Thoughts from today’s #commsconf

Internal Communication: Real Impact, Real Results.

That was the billing of a conference that took place in London today for communicators, called #commsconf.

I Tweeted this morning asking for a comms pro to volunteer to write a guest article here with their thoughts on the day. I am delighted to welcome Jenny Burns @JennyBurns55, Global Head of Brand & Social Media at RSA Insurance as a guest blogger. Over to you Jenny…

I’ve had an interesting day at the #commsconf, it was a packed agenda with lots of food for thought.

ICThe day started with presentations from Virgin Media Business, National Grid, Shop Direct and the supermarket chain, Morrisons. A broad variety of businesses, with wildly different audiences and facing a diverse range of challenges.

Despite that, they all seem to be grappling with the same thing – the move from traditional internal comms to user-generated, free flowing, social based collaboration.

It’s quite apparent that a new generation of employees have higher expectations of technology internally, but actually don’t see it as technology in the traditional sense.

They see social channels as a way of life, survival even.

Gen Y don’t respect hierarchy or big brands. They place trust in the online communities that they build and choose to take part it.  They build online relationships easily. Therefore, it’s clear that the role of internal communication has reached yet another fundamental turning point, but from the questions and comments throughout today, it’s also apparent that there are few people ready for this shift, let alone driving it.

And I kind of get it.

It’s a brave move to turn down the leadership comms volume in favour of allowing more room for employees’ voice. I mean, what if they said something we don’t like?

We have to face facts. We exist for customers and the way they want to connect with brands is being driven by the explosion of social media and mobile access. We can’t afford to be left behind.

Post author: Jenny Burns.

Thank you for sharing your thoughts Jenny, certainly looks like a packed day, especially with 22 speakers on the agenda!

Did you go? What did you make of the event? You can follow the discussions @commsconf and are welcome to comment below or Tweet me @AllthingsIC. (With thanks to the comms pros who Tweeted the pics I’ve used).

Further reading: Storify of Tweets from today.

Want to know what events are on for comms pros to attend? See my comms calendar – do let me know what’s missing.

Below are a selection of Tweets from the day.


  1. Hi Rachel and Jenny – thanks for sharing your experiences of yesterday’s event. My colleague Michael and I also attended, we were exhibitors but we viewed all of the presentations that were taking place throughout the day (to be honest, we didn’t want to miss them!). I made quite a few notes and decided to use them to create a blog post to highlight the key points. It might be helpful for comms pros who missed the event –

  2. Hi Paula, thank you very much for sharing your link, I’ll take a look. Thanks for getting in touch, Rachel

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