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January 23/24 2024 Issue

Estimated time to read:
Jan 30, 2024
Total Run Time:
Jan 30, 2024

    Table of Contents


    January 23/24, 2024

    Welcome to this week’s newsletter. The CSCE is an award-winning global communication professional development organisation, trusted by some of the world’s highest profile organisations, governments and individuals. Visit our website to join and learn more about how we can help you meet your professional development goals.

    Importance of meaningful conversations at work

    Everything about our daily interactions at work has changed since the pandemic. Even among workplaces where staff are in the office fulltime, regular employee feedback has declined in many offices.

    “We seem to have gotten out of the rhythm of the workplace,” says Sia Papageorgiou, Managing Director of the CSCE. “During the pandemic, people were on meeting overload and we started to scale back. Unfortunately, in some cases, employee one-to-ones started to disappear altogether, or were replaced with chat messages or emails.”



    According to Gallup, having meaningful conversations with staff is a key part of maintaining high employee engagement. Up to 80 percent of staff who had meaningful feedback reported being highly engaged at work.


    Here are Gallup’s top five ways to improve your dialogue with staff:

    “The top five characteristics of meaningful conversations, in order of importance: 1) Recognition or appreciation for recent work. 2) Collaboration and relationships. 3) Current goals and priorities at work. 4) The length of the conversation: Between 15 and 30 minutes is enough time for a meaningful conversation, but only if it happens frequently. 5) Employee strengths or the things they do well: Managers can have much more meaningful discussions about how each person gets their work done if those conversations are based on what they do best. The takeaway is that feedback is meaningful to employees when their manager focuses on recognition, collaboration, goals and priorities, and strengths.”


    For more information and to download Gallup’s 2024 Employee Engagement Strategies Checklist, visit their website. 


    CSCE Fellow Announcement - Jo Curkpatrick

    We are proud to announce Jo Curkpatrick as a CSCE Fellow. Jo, who recently announced her retirement after many years leading and advocating for our profession in Australia and internationally, is being recognised for her many gifts to our profession. Her career has been characterised by her consistent involvement in leadership roles within her profession and community. She has volunteered and contributed her leadership skills to various organisations, demonstrating her commitment to advancing the field of communication.


    Jo's commitment to ethics and professionalism is evident through her international certification as a Strategic Communication Management Professional (SCMP) and the Accredited Business Communicator (ABC) designation. She is one of the first Australian communication professionals to achieve both designations.


    Jo's leadership extends beyond her immediate sphere, as she actively contributed to our profession by joining the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) and played a significant role in establishing the first Australia Chapter. She was an inaugural board member and held various leadership positions, including Victorian Chapter President, Public Officer, Membership and Marketing Director, and Regional Conference Chair in Melbourne 2006. On an international level, Jo has made substantial contributions, including serving as the Global Gold Quill Chair, evaluating and being part of Gold Quill award panels over many years, and participating in awards judging in Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia, and San Francisco. She also served as the Asia Pacific Awards Coordinator and Excel Award Chair, allowing her to learn, develop professionally, and collaborate with colleagues worldwide.

    “There is no doubt that retirement will not stop Jo from mentoring the many up and coming communication leaders and continually offering her valuable advice. Her advice has almost certainly helped me a number of times over many years” says Adrian Cropley OAM Founding Partner of the CSCE.

    Congratulations and thank you Jo, from your profession.

    A View from the Top with Ulrike Seminati

     In this episode of "A View from the Top", we explore the fantastic career trajectory of Zurich-based Leadership and Communication Coach Ulrike Seminati, a former C-level Communication advisor.

     We discuss Ulrike's career journey, from roles in internal communication in the automotive, broadcasting, and chemical industries to becoming a C-level executive in a pharmaceutical company. Ulrike, who is wonderfully humble yet brave, explains her unique approach of combining training and coaching to help leaders communicate more authentically.

     We also discuss the changing nature of corporate communications, stressing the importance of human-to-human interactions, the value of leaders’ communication authenticity, and the significance of acknowledging individuality in corporate messages.  Ulrike shares some exciting stories from her past, such as planning events in different cultures and taking on some ambitious projects, hence why I call her brave. She is more than happy to share her tips for working at the C-suite.


    Trust and Institutions

    The much-anticipated annual Edelman Trust Barometer was released January 16, with some surprising insights into which sources people trust to tell the truth.

    About two-thirds of people surveyed said they did not trust journalists or government leaders, and believe they “are purposely trying to mislead people by saying things they know are false or gross exaggerations.” Sixty-one (61) percent said the same about business leaders.


    The inability to trust these leaders raises significant concerns about where people get credible information and what they believe. These shocking results present huge challenges for communication professionals. Two out of the three channels that we rely on (business leaders and journalists) are now no longer trusted. 

    So, who do people trust?

    Businesses. When compared with NGOs, government and media, businesses remain the only trusted institution. (It appears there is a distinction between business leaders [not trusted] and businesses [trusted]. It’s complicated!)

    The report presents an opportunity to better understand what influences public trust, and how to consider various factors in our work as communication professionals.

    To learn more, download the 2024 Edelman Trust Barometer report here.

    CSCE Fellow Announcement - Sue Heuman

    Canada-based communication Professional Sue Heuman, FCSCE, IABC Fellow, MC, ABC has been named our newest Fellow of the Centre for Strategic Communication Excellence (CSCE). ‘Sue is a global communication leader, pioneer and advocate for our profession,’ says CSCE founding partner Adrian Cropley OAM.


    With a career spanning over 40 years, Sue believes leaders empower others by creating vision, sharing knowledge, listening for ideas, and motivating others to achieve excellence. She has served as an extraordinary role model to senior professionals and inspired those at the beginning of their communication careers through mentoring and giving back to the profession in the many volunteer roles she has held in Canada and internationally. 

    Sue has served as Chair of the Global Communication Certification Council (GCCC) and was active in establishing the strategic direction of certification. She led the development of the new examination process and positioning of the GCCC as an independent governing body, championing the Global Standard of the Communication Profession.

    Sue has contributed her thought leadership to communication organisations around the world, including being on the CSCE faculty, Spin Sucks, IABC’s Catalyst online magazine, and through several podcasts, on topics such as the importance of strategic communication, the value of the communication professional and how communication professionals can build their influence and careers. In 2018, Sue received the prestigious Master Communicator designation, IABC’s highest honour in Canada, recognising her outstanding career achievements and contributions to the communication profession. In 2021, she was named an IABC Fellow, recognising these achievements globally.

    Upcoming CSCE Events

    Our first Mental Wellbeing Forum for Communication Professionals of 2024 is taking place on January 24 at 10:00 a.m. AEDT / January 23 at 6:00 p.m. EST.

    What to expect:
    💜 Engaging conversations: Connect with like-minded professionals who understand the demands of our profession.
    💜 Expert insights: Gain valuable insights from mental health professionals who specialise in supporting communication experts.
    💜 Strategies for balance: Learn practical strategies to balance the demands of your career with your mental wellbeing.
    💜 Safe space: This is a judgment-free zone where you can share experiences and find solace in the company of peers.

    Our first Communicating AI Forum of 2024 taking place on January 25, at 10:00 a.m. AEDT / January 23 at 6:00 p.m. EST.


    Our AI 'forum', is a place we can chat and share in a safe environment, where having never explored AI or having played and learned a thing or two is equally wonderful.


    Learn • Thrive • Grow

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    About The Author

    Landon Kiltz
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