2011’s EMErald Winners – Ian Andersen

IABC’s annual Gold Quill Awards recognize excellence in business communication across the whole spectrum of the profession at the international level. The EMErald Awards are the regional distinction for Gold Quill entrants from Europe and the Middle East and celebrate the best work from the region. For all IABC members, the Gold Quill Awards offer a framework to structure communications projects and demonstrate the importance of setting measurable objectives, analyzing audiences and choosing appropriate tactics and evaluation methods. This can be for projects of all sizes and budget, and is a chance for all of us to show our strategic value to the organisations we works for.

Q&A with Ian Andersen

Ian Andersen

Ian’s team from the European Commission’s Directorate General launched ‘Interpréter pour l’Europe’; a series of community-building awareness activities in the French-speaking (European) area across a mix of media, with a view to increasing intake of interpreting students in key French universities. Thanks to the campaign, applications to the two top French interpreter schools increased by 140% and 60% respectively in 2010. Find out more about Ian’s entry.

Ian was awarded three EMEralds; an Award of Merit in International Communication, an EMErald Award for Multilingual Communication and an EMErald Award for Social Media. Congratulations, Ian!

I joined the IABC because…

It was the best possible of organisation for my needs: networking with other communicators, in particular in the private sector, and learning from IABC’s collective font of experience and knowledge.

Here’s what I get out of being a member…

Being a member of the IABC is both challenging and reassuring. Challenging, because you get a clear idea of which way the leading edge of best practice is moving, and reassuring because if you work well you know that your standard of excellence is as good as it gets. This is what I tell my boss, but the real key value of membership is the friendship with communicators around the world, starting with your own chapter, and the almost instant brainstorming moment you get every time you connect.

One thing I learned from Eurocomm 2011…

How fast mobile web access is growing and the need for my organization to focus much more clearly on those requirements.

Winning an EMErald meant…

Apart from the personal satisfaction when colleagues you greatly respect recognize your project as a communication action, not just as a solution to a corporate problem, winning an EMErald provided a great opportunity for me to publicize IABC inside the EU Institutions and to share the experience we gained in combining social and traditional media which is relatively new to my colleagues in Brussels.

Why would you recommend entering Gold Quill?

The discipline GQ-entry forces upon you is priceless. You are forced to think through your project in a structured form in line with best practice, and from that basis develop new answers and approaches to each step of your solid plan.

What advice would you give to people who are considering submitting their work?

Read the submission requirements really well, start putting your file together early – even as you are planning your project, and make sure that your objectives and (measured) results are related to each other and to real-world needs.

My biggest communication challenge right now is…

Getting more young people in the UK and Ireland to learn languages and study interpretation so we can solve our succession problem for English language interpreters.

My IABC moment is/was…

When I presented for the first time at Eurocomm and realized how valuable it is to give your own experience and learnings back to your friends and especially to share insights with young colleagues who are just starting out in the profession.

Right now I am reading…

The Grand Strategy of the Roman Empire by Edward Luttwak.

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