Making a difference with IABC

iabc-gibson-schumann Even thought it’s Wednesday and mid week, my mind is still full of thoughts about an amazing long weekend that concluded for me yesterday after a whirlwind 10,700-mile round trip to San Francisco and the IABC 2009 World Conference.

As the conference ends today, many people’s thoughts will be on the coming year and what it heralds for the communication profession and for communicators.

To me, that’s best summed up by the photo you see here of the 2008-2009 IABC Chair, Barbara Gibson, and the 2009-2010 Chair, Mark Schumann, that I snapped during the Leaders’ Reception on Saturday evening.

I don’t think anyone could doubt the positive impact Barb Gibson has had on members and the profession during her year as IABC Chair. Equally, there’s no doubt that Mark Schumann enjoys the goodwill and excitement that marks the start of a new leadership term. I’m pretty excited to see what Mark has in mind for his term.

These two communicators and leaders in our profession epitomize the hopes and aspirations of 16,000 IABC members that we can, individually and collectively, make a difference to the business success of our employers and our clients.

I constantly think that this is a time when it’s simply amazing to be a communicator, no matter in which aspect of business communication you’re engaged. Whether it’s public relations, employee communication, marketing communication, or corporate communication, there has never been a more significant time for demonstrating the genuine value of what communication can do for business.

There are so many challenges and opportunities (threats, too) out there.

So all of that is front of mind when I think about the conference. There’s plenty more, though, including the FIR Listener Dinner on Sunday night; Shel and I doing FIR #455 live from the conference on Monday morning; the Monday morning keynote by Excel Award winner Brian Dunn, COO (soon to be CEO) of BestBuy – simply the most inspiring words I’ve heard from a business leader in years – and, of course, the amazing moments I enjoyed on Sunday evening in receiving the Chairman’s Award 2009 from Barb.

And all the many, many wonderful people I encountered during the whistle-stop visit to San Francisco, old friends and new faces alike. I plan to talk a bit about that and the conference in FIR #456 on Thursday.

I uploaded my photos (a rather meagre collection) to Flickr, all of which are tagged ‘iabc09’ so you can see everyone’s photos with that tag. You can also follow the huge conversation on Twitter with the #iabc09 hashtag.

I’m so glad to be a member of IABC.

Neville Hobson

Social Strategist, Communicator, Writer, and Podcaster with a curiosity for tech and how people use it. Believer in an Internet for everyone. Early adopter (and leaver) and experimenter with social media. Occasional test pilot of shiny new objects. Avid tea drinker.

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