On Tuesday, April 22, 2014, Robin McCasland, International Board Chair for IABC visited Los Angeles chapter members at RGP’s offices in downtown Los Angeles. Our chapter members were treated to two outstanding presentations, both substantive in transparency about IABC headquarters and in content in “Who We Are, Where We Are, and What’s Next?”
“Communicators have evolved into facilitators of the conversation,” said McCasland. Robin also stated the take-notice fact that communicators, especially in the present glare of 24/7 media exposure, are now being viewed as professionals with highly skilled expertise in the same context doctors and lawyers are viewed professionally in respective careers.
Before Robin pulled us deep into the GPS of exactly what’s happening with communications’ professional and global trends. McCasland invited us into a transparent GPS operations-view of IABC Headquarters. IABC is now 70 countries/9 regions strong! With highest membership in the U.S. and Canada, the organization is expanding even further into Canada, Europe, Australia, Asia, South America, Middle East and Russia!
Robin worked closely with Ann Lazurus, Interim Executive Director of IABC, as well as several other “razor-focused” IABC execs dedicated to refreshing IABC and addressing multiple “thorny” issues. Task forces were created. Issues addressed include an extremely expensive headquarters’ lease to attracting new staff to eliminating or reducing extraordinary budget expenses.
IABC’s ancient website and ABC professional certification are being updated…Gold Quills process has been transformed and much more. IABC headquarters may transition to a virtual office, be moved locally or completely relocated. Members have positively praised new staff for their customer service and member focus! For Robin’s inside look at headquarters, please access YouTube audio links:
On global trends and the profession, Robin provided facts and figures in her Prezi presentation which are “waking up” other industries, viewing communications professionals as extremely necessary in today’s business world. See 2014 Edelman Trust Barometer.
McCasland stated, “Running a communications department today is like running a political campaign.” Social media, workplace environment, clients’ new power in shaping engaged information…and are you ready to respond to a crisis in five minutes? In the current climate as a pro communicator, you need to be. Stories are now told in visual images to evoke an emotional response to get customers or employees to take action.
Moving forward, IABC is looking at how the industry can create consistent standards in certification as a professional communicator both domestically and globally. The org is also exploring the value in creating courses and education for recent young college grads heading into business environments, yet without tools such as Ethics and Strategic Comms.
Huge thanks to Robin McCasland, FRSA, who took on a tremendous amount of responsibility as IABC’s IEB Chair when many would have backed away…and for giving the L.A. Chapter incredibly valuable information to support the chapter and our careers.
Big thanks to Vivien Hughes, Managing Director, Marketing, Communications & Media, and Chris Paik-Phong, Sr. Operations Manager, RGP (Resources Global Professionals), for allowing us to use the cool event space! She’s invited us to use it again at a later date.
Thanks to Dustin Alipour, VP, Events for catering help, and to Mike Spasoff, President-Elect for photos and tech help. And appreciative thanks to attendees for supporting these events: