National Conference theme - Accountable Leadership and Social Purpose

Event details

Date: Thursday 29 November 2018
Venue: British Library, 96 Euston Road, London NW1 2DB
Time: 09.30-17.00

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09:30: Conference open - registration and networking

10:00: Welcome - CIPR President Sarah Hall

Morning Speakers

John O'Brien - European Managing Partner, ONE HUNDRED

Purpose - the ‘Why’, the Where and the How

We are living in what is being described as the purposeful age – so what does this mean, where has it come from and what is the purpose of PR in it?

John O’Brien will share insights into the evolution of Purpose, why it is so significant today, who is championing it, the difference with purpose, vision & mission and will raise questions for those currently driving new purpose focused PR activities.

Richard Walker - Managing Director, Iceland Foods Group

Disrupting and collaborating to achieve radical change

In 2018, Richard Walker generated global attention by leading two major initiatives from Iceland Foods, both setting out ambitions that most of his peers in UK food retailing considered impossible to fulfil. In January, he acted to combat global ocean plastic pollution by promising to remove all plastic packaging from Iceland own label foods by 2023. Then, in April, he highlighted the illegal destruction of tropical rainforests by similarly pledging to remove palm oil as an ingredient by the end of the year. These are flagship projects within a wider sustainability plan.

The many intractable problems now facing society can only be solved by people working together - businesses, consumers, campaigners and policy makers. Richard will share his thinking on how, for a leader, this means generating board, colleague and customer support, forging radical new partnerships, and having the ‘sticking power’ to take and enact brave decisions that will deliver important, long term benefits to the environment and society as a whole. 

11:00: Morning break and networking

Morning Breakout sessions

Elizabeth Filippouli - Founder & CEO, Global Thinkers Forum

Values-based Leadership & the PR Industry

Values-based leadership is based upon honesty, respect, trust and dignity, and it concerns and refers to every employee within a company as a valued human being.

Financial and organisational growth can be achieved when leaders, managers and employees operate under a shared-values culture; Values-based leadership turns good companies into great! Values-driven organisations have high levels of employee engagement; they generate higher earnings; they are more profitable, more customer focused, and more productive-they have high retention rates and low absenteeism. They also generate more customer loyalty and more societal goodwill.

Their reputation is reinforced and can make them stand out from the crowd. How can PR professionals communicate this approach to their clients/colleagues and why?

This workshop will include two practical exercises and interactive session. 

Katie Macaulay - Managing Director, AB

When two worlds collide – exploring the convergence of internal and external communications

Internal and external communications were once discrete disciplines with their own teams, processes and audiences. Today, they are forging ever-closer ties. Indeed, some say the line between internal and external has disappeared altogether.

What are the implications for communicators on both sides of the fence? It is possible – or beneficial – to merge both disciplines? Or, are there important differences that must be understood and respected?

Diana Maynard - Senior Research Fellow, University of Sheffield

The Language of Social Media

Social media is ubiquitous, both in personal and business use, but it is not always easy to make sense of what is being discussed. This is for two main reasons: first, because the volume of data is so huge, meaning that extricating the necessary relevant information from this deluge can be tricky; and second, because even for humans, it can be hard to understand what is going on without the relevant context. Diana will discuss how AI tools can enable us to better understand people’s behaviour on social media, and the further impacts this can have in everyday life, with evidence from case studies. In particular, she will focus on the interactions between language, society and behaviour, based on four main areas of interest: investigating the correlation between the public’s environmental behaviour and their use of social media; automatically assessing critical messages during disasters such as earthquakes; investigating hate speech and other interactions with UK politicians on Twitter, and an exploration of social media discussions that can help assess and compare quality of life in different countries.

Pre Lunch Speaker

Josh Hardie - Deputy Director-General, CBI

Speaking up: the value of business in the debates that matter

There is a growing national and political conversation underway about the role of business in society. There is no doubt that our prosperity as a country is linked to the success of business. But businesses can’t make a full contribution through their expertise, investments and ideas - to create a more inclusive economy – when people don’t see and understand the value they create. Deputy Director General of the CBI, Josh Hardie, will discuss how companies can bridge the divide – and why it is so important to do so.

