CIPR Volunteer Conference, Leeds

19 - 20 May 2022

The first volunteer conference took place at the Queens Hotel in Leeds, with over 70 delegates in attendance.  Rachel Roberts, CIPR President, facilitated the day; read her summary of the day on our Influence blog .    

Presentations are available to view/download  by clicking on the session title. 


Thursday, 19 May 2022

19:00 - 21:00 
‘Reward and Recognition’ CIPR volunteer awards , networking drinks and buffet in the Palm Court Room

Friday, 20 May 2022

08:30 - Registration and arrival refreshments in the Palm Court Room

09:00 - Welcome from the president and overview of the day
Rachel Roberts, Chart.PR, MCIPR, CIPR President

09:10 - CIPR Strategy, workplan and the role of the volunteer
Rachel Roberts & Alastair McCapra, CIPR CEO
CIPR President Rachel Roberts and Alastair McCapra will provide an overview of the current CIPR strategy, the development of the workplan and how volunteer roles across the CIPR feed into and help inform and develop this important piece of work.

09:35 - The volunteer is our champion. Engaging, evolving, and energising the volunteer movement
Jenni Field, Chart.PR, FCIPR, CIPR President 2020 
Jenni Field, Founder and Director at Redefining Communications and 2020 CIPR President, will share her volunteer journey, from member, through group committee management and to CIPR President during 2020 lockdown.  Jenni specialises in leading and developing organisations through change, hear her CIPR experience and learn how she energised and revitalised members along the way, making the most of volunteering time and relationships.

10:05 -Community Management - nurturing and supporting online communities
Asif Choudry, #CommsHero
Asif is the founder of #CommsHero, the award-winning conference that is a community celebrating the heroics comms people perform every day.  Asif will talk on successfully developing and nurturing communities.  

10:30 - Morning break in the Palm Court Room

10:50 - Widening the pool – a panel discussion on diversity and inclusion
Chair: Prof. Anne Gregory, Hon FCIPR, CIPR Board
Panellists will be: Cornelius Alexander, Found.Chart.PR, FCIPR, CIPR Board and CIPR D&I Network, Sarah Brown-Fraser, Activity Alliance and Rebecca Zeitlin, Chart.PR, MCIPR, CIPR Board and STEM.

The CIPR intends to be a resilient and diverse community of practitioners. In order to achieve this the CIPR needs to ensure that it identifies and removes barriers that discourage people from joining, participating and feeling that their contributions are welcome and valued.   As the CIPR works on developing its first strategy towards being inclusive and diverse and also prepares for the National Equality Standard assessment, the panel will discuss and share their views on how the volunteer community can help ensure that this work has the greatest possible impact on the Institute and the wider profession.

See the work of the CIPR Diversity and Inclusion Network and get involved with supporting their work.

11:35 - Introducing values and bringing CIPR values to life
Katie Marlow, Chart.PR, FCIPR, Little Bird Communications & Jackie Le Fevre, Magma Effects
As a group of professional communicators we all understand the power of our beliefs and values in giving us a sense of direction in our work.  In this workshop you'll be having some fun and helping us get closer to being able to clearly state what matters most to us in our work as volunteers with CIPR.
Check out this graphic  created by Jackie's daughter Victoria, during the session.

12:35 - 13.40 Lunch in the Queens Grill

13:45 - Workshop sessions
If you haven’t pre-selected your preferred 13.45 session, we will let you know which session has space

Finding the time: work life balance & volunteering  - Anthony Bullick Chart.PR, MCIPR, CIPR North West
Room: John Charles 2
Balancing the demands of volunteering alongside the day job and home life isn’t always an easy task.  As a Chartered member who commits time for self-development and an established Group chair, running a busy regional CIPR group, hear Anthony’s experiences of managing time, wellbeing and everything else volunteering!

