille Downing

The core team (above) + special guest Camille Downing who joined to share an update from the Heritage Region conference which gathered a strong contingent of communicators from across the East Coast of the US – and even a couple of Canadians.


Conferences around the world

High Octane

Dianne Chase, IABC Vice Chair, reported from the Canada West Conference in Calgary – chaired by Master Communicator Karen Lee ABC.

Carlos Fulcher MBA CAE, our Executive Director reflected on the opportunity he and I had to meet with leaders at the Southern Region Conference in Denver – aka #IABCextreme.

Chaired by long-time IABC leader Sherry Boyd and hosted by  Regional Chair Julie Ludwig it was a great event – and great adoption of the new IABC brand platform. If you’re still on the brand adoption journey, do look for the great toolkit here – including logos for your chapter. 

You can find the notes from the workshop Carlos and I facilitated here: an extreme reading / listening list – collated by your global peers.

During the Forum we also talked about Eurocomm which took place in London this April (chaired by Michael Nord) and the Europe, Middle East and North Africa Region’s plans for Rotterdam early next year. Hope to see you there.

One more conference date for your diary: #IABC16 in New Orleans 5-8 June 2016wc.iabc.com/ – the early bird will open soon. Stay tuned (and do mark up your calendar already).

Leaders connecting around the world

We discussed the top issues coming out of Leadership Institutes in Denver and Baltimore in the days before this session  – and also input from the Europe, Middle East and North Africa (EMENA) and Southern Africa Leadership Institutes earlier in the year. There’s some great practice being shared out there.

Missing out? Connect with nearby chapters, be sure to reach out to your region – and be sure to attend key leader events.

Micayla Felicion MBA

Micayla Felicion MBA

On the latter point, Dianne shared an update from the Council of Regions which is working hard with Micayla Felicion MBA on staff to prep for the 2016 International Leadership Institute in Los Angeles – and with that the opportunity to share good practice – and get recognised. How? Through the Chapter Management Awards.

International leaders in action

IMAGINE - 2015 IABC Gold QuillMelissa Dark ABC did a show and tell on the marketing toolkit which has been prepared to assist you with promoting Gold Quill in your chapter or region.

Carlos talked through how the opportunity to take the Communication Management Professional Certification is coming to cities around the world. From Sydney to Cincinnati – and a fair few places in between. See all the dates here. And meet the hard-working team behind all this.

I touched on the work of the Communications Committee and other topics from the October International Executive Board meeting. Further notes from that meeting available here. I also briefly touched on the Leader Survey (now underway) and the forthcoming Member Survey (2016), progress on the recent call for nominations – and the calls coming up later in the year.

Your questions answered

As mentioned above, we interspersed all of this with lots of Q&A

Here’s a quick run-down of those that came in during the session (in the order they came up – interspersed into the running order set out above):

  1. Maliha Aqeel

    Maliha Aqeel

    Question from Maliha Aqeel from Toronto: You had mentioned pricing and exchange rates earlier. Has IEB given any thought to charging prices for Academy courses in local currency, i.e., Canadian Dollars, Pound Sterling, etc. instead of US dollars only?

    Answer: Great question Maliha – we currently have the ability for people to pay membership in a number of currencies. We’ll look into broadening that for other items. Do also keep an eye out for more on the word done by the Membership Task Force which is also looking at pricing and affordability in partnership with the Finance Committee.
  2. Casilda Malagon

    Casilda Malagon

    Question from Casilda Malagon from London: Can you talk a bit more about the Chapter Management Awards? Any advice for leaders considering applying for the first time?

    Answer: Thanks for asking Casilda. Do check out the 2015 CMA winners (and review their winning entries). CMA-winning entries can be fantastic guides for chapters looking for fresh ideas and methods. You can also review winning entries from 2014 and 2013.

  3. Judy Iannaccone

    Judy Iannaccone

    Question from Judy Iannaccone from Orange County: Has IABC leadership heard about any chapters that are having great success with student chapters? Are there any best practices that chapters should be aware of?

    Answer: Great question Judy – and whilst IABC’s core market is the Strategic Advisor path from the IABC Career Roadmap (scroll to get to it) – we know that many top-performing chapters have the ability to support to students at the local level too. At the recent Leadership Institutes we came across lots of good practice, including partnering with faculty and also mentoring programmes. Have a look at what Houston, London and Toronto are doing.

  4. Maliha Aqeel

    Maliha Aqeel

    Question from Maliha Aqeel from Toronto: Will the location of the Chapter Leaders sub-group change now that LinkedIn is discontinuing the sub-groups feature?

    Answer: The IABC Chapter Leader Group on LinkedIn is a great place to share good practice – and get input from peers. Melissa has the full answer on the changes here.

  5. Tami Wendt

    Tami Wendt

    Question from Tami Wendt from Minneapolis: Regarding events, are you aware of any development opportunities in November or December.

    Answer: Yes, lots:  iabc.com/events/ – and if you happen to be in Sydney, I hope to see you at the APAC Leadership Institute.

  6. Casilda Malagon

    Casilda Malagon

    Question Casilda Malagon from LondonWe love the marketing toolkits Melissa! Very useful. Any others planned for the next of year?

    Answer: Thanks Casilda – that’s great to hear and yes, plenty more coming. We know there’s strong demand for a kit for Certification as one example. Keep an eye on the Leader Letter which hits your inbox at the end of every month (and if it is not, do reach out).

  7. Casilda Malagon

    Casilda Malagon

    Question from Casilda Malagon from LondonIs the new form to become a member online up and running?

    Answer: It is! iabc.com/join – and as you may have seen, we’ve extended the October incentives into November.
  8. Mary Foshage

    Mary Foshage

    Comment from Mary Foshage from St. Louis: A calendar would be nice! Especially for web events.

    Answer: Here you go Mary: iabc.com/events/
    Got an event to add? Log on to the Leader Centre and share it here.

That’s it for this time around – see you again on the November Leadership Forum. Got a question and can’t wait? Head over to the IABC Chapter Leader Group on LinkedIn and we’ll get right to it.

Thanks for all you do.

Let’s #createconnection – like never before.

Michael Ambjorn


About the author

Michael Ambjorn administrator

Michael is a past chair of the International Association of Business Communicators. He is also founder of Align Your Org where – with a participation-centric approach – he and his colleagues enable effective strategic planning, communication – and clarity of execution. He has held leadership roles at IBM, Motorola and the 260–year–old Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce. A consummate connector, speaker, facilitator - and mentor - he is also active in a number of further networks. You can follow him @michaelambjorn

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