Sunday, 29 April 2012

simplysummit 26th april '12

On Thursday 26th April I attended the Simply-Summit event 2012. It was held at Prospero House in London where great speakers gave very interesting talks about internal communication. 

I 'simply' loved it since my passion for knowing more and more about the subject could be happily satisfied.

Among the speakers there were:

- Marc Wright, editor of the Gower Handbook of Internal Communication and Chairmain of the simplygroup (I look forward to reading The Gower Handbook of Internal Communication! In fact I won it as a prize! On 27th April I was informed that my name was pulled out of the hat following the previous day's free draw at the Simply Summit. I was so happy when I read that email, I could not receive a better present! It was in my list of next books to read!)

- John Smythe, partner of Engage for Change and author of The CEO: Chief Engagement Officer (book that I do recommend as you might already known from my profile).

Eaun Semple, author of Organizations Don't Tweet, People Do. In Eaun words about social media I found so much of myself and of the way I use it. He was able to make sense of the complex world of social networking and I look forward to reading his book too! 

- Ian Andersen, external communications adviser to the European Commission's interpretation department. He described the use of social media to ensure the training of the next generation of interpreters. On that day I was sitting close to him and I enjoyed his company. We spoke about languages and I shared with him my new challenge of learning Portuguese!

- Christoph Ruedt, Internal Communications Specialist at UBS. He spoke about a recent global information security campaign and technology-related communication initiatives run at UBS.

- Jeppe Glahn, Director of Corporate Communications at Novozymes. He spoke about moving communication into the heart of the business.

- Mark Comerford, professional of digital media who gave a lively presentation about the changing nature of the on-line world and need for sharing, collaborating, building networking of knowledge.

-Steve Crescenzo and Jim Ylisela, experts of employee communications who showed how to deliver effective communications by avoiding some specific mistakes.- Julie Bellham and Keith Porter from Standard Chartered. They shared some of their successes as well as failures when revolutionising the way that the Bank used to communicate with staff. An open and honest presentation of the challenges faced by internal communicators. 

All day I wrote down a lot of notes from the words of the speakers. It is now so interesting to read them, make some thinking and try to understand more and more. 

Below are some of the notes that I took:

- "We engage ourselves in an environment that liberates ourselves"
- "It's about an attitude of mind of empowering people..opening up the decision making process..from an autocratic to a distributed leadership"
- "Do not try to change the world but let's start from taking pieces on which to work"
- "The role of communicator is the one of advisor by challenging the pattern, negotiating with the elite about where others can contribute to add value, understanding the demographics of the workforce, crafting engagement capability into training and development" (John Smythe)


- "The way people have voice is via social media"
-"Individuals use it to leave a trace, to build up a path that matter to them, to write themselves into existence, to give themselves a space to think..there is a sort of psychotherapy in this..people have to find their own reasons to be out there")
-"Let's get technology out of the way and get part of these conversations"
-"The price of pomposity..pomposity does not work on-line..real leaders have followers..conversations can only take place between equals"
- "Managing the mess..The nature of these tools is 'dirty' while management is tidied up..you need help to understand social media and navigate with people sensibly..to do that you have to take an initiative approach and get your hands dirty..step up, do it and get confidence"
- "A new business literature"
- "You have to make decisions and take the information that is useful at that particular time" (Euan Semple)