Podcast Workshop - Debbie West, CIPR Podcast Editorial Board
Room: John Charles 3
In this interactive session, Debbie will share some practical hands-on tips for creating a podcast, as well as considering how groups can develop and host content alongside CIR Global. As former Chair and a current member of the Podcast Editorial Board, Debbie knows what works, and more importantly, what doesn’t, and will share her experience on all things podcasts.

Realising your board potential - Fiona Hathorn, Women on Boards
Room: Palm Court
This 'Realising your board potential' discussion/talk is designed for those considering their first board role or seeking to add a new non-executive director (NED) or trustee role to their portfolio.  Participants will learn about what it takes to be a director and strategies for including board work in their careers.  Many of us are convinced that we have the skills and wisdom to contribute to the boardroom, but don't know enough about the role or the board recruitment process to position ourselves to get there.  Others are intrigued by the possibility of having a real impact on society through directorship, but need convincing that their experience is transferable to the boardroom, along with some insights into how to access the roles.  If either of these sounds like you, you will enjoy this mini-workshop.

Even if you are not sure about the career benefits of joining an external non-conflicting community board you will enjoy this event.
Adding a board or committee appointment to your CV is a sure way of drawing attention and validating your capabilities. Individuals that join boards - even a very small organisations - are able to use their experience and technical skills to influence an organisation, whilst at the same time gaining exposure to a wide range of issues from the perspective of a director and building confidence, expertise and networks.

14:40  Workshop sessions
If you haven’t pre-selected your preferred 14.40 session, we will let you know which session has space.

Best practice committee management
- Sarah Williams MCIPR, CIPR Midlands
Room: John Charles 2
As co-chair of the busy CIPR Midlands group which has a fairly unique governance structure, Sarah will share her insights on creative committee management, including how committee leaders can incorporate best practice values and really get the best from volunteer committee members.  What works for one group might not work for another, but we can each learn from our shared experiences.

Accessible events: Sharing experiences  - Jo March MCIPR, CIPR East Anglia and Sara Hawthorn Chart.PR, MCIPR, CIPR Yorkshire & Lincolnshire
Room: John Charles 3
Both Jo and Sara are dedicated CIPR committee members and experienced events planners, with a focus on accessibility. They have joined together to co-host this session in which they will share their considerable knowledge of planning and running events which are accessible for all. We are sure all attendees will leave this session with a host of vital, practical tools to use in your volunteering and professional lives.  

Incubating ideas for 2023 and beyond Rachel Roberts & Steve Shepperson Smith Chart.PR, FCIPR, CIPR Vice President
Room: Palm Court
The 4 pillars of the CIPR Strategy: what are the blocks to progress?  An interactive session reviewing the 4 pillars of the CIPR strategy and discussing potential barriers to achieving each.  

15:25 - Afternoon break in the Palm Court Room

15:50 - Celebrating 75 years of CIPR - Steve Shepperson Smith, CIPR Vice President 
2023 celebrates the contribution of members and the wider industry to society over the last 75 years … and what we / they will continue to contribute over the coming decades.  Hear the draft plans and learn how you can input to this.

16:10 - The Chartered pathway - Ben Verinder, Found.Chart.PR, FCIPR, Lead Chartered Assessor 
71% of the public would trust a chartered practitioner more (PARN, Perceptions of Professionalism Report 2020).  Hear from Ben Verinder on Chartered status, its benefits, and the key role that you, our volunteers, can play in championing getting Chartered.

16:30 - One CIPR - how do we work better together as one? Rachel Roberts and Dan Holden Chart.PR, MCIPR, CIPR Inside
Dan Holden, Chair of CIPR Inside and Rachel Roberts will share their thoughts on some of the things we do well and where we can improve.   Dan will draw on his experience of employee engagement in internal comms and also as a volunteer for a youth charity.

16: 50 - Wrap up and close
Rachel Roberts and Alastair McCapra

If you'd like to learn more about becoming a volunteer, hear from those who are already part of our community.