Presidents Update to Members – Feb. 2011

I hope 2011 has started well for you. We’re halfway through the IABC-LA Board year, so here is a quick report on what we’ve accomplished so far, as well as a call to action for members.

Leading the IABC-LA Board this year, I understand that our main job boils down to providing value for membership. So far this year we’ve overhauled/modernized the website, created a social media and networking presence, started new, completely-free-to-members networking events and brought in high-caliber speakers across the L.A. region.

I know that I speak for the entire Board when I say that we are excited about the direction the Chapter is going, and we’re having fun making it happen.  I hope you’re finding value from your membership, too.

If you’re interested in getting more value, consider getting involved in one of these 4 ways:

Face-to-Face Events

Our updated calendar of events is here.  We have events planned every month through June (starting up again in September).  Please join us at one or more of these events – if you haven’t attended in the past, we hope you’ll come and discover for yourself why IABC-L.A. is known as one of the friendliest professional associations around. Our culture is one of collegiality rather than competition.

March Membership Month – refer a friend or colleague

If you’d like to see colleagues, friends or peers benefit from IABC, too, refer them to IABC-LA now – their registration fees will be waived through the end of March, and you’ll have a chance to win a Flip Camera as a thank you! Find out more here. We’ll be posting further updates and information over the next 6 weeks.

Connect on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook

To build on the camaraderie that develops at our in-person events, please connect with IABC-LA on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn. Please choose your preferred outlet so it’s easy to stay up to date on events, find old friends, ask for help or provide advice.  Our Social Media Chairs share information regularly and facilitate discussions, so even if you do not attend our face-to-face events, you can start to make meaningful connections with people.

Volunteer Opportunities

We could use your help! There are many benefits to volunteering – developing deeper relationships with peers, staying in the game while in transition, gaining experience or skills outside of your career specialty.  Please take a look at our ‘wish list‘ and see if anything sounds like you.  There are small jobs, big jobs and projects, all ready for you to make your mark.  You’ll most likely become lifetime friends with some of your fellow volunteers (no joke; ask Bill Spaniel or some of our other longstanding members).

I hope that one of the four options above appeals to you and look forward to connecting with you as a fellow member either virtually or face-to-face before the end of June!

Paula Cassin

IABC-LA President, 2010-11

Membership Month is Around the Corner!

As an IABC member, you know the benefits of belonging to a worldwide network of communication professionals. Why not help our network grow by encouraging your friends and colleagues to join IABC-LA. When they join in March, we’ll waive their application fee.

It gets better – for every person you refer who joins IABC-LA from March 1 -31, your name will be entered in a drawing to win a free Flip Camera. Isn’t it time you enhanced your social media efforts with video?

We’ll be sending you details about Member Month over the next weeks. In the meantime, start thinking about friends and business associates who may want to grow their network through IABC-LA.

P.S. Tell your colleagues they’ll save when they join IABC-LA in March !

To South Bay Members – this one is for you

This year the IABC LA volunteer Board decided to include two networking events completely FREE to members as an experiment.

Members pay $55 a year and we thought it made sense to give some of it directly back by fully funding some events. Our first networking event was held in Pasadena in November (and went pretty well) – now it’s South Bay’s turn to have an easy drive. Please join us!

Friends, non-members, students are all welcome, too – you’ll see there’s a nominal cost (below).

IABC Los Angeles invites you to a culinary journey through Italy while networking with your peers – business communications professionals from a variety of companies and organizations. Connect with experts in PR, crisis communications, marketing, corporate communications, writing and social media.

Bring your business cards and a friend and join other communications professionals at the authentic Italian, Il Fornaio, Manhattan Beach location. Less than 5 minutes from the 405!

REGISTER HERE

Date: Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Time:  6:30 PM – 9:00 PM

Location: Il Fornaio 1800 Rosecrans Avenue Manhattan Beach, CA 90266

Cost

Free to any current IABC member from any Chapter
$20.00 non-members
$10.00 students with valid ID

RSVP: February 25, 2011

Parking: Free parking in adjacent lot.

REGISTER HERE

Members: want to judge the 2011 IABC Gold Quill ””Writing Category”” entries?

Bill Spaniel, ABC, is coordinating the writing category entries for the 2011 IABC Gold Quill Awards and invites you to be part of the judging panel for 2011. The panel will conduct judging from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Feb. 12 in Santa Clarita, Calif. Should judging not be completed on all entries at that time, he will host an additional round of judging on Feb. 26 at the same location.
Volunteering as a judge is a prestigious and important role. Becoming a Gold Quill judge provides an unrivaled development opportunity, as you review and learn from some of the best work in the industry. As a judge, you are responsible for upholding the standards and reputation that has made Gold Quill the world’s most respected standard for communication excellence.

If you would like to sign up as a judge for either or both of the above dates, contact Bill at bill.spaniel@calcpa.org.