12:30-13:30: Lunch and networking

Afternoon Speakers

Jonny Dymond - Royal Correspondent, BBC

Can Britain lead?

What is Britain now? A heritage theme park? A world leader in education and cutting-edge research? A disgruntled island full of bitter xenophobes? A beacon of democratic virtue in an elite-driven Europe? A slurry pit of foreign money? The image we have of ourselves is part of the story; the images others have of us fill in the gaps, together with a dizzying array of media representations.

Jonny will examine the portrayal of Britain and how it is understood by different groups in different regions around the world. He’ll ask what if any accountability or redress there is for the way that the media report on countries – and how and whether Britain can and should lead in the 21st century.

Ian Macrae - Director of Market Intelligence, Ofcom

Consumer behaviour in a constantly connected world

A virtuous circle of connected devices, high speed fixed and mobile networks, and new services is creating profound changes in the ways in which people communicate with each other and consume media. In this session, Ian will share Ofcom’s research into consumers’ use of – and attitudes towards – digital media. Key take-aways will include potential implications for industry and policy makers on issues such as misinformation or ‘fake news’, and protecting children from online harms.

14:30: Afternoon break and networking

Afternoon breakout sessions

Tom Levitt - Consultant, Sector 4 Focus

On being a Company Citizen

Business doesn’t have to choose between profit and being a force for good: in the 21st century the most powerful civil force in the world must do both. At global, national and community levels the ability to manage risk and think long term point towards a responsible and sustainable future. Tom will give examples of how companies are achieving this balance in today’s world, followed up with a Q&A session where ideas and considerations can be discussed.  

Professor Roger Steare - The Corporate Philosopher

How would you engage a high integrity, high performance organisation?

In this highly interactive session, Professor Roger Steare will share his research and experience in helping employers create a highly engaged, high performance organisation based on social purpose and accountable leadership.

Dr Sam Shah - Director for Digital Development, NHS England

The next 70 years of the NHS: precision public health in an era of social media and sentiment analysis

The NHS is arguably the largest social innovation of the 20th century. As it celebrates its 70th birthday, Sam will explore the developments and innovations that will revolutionise the NHS over the next 70 years. Population health management can be transformed through big data and prediction analytics so people can anticipate how healthy they will be in the future or how will they respond to a particular medicine or operation. Alongside this, the new wave of social marketing and use of influencers has created the need for health leaders with media skills and knowledge. The NHS is looking at different ways of communicating with people to ensure we meet their demands and expectations, and fundamentally improve health outcomes by ensuring easier access to health and care services.

Closing Speaker

Molly Aldridge - Global CEO, M&C Saatchi PR

Defining purpose through accountable leadership for a better team, organisation and world

Clearly articulating an organisation’s purpose and being an accountable leader to deliver upon it, is now more important than ever.  Why a brand or business exists, what the roadmap to success looks like and how every individual can help make a difference – both internally and part of wider social corporate responsibility is critical in the age of global leadership uncertainty (think Brexit and Trump) and the appetite of both millennials and Gen Z to live in a world that wants to give back more, and in a world that celebrates inclusivity.  It also has a significant impact to the happiness of employees and ultimately, I believe, the bottom line.  Being an accountable leader and driving the company’s purpose through these challenging times is a role I am privileged to have.  Ensuring the right people are engaged and empowered at a worldwide level living and breathing our purpose (and vision as it happens) every day is something that remains high on my agenda – and many of our client partners too. 

My goal is to share my experience and relevant learnings to the wider conference – and I’ll be super honest and transparent on my journey to get there and inspiration and guidance I’ve had to do just that.

15:55: Conference summary by Conference Chair – Professor Anne Gregory

16:00: Drinks reception and networking

17:00: Conference close