How to plan your comms diary

It’s currently conference season, with something for communicators of all disciplines and experience to choose from.

I know how hard it is to decide where to invest your time, money and effort, so today I have a way of making that choice easier. I also have a challenge for you.

Save money with All Things IC
Over the past few weeks I’ve been sharing exclusive offers and deals for readers of the All Things IC blog to save you money on upcoming events. I’m going to remind you of those below, and also point you to my brand new Events Calendar.

If you’re a long-time reader of my blog, you’ll know I used to have a comms calendar on my site before I updated it earlier this year. I’ve decided to reinstate it following an increasing number of queries from readers who’ve been trying to find it.

This should help make your choice easier as you can see what is coming up in the next few months and beyond.

Here is the link to bookmark so you can explore what’s on. It will be kept updated with events and conferences and is now a calendar rather than a list on a page.

Do let me know what you think by commenting below or Tweeting me @AllthingsIC, particularly if you have any ideas for events to include. I hope you find it useful.

Learn with All Things IC
The Events Calendar is also another way to browse my monthly All Things IC Masterclasses. These are day-long courses covering topics such as Internal Communication, Strategic Internal Communication, Writing Skills and Change Communication.

CIPR and IoIC members can save 20% using my discount codes: CIPRmember and IOICmember at the checkout. Nonprofit organisations can also save 20% using code NFP20. CIPR and IoIC members earn 10 CPD points/six CPD hours for attending one of my training courses.

Thank you to Helen Deverell @helendeverell for running a successful Writing Skills Masterclass for All Things IC yesterday. Feedback from attendees shows it went well and they found it valuable.

Upcoming All Things IC one-day Masterclasses include:

22 November 2017: Internal Communication
13 December 2017: Strategic Internal Communication (only three places left)
30 January 2018: Change Communication
21 February 2018: Strategic Internal Communication
21 March 2018: Internal Communication.

Events to help you plan your comms diary

Here’s what’s coming up between now and the end of the year. You can find more via my Events Calendar.

Why attend events? For me it’s the same reason I judge industry awards – an opportunity to see how professional communicators are tackling challenges, encouraging behavioural change and working to achieve communication excellence in their organisations.

I love discovering new companies, meeting practitioners I’ve not met before and hearing the reality of life as a comms pro. Conferences give you the opportunity to get inside a case study or idea.

I believe you get out what you put in, so I have a challenge for you.

My challenge for you…

If you attend any of the events I’ve covered in this post, or an alternative conference or course, I encourage you to do these three things:

  1. Write down a question for a speaker or the trainer. Ask it in person if there’s an opportunity, or via technology if they’re using it during the event, or find them in the next break after their slot. Clarify anything you didn’t understand and get the most from their expertise by asking them in person.
  2. Speak to someone you’ve not met before. Take business cards with you (or be prepared to share your contact info if you don’t have cards) and follow-up with them. For example, if you meet someone you enjoyed speaking with, send them a LinkedIn invitation within a week. Tell them what it was about your conversation that interested you, and invite them to connect. Don’t be spammy and don’t be creepy. (I know you know this!).
  3. Guest blog. If you go to an event or course, why not write about what you heard or learnt? If you don’t have your own blog, read my guidelines and approach me to offer to share your thoughts via the All Things IC blog, or use the new publishing platform on LinkedIn.

What if you have zero budget?
Sometimes conferences offer free places in exchange for helping out e.g. being on the registration desk. If you have seen an event you’d like to go to, do approach the organisers to offer your services in exchange for a ticket. It can’t hurt to ask. Do let me know how you get on.

All of the events I’ve highlighted below are in London, UK. But there are various events throughout the UK and beyond for professional communicators. Keep an eye on sites like CIPR, IoIC, PRCA, IABC, Ragan and Gartner for events, awards and conferences around the globe.

Here are some of the events between now and the end of the year:

1 November 2017: CIPR Inside annual IC conference

Unfortunately the early birds have caught the worm on this year’s CIPR Inside internal communications conference tickets, as the early offers have now ended.

However, there’s a range of options to choose from depending on your role, with prices starting from £150 for students. So do take a look to make sure you save by selecting the correct ticket. There are also discounted rates for independent practitioners.

This year’s annual conference from the sector group of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) is on 1 November at Hilton London Wembley. It aims to help you make your internal communications count – and help you align all that you do with the CEO’s agenda.

Further reading: Helen Deverell and Jenni Field, of the CIPR Inside committee shared their views about the conference with me in this recent blog post about the conference on 1 November 2017.

20 November 2017: smilelondon 2017

Simply-communicate’s social media in the large enterprise (SMILE) conference is on Monday 20 November 2017 in London.

Known as smilelondon, it’s packed full of speakers and ideas to help get your future digital workplace into shape.

Readers of the All Things IC blog can save a third off ticket/s using my discount code: ATIC. Simply enter the code at the checkout to save.

Simply’s Marc Wright (pictured) told me: “The UK’s leading conference on social intranets and collaborative platforms is back!
“We feature the best case studies of those organisations who are ahead of the curve – learning from their successes and the bumps they suffered along the way.”
 If you have these questions, smilelondon hopes to provide the answers:
  • Are you riding the crest of the digital wave or lagging behind the workplace curve?
  • What are the mission-critical success factors?
  • Should IC run your digital workplace transformation

21 November 2017: PRWeek’s Strategic IC conference

I’ve partnered with PRWeek again for its Strategic Internal Communication conference on 21 November 2017 in London.

Reader of the All Things IC blog can save 10% off ticket/s. Use the code ATIC at the checkout to save.

I went last year and thoroughly enjoyed it. It was one of the best conferences I’ve ever been to – and I’ve been to lots over the years.

It resonated with me because the speakers were all at a senior level and shared their struggles and successes in a candid way. It wasn’t the usual case study-led conference and was well worth investing a day of my time in.

Further reading: Six things I heard at PRWeek’s Strategic Internal Communications conference 2016.

12 December 2017: Employer Brand Management

This year’s Employer Brand Management conference on 12 December includes experts from GE, NHS Employers and Siemens speaking on some of the most relevant issues of the moment. Topics include Gen Z vs Millennials, narrative and storytelling and Brexit.

The location is etc venues St Pauls, 200 Aldersgate, London, EC1A 4HD.

I’m pleased to offer All Things IC blog readers a 15% discount code so you can save on tickets. I enjoyed last year’s event and would love to see you there.

You need to enter: ALLTHINGS15 at the checkout to save 15% off ticket/s. Book now online.

I hope that’s helpful to enable you to plan your diaries.

If you are an events organiser and would like to offer readers of my blog a discounted rate on tickets, do let me know.

Learn about internal communication with All Things IC 

Thank you for stopping by,


Post author: Rachel Miller

First published on the All Things IC blog 19 October 2017.

Disclosure: As a partner/media sponsor, I have received complimentary tickets.




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