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Hello everyone,

A few months ago I was taken aback by the results of a global study of workplace engagement. According to Gallup’s 142-country study on the State of the Workplace only 13% of employees worldwide are engaged at work. Admittedly results varied greatly by country and industry and Australia and New Zealand fared better than most with one in four employees actively engaged. Nevertheless a very large number (60%) are not engaged. Obviously numerous factors impact employee engagement and one of those would be communication and in particular leadership communication.

Effective leaders communicate strategically, understand their audience, listen and involve stakeholders and most importantly lead by example. The leaders who stand out from the crowd are those with exemplary communication skills. They are also those who have and rely on trusted strategic advisors.

When we undertook our survey of Australian communicators to find out what the priorities were for 2014 strategic communication and leadership communication topped the list. So it is a definite area of interest and our next event will address this. We are thrilled and delighted to have one of Victoria’s most impressive leaders, the Chief Commissioner Ken Lay from Victoria Police and his trusted advisor Merita Tabain, Director of Media and Corporate Communications, join us to discuss leadership, the role of communications and the relationship between the leader and the trusted advisor. This event will be held at lunchtime on Thursday 16 October and registrations will be open early next week.


Gold Quills

Over the past few months we have shared with you the Gold Quill award winning case studies from Transurban (Business Issues Award) and Telstra (Best of the Best Award). With thanks to Christine Elmer this month we bring you the Best of the Best Gold Quill Award case study from Cabrini Health.

As you may have heard, the timing of the Gold Quills call for entries is being brought forward to mid September. This is being done to better align the timing of the program with those across chapters and regions, as well as to improve the ability of IABC to support the administration and assessment of the entries. The early bird deadline will be mid-November and the final deadline will be around the year end. Evaluation will start in early January, once entries have closed. The awards will be presented at the World Conference.

At the local level IABC Victoria offers support to those who are entering the Gold Quill award program through mentoring, reviews of submissions and case studies. In addition to this, we have found the chances of success have greatly improved with attendance at the Gold Quill roundtable. This support is extended exclusively to IABC members and will be held at lunchtime on Monday the 15th of September. We are fortunate to have this year’s Gold Quill winners, including the Best of the Best and Business Issues Award winners, as well as Blue Ribbon judges sharing their learning and expertise with members who register. There is no charge for members to attend the roundtable (light lunch provided) but the numbers are limited. If you are a member and would like to attend, then please contact Vanessa at If you are not a member but would like to attend then please go to join IABC and let us know.


Call for World Conference 2015 Presentations

Planning is underway for the IABC World Conference in 2015 to be held in San Francisco, 14-17 June. This year’s conference theme, Changing the Landscape: Informing the Future, is about inspiring communication professionals to be part of a new dialogue that redefines business communication. There are a variety of presentation formats and six key topics or tracks. After this year’s World Conference a number of IABC leaders from Australia and New Zealand are determined to have a greater number of local presenters showcasing their leading-edge expertise and learning in San Francisco. We encourage you to think about submitting a presentation for consideration. All the submissions will be peer-reviewed by an international panel team of subject matter experts based on quality, relevance, originality of content, speaker reputation and references. These will also need to align to the six pillars of IABC’s Global Standard – ethics, strategy, analysis, context, engagement and consistency. I am honoured to be on the program advisory committee so I am encouraging you to seriously consider submitting a prospective presentation before the deadline of 30 September.

Before I sign off, we tried a new lunch ‘n learn workshop format last month for our event Amateurs vs Pros (you’ll find the wrap up in this edition) where we had three expert bloggers engage with participants in a more informal and personal way. If you attended the session, I’d like to hear your feedback on what you thought of the format.

That’s all from me till next time.