Never stop learning: the key to future careers in business communications

I’ve heard that the communications profession is changing fast (or is it)? No, someone else told me that the fundamentals are still important (or are they)? Who knows? This is exactly why we need to keep the dialogue open about our profession – and it was the subject of a talk I gave on behalf of IABC Hong Kong chapter to The Hong Kong Polytechnic University School of Professional Education and Executive Development (SPEED) on March 2.

My key message for the talk, “Future Careers in Business Communications”, was that we should never stop learning. It was clear that the 35 students who signed up for the talk have committed to continuing their education not only through professional development courses but also through enrichment activities such as external speakers arranged by the University.

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I have observed over the past several years that several societal and technical changes are influencing our profession. These include the increase in non-governmental organizations and (social) activism; the search for “authenticity”; demands for greater transparency; ever-shorter attention spans; the speed of crisis propagation; fluctuating levels of trust in different institutions; and increasing political influence on commercial communication. Looking at Hong Kong alone, the changes in our population’s media consumption habits show clearly why communicators need new skills. With 4.65 million mobile internet users, 96% of whom browse daily, knowledge of multiple platforms beyond “media” is a must.


Venue: KPMG Hong Kong
Address: 23rd Floor, Hysan Place, 500 Hennessy Road
Causeway Bay, Hong Kong

Date: February 29, 2016
Time: 2:00pm – 3:30pm

On the grid: Communications in an entirely online world

Christopher Daguimol, Regional PR Director, ZALORA

The immense opportunities of the online world continue to draw attention. Our first speaker event of the year - “On the grid” - attracted a full house of business communicators who came to hear how ZALORA operates in an entirely online world.

Launched in March 2012, ZALORA aims to redefine high-street fashion in its target market of 570 million people in South East Asia and Australia. To date, more than 3 million unique customers have purchased on ZALORA. 


Venue: Lawry’s
Address: Shop 201B, 2/F Hutchison House, 10 Harcourt Road. Central, Hong Kong
Date: November 17, 2015
Time: noon – 2pm

Getting communicators a seat at the big data table

Ewan Ross, Area Director, Greater China, Meltwater

Is the communications department going to be left behind when it comes to making use of big data? In order to take advantage of the wealth of data now available, communicators need to address methodology and technology along with their traditional skills of storytelling and stakeholder engagement. Ewan Ross, with more than 7 years’ experience across the UK, Greater China, India and Africa in using data analysis to support corporate communications, will take members and guests through the process of understanding and using big data to interact with and support senior leadership.

An IABC-HK Event
Tuesday 21st April 2015
12:15pm - 2pm
Lawry's Hong Kong, Shop 201B, 2/F Hutchison House
10 Harcourt Road, Central, Hong Kong 

While social media are clearly having an enormous impact on the way crises arise, it is equally clear that mainstream media are still the most important driver for company crises. But how has the role of the mainstream media during a crisis changed, compared to previous decades - and is it different in Asia Pacific from the rest of the world? How do mainstream media and social media interact today - and how can companies and organizations make best use of their limited communications resources during a crisis?

An IABC-HK Event
Monday 2nd March 2015
12.30pm to 2pm
Lawry's, Shop 201B, 2/F Hutchison House
10 Harcourt Road, Central, Hong Kong 

Luxola is Asia-Pacific’s leading online beauty retailer, with operations in 11 countries. Based at Luxola's headquarters in Singapore, Simon oversees regional SEO and Content Marketing with a strong emphasis on data-driven strategies. He will present a case study detailing the development, successes, and lessons learned from Luxola's popular online magazine, LX Edit, and how these lessons can be applied in both online and offline contexts.


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