CONNECT: A Networking Series by and for IABC EMENA Members

Connect and be inspired! Join fellow IABC EMENA members for bi-monthly networking and best-practice sessions starting June 8. 

Following the success of our IABC Converge event co-hosted with IABC Africa and APAC in April, we are continuing the conversation for you, our IABC EMENA members, through our networking series, CONNECT!   

  • What: A series of online networking events for IABC EMENA members to connect on a specific topic of interest. Each event will begin with a guest presentation by an inspirational speaker, followed by discussion and Q&A.
  • Why: A great opportunity to meet other communications professionals, share best practice, and discuss hot topics.
  • Who: EMENA Members and EMENA Chapter members.
  • Where: Zoom – link to be sent the day before the event to all members.
  • When: 45min sessions on the first Tuesday and last Thursday of every month.
    • Please see full schedule below for details:
Tuesday 8 June 12:30 CET (link event page)Alex Malouf:  Sustainability and Comms – It’s not just about plastics
Thursday 24 June 12:30 CETStephen Welch: What kind of communications advisor are you?
Tuesday 27 July 12:30 CETDr. Kendi Guantai: A sense of belonging
Thursday 26 August 12:30 CETMike Pounsford: What Psychological Safety means and how communicators can create safe spaces
Tuesday 14 September 12:30 CETCaroline Sapriel: Are you crisis ready?
Thursday 21 October 11:00 CET Mike Klein: Communication Leadership

meet our speakers

Alex Malouf is a marketing communications executive who has spent the last 17 years in the Middle East. Alex has lived across the region, in Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Lebanon, Jordan, Syria and the United Arab Emirates. He is the Corporate Communications Director for the Middle East and Africa at Schneider Electric.

A journalist by training and with a cultural mix that is both European and Arabic, Alex’s expertise spans communications and media, public relations and marketing for both multinationals in the energy, technology and FMCG space as well as several Gulf-based government institutions. Alex’s experience includes corporate communications, media relations and outreach, content development, crisis/ reputation management, and digital/social media. 

When he’s not putting pen to paper, Alex can be found advocating for the region’s media and public relations industry. Alex is passionate about promoting sustainability in the communications sector by highlighting the industry’s potential to GCC nationals. He works with not-for-profit organizations such as the IABC to shape and support training and awareness initiatives for those wishing to pursue a career in public relations.

Stephen is a communication, HR, and change professional with strong skills in consulting, leadership development, and research. He has experience in marketing, mentoring and developing business simulations, such as the Corporate Snakes and Career Ladders project. This project helps people go from technical experts to strategic advisers.

Until recently, he was working three days a week in the HR Dept of Dialog Semiconductor, to ensure the continued success of this fast-growing business. His focus was on internal communications, our employee survey, and ad hoc topics such as business partnering and leadership coaching.

In his previous full-time role, he was a global partner of Hay Group, a leading HR consultancy. He worked there from 2002-2013, helping clients improve their HR, and ensuring a strong connection between HR and business. He led the global Communication Media and Technology Consulting sector, working with global clients in this challenging, fast-paced and fun industry. This accounted for about 11% of Hay Group’s global turnover of half a billion dollars.

Dr Kendi Guantai is a Communications and Marketing expert at the Leeds University Business School (LUBS), where she manages and teaches post-graduate courses in Corporate Communications, Public Relations and Reputation Management. She has won various awards during her career at the university, including being voted ‘Most Inspiring Tutor’ in 2018, winning the Dean’s Award for Teaching Excellence in 2019 as well as receiving a faculty partnership award for Equality and Inclusion in 2021.

Being a firm believer in the rich mutual benefits of collaboration between academia and industry, Dr. Guantai remains active in the Communications and Public Relations industry and is the current Chair of the International Association for Business Communicators (IABC) – EMENA region. She also sits on the advisory board of Archetypical, the company behind the simulation game ‘Corporate Snakes and Career Ladders’.

Dr. Guantai combines her professional interest in Corporate and Public Sector Communications, with research interests in Authentic Self and Sense of Belonging in education, business, and the wider community. In this regard, she is the Vice-Chair of the Chartered Association for Business School’s Race Equality Action Group and a founding trustee of the Leeds African Communities Trust. In her former role as President of the trust, Dr. Guantai was recognised as a ‘Local Hero’ by the Leeds City Council in 2020, for ‘outstanding and tireless services within the local community during the Covid-19 pandemic’.

Mike is an organisation development specialist in employee communication and engagement. His work involves helping to develop engagement strategies, strengthening the links between what people do and business strategy, and developing the capabilities of leaders and managers to create engaging environments. He is particularly interested in how organisations listen effectively and run surveys, webinars, and workshops for individuals and organisations across the globe.

He founded Couravel in 2001 and works with associates so he can provide clients with a lot of experience but without the overheads that go with more traditional consulting models. He has an MBA from London Business School and is accredited under the NTL Organisation Development programme. He recently completed a term as UK President of the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC).

Caroline is a seasoned international crisis resilience professional with over 25 years of experience in risk, crisis and business continuity management and has extensive expertise in crisis communication.

Caroline is an accomplished coach, trainer and facilitator in her field and is acknowledged industry-wide for her ability to provide customised, results-driven counsel at the highest level of organisations across industry sectors globally.

Caroline regularly speaks at international conferences and seminars on risk and crisis management. She lectures on crisis management at the University of Antwerp’s Safety Science Faculty Graduate programme and has lectured at the graduate school of public administration of Leiden University.

Specialities: Crisis Preparedness Assessments and Audits, Risk, Crisis and business continuity management process development, integration and implementation, Design and delivery of competency development programs at all levels of clients organisations, Design and management of crisis desktop and simulation exercises, Monitoring and benchmarking.

Mike Klein is Principal of Changing The Terms, a consultancy focused on internal, change and social communication. Mike has worked with organizations in the US and Europe for more than 20 years on pressing strategic communication challenges, and is a prolific writer and commentator on communication strategy topics. Mike is also the Founder of #WeLeadComms, an initiative to drive open recognition and open conferences in the communication profession. He holds an MBA from London Business School, is the former Chair of IABC EMENA, and authored “From Lincoln to Linked In, the 55-Minute Guide to Social Communication. He is a former US political consultant.

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