For more details on the program, go to www.iabc.com/awards/gq

First Event for 2011 – Pasadena, Jan 27th – IABC After Dark

Happy New Year! Get a jump on your resolutions by joining us for our first IABC/LA event of 2011. We’ll be at redwhite+bluezz in Pasadena, the city the world turns to every January to ring in the new year.  red white & bluezz screenshot

This is an IABC/LA “After Dark” no-host event (translation: food and drinks are on your own), where you can connect with your fellow communicators, expand your network and enjoy a little cheer.

 Date: Thursday, January 27, 2011

Time:  5:30 PM – 7:00 PM

Location:  redwhite+bluezz
70 S. Raymond Avenue
Pasadena, CA 91105
Cross Street: Green Street
(626) 792-4441

Cost: 
Free admission to any current IABC member from any chapter
$10.00 non-members

RSVP Deadline:  January 27, 2011 at 5:00 p.m.

Parking:  Nearby public parking lots are free for 90 minutes and $2 per hour after that.

Notes:  The Happy Hour menu is available until 6 p.m. and live jazz begins at 6:30 p.m.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

Upcoming Web Seminars – Free to IABC Members

Did you know that IABC International offers a series of free webinars to members? I figured you might have missed it, as there is such a wealth of information available. Here’s the schedule as it stands today and the link IABC International page:

Communicating change: The emotional journey
presented by Adrian Cropley, ABC, Cropley Communication
19 January 2011

Telling stories: Captivate your audience and spread your message
presented by Donna Papacosta, Trafalgar Communications
23 March 2011

When the headline is you: An insider’s guide to handling the media
presented by Jeff Ansell, Jeff Ansell & Associates Inc.
25 May 2011

TBD
presented by TBD
13 July 2011

Creating a job search strategy for communicators
presented by Angee Linsey
8 September, 2011

TBD
presented by TBD
9 November 2011

Click here to go to the Web Seminar page if you’d like to check for updated links – you’ll find the Free-to-Member events about halfway down!

Murder Mystery Holiday Luncheon 2010

 

IABC-LA’s annual holiday teas have been truly lovely and held in beautiful tearooms over the last few years…however, there was a chalk mark drawn around the still body of the tea concept this year in favor of something entirely newand unique: A Holiday Murder Mystery Luncheon! 

How well does a Murder Mystery go with the holidays? Only ZorroClaus, a wisecracking “LAPD detective” and crime-solving IABC members them-elves could participate in such twists and turns at The Porterhouse Bistro in Beverly Hills on December 11, 2010.  And yes, the demise of some “victims” was brought on by our own members (see video attached).  Who was involved and why?  Besides inspired event coordination by Myra Jolivet (who brought up the idea originally), with assistance by Christie Ly and Christopher Cabrera, a secret source supplied information about some chapter members to the host of the interactive Murder Mystery to create intrigue, heavy laughs, red herrings and fun.

The L.A. Chapter maintained its commitment and passion to communications as bodies fell from being “shot”, “stabbed” or “poisoned.”  Chapter member Bill Spaniel donned his baseball caps in Sherlock Holmes style and used his delightful wit as one of the crime-solvers. Bill also reminded us of the upcoming judging opportunities for The Gold Quill Awards.  Rebecca Mikkelsen and chapter President, Paula Cassin, reiterated how much we learn from the entries in participating as a Gold Quill Judge…with terrific networking opportunities professionally and personally. (Rebecca and I have become wonderful friends since pairing up as Gold Quill judging partners last January.  I later joined Rebecca’s social media team for the chapter this year.)  Rebecca and Stephen Cassin also participated kindly as our mystery host threw questions at us about what we know about these two possible suspects. 

We enjoyed our four-course luncheon of gourmet food and wine while catching up with members. Later, Julie Fornaro, our new website’s mastermind, read from a suspiciously-dropped business card “Hits-R-Us” while a wisecracking “LAPD detective” threaded the mounting clues throughout the interactive plot… including a Santa hat with a sword poked through a note from “ZorroClaus.”  Otherwise hard-working Chapter President Paula Cassin revealed herself as “ZorroClaus” …and Keeping Up with the Kardashians..well, sort of…having much fun distributing “stolen” cash and presents.  Kerry Bonner sported her bright and cheery red jacket during the event’s pre-luncheon cocktails…only to “wear a knife” and create some great laughs during her “death scene.” Bill Spaniel, David Schmidt, Gail Herring, Chris Cabrera and Stephen Cassin were terrific sports against the detective’s banter. Chapter crime-solvers also included Mauria McPoland, Marsha Webster, Louvenia Austin, Elodie Khavarani , Susan Delgadillo and Pamela Corante-Hansen…all suspects until proven innocent. Cheryl Farrell had some serious explaining to do…which led to some hilarious communications and “battle scene” antics between the detective and Cheryl.  

Congrats to Ariela Iringan and Briana Sharp who were the closest in figuring out the details, motives and storyline when everyone paired up to solve the crimes.  Our host proclaimed the rest of us as not-yet-detective-ready in our “pathetic” attempts to solve the motives behind the secrets.  We enjoy solving communications issues…or bad puns like “Nobody Does It Deader.”

Chris Cabrera of Southern California Edison and Paula Cassin, presented a $500 donation check to our chapter’s guest, Gina Quesenberry, Librarian at the El Monte Library in support of the El Monte Library’s programs that reach children, teens and adults.  We were delighted to have Gina take part in our mystery while being a gracious and good-humored recipient toward our chapter’s commitment to supporting our communities.  Chris Cabrera also stated that Southern California Edison is making a donation of 85 books to enhance the library’s materials towards further support.

Warm thanks to Myra Jolivet, Christie Ly, and Chris Cabrera for putting their distinct and creative fingerprints all over this memorable event.  Acting nods to Paula, Kerry and Cheryl…for hilarious comedic “drama” and our thanks again to The Porterhouse Bistro actors and staff who put some holiday crackle into our tongue-in-cheek event.

Don’t Trust Anyone…

Join us for the Holiday Party – Who Will Be “Knocked Off?”

What’s this?? I’ve just found out that one of our members is going to be ‘knocked off’ at our Holiday Party…

A secret source told me that he’s working with the Murder Mystery actors, and not only will we have a fun ‘whodunit’ to solve, but corporate communications and IABC LA Chapter shenanigans will come into play.

The Board (especially Myra and Christie) have put in a lot of work to create an event that we believe will be great for networking, great for your stomachs (4 course meal) and great for the spirit (lots of laughs and camaraderie).  We decided to try something new this year (breaking from our afternoon tea tradition), and hope you will like it as much as we anticipate.

Please join us if you can.

We’ve kept the price very low (below cost, as we’re supplementing with Chapter funds and sponsorships), so it’s a great opportunity to experience a Murder Mystery for very little. We encourage you to bring family or friends along!

Here are details for you:

SATURDAY, December 11th, 2010

Porterhouse Bistro in Beverly Hills.

Networking Reception: 12:30 – 1:30PM
The “Murders” Begin: 1:30 – 3:30PM

Register for A Holiday Murrrderrr Mystery Matinee with IABC-LA! in Beverly Hills, CA  on Eventbrite

Valet Parking is $5, limited street parking also available.



October 26th, 2010…IABC-Los Angeles presented “An Entertaining Evening with Sony Pictures Global Communications”

 

Imagine developing integrated global employee messaging to 140 countries. Or creating a fun, interactive worldwide online employee scavenger hunt to find “Salt.” Or pondering what Jimmy Stewart would think of solar panels on his namesake Sony lot building.
 
IABC-LA members packed the Thalberg screening room in Culver City on the historic Sony lot to hear how Sony approaches its external media and integrated internalmedia campaigns. IABC-LA Board Member Myra Jolivet, event coordinator and presenter host, introduced Jim Kennedy, Executive Vice President, Global Communications, Erica Netzley, Vice President, Employee Communications, and Helen Porter, Director, Employee Communications for an inside look at how the Japanese-based company keeps a global focus through its diverse media divisions. The Sony panel covered internal, external, corporate social responsibility and employee meetings and events.

Kennedy discussed how home entertainment has evolved with changing consumer habits. (BlueRay is hot!) Meanwhile, Sony expands further into Russia, China and India where movie audiences are the fastest growing.  Kennedy noted “Movies still remain one of the most cost effective means of entertainment” for individuals. External communications strategies also include building up environmental responsibility, as well as the current popularity of 3-D movies.

Kennedy and Netzley emphasized Sony’s commitment to a creative, casual culture, while Kennedy stated the company is not a factory.

While all Sony employees access the recently launched “my SPE” (Sony Pictures Entertainment) for worldwide internal news and interactivity, Netzley discussed sharing the 30,000 ft. view from above through a still-hard-copy-printed quarterly newsletter. The quarterly educates employees across Sony divisions including Imageworks, Screen Gems, Columbia Pictures and more.  Global employee communications include a Q&A from division execs to take a “deep dive” into the inner workings of each division. A weekly “Sweeps” newsletter has been transitioned from print to e-newsletter. Erica and Helen noted Sony employees were currently not interested in using social media on the employee site, yet this is a topic that will be revisited.

Netzley and Porter discussed the importance of “my SPE” and “SPE Life” as “Cool…new…fun…and on the lot.” This casual, accessible strategy allows Sony employees to enjoy video clips of Sony Co-Chairs Michael Lynton and Amy Pascal discussing, for example, a current tv show with great humor. “My SPE” also includes video clips of employees’ jobs all over the Sony world.

There was a tremendous emphasis on being, acting and staying environmentally friendly as Sony transforms its culture as a worldwide globally green leader. The “My SPE” dedicated green home page communicates pilot composting programs, earth days, beach cleaning days, transforming sets for reuse, and much more. Culver City employees have influenced green behavior resulting in 99% of Sony waste being diverted from landfills. And Sony’s movie productions are now receiving awards for green behavior.

IABC members enjoyed a substantive Q&A with the panel at the end of the presentation, and then continued the conversation at the “After Dark” event at Culver City’s “BottleRock Wine Bar” for some loud(!) lively wine and beer networking at a record turnout.

Big applause and thanks to Myra Jolivet and the engaging Sony presenters for such an informative inside look!