EuroComm 2018 speaker line-up

We are pleased to announce the full speaker line-up for EuroComm 2018, which will take place in Copenhagen, Denmark, on 9-10 April. This year’s theme, Communication, Technology and Participation, will see the content focus in on innovative thinking from across the EMENA region, and beyond. We’re particularly pleased to have excellent representation from the Nordic countries.

The content will be a mix of keynote speeches, case study presentations and workshops, with multiple streams offering great choice of content across all communications disciplines. We have carefully selected speakers who represent outstanding communication that makes a real impact and captures the best knowledge and ideas in the profession. Their presentations will offer leads on how to reinvent our communication practices, especially that accelerate participation and makes better use of technology. and showcases pioneering tools and techniques.

Michael Ambjorn
Align Your Org (UK)
Alignment for Performance ––– The definition of strategic and social alignment: how it relates to business performance. And what happens when it is not present. We show why alignment is an essential part of effective professional communications - and how it fits with the Global Standard. Two practical case studies and a participative exploration on how to diagnose the quality of alignment in place. And which tools might be the most appropriate to deal with misalignment.
Itzik Amiel
The Switch (Netherlands)
Disruptive Communication Tools vs. Human: why technology will never create genuine participation and connections (internally and externally)
Ian Andersen
Participatory Leadership Adviser, European Commission (Belgium)
Open Space Technology is a powerful method for engaging an entire conference in conversations that matter to generate tangible, actionable outcomes. Inside the framework of a few, simple rules, participants set their own agenda and can decide to lead or to participate in discussions of any of the topics proposed. The result is that people call sessions they feel passionate about and everyone who participates shares their deep interest in the topic. When you apply this to 100 communication professionals at the cutting edge of their practice, the outcomes can only be dazzling.
Jesper Andersen
Carma (Denmark)
No Participation without Trust – Using data and evaluation to build effective communication ––– We live in a world where it is increasingly difficult to get people truly involved. The past decade has seen a massive breakdown in trust in institutions as well as public disillusion or outrage leading to acts of protest and defiance, such as Brexit and the Trump election. Online echo-chambers divide us into ‘tribes’ of near-religious conviction and make it difficult to nuance our point-of-view. Simultaneously, a dominant ‘outrage mentality’ online causes shitstorms on a near daily basis, blurring our senses to actual problems when they are presented to us. These trends are all poison to participation – and to our ability as professional communicators to inspire, affect change or create involvement. Based on examples and case studies this presentation will illustrate how to succeed in building effective communication using data and evaluation as key components.
Ashish Babu
Tata Consultancy Services (Netherlands)
Digital Empowers ––– Ashish will share how to raise awareness of the power of digital technology to enable people to realise and create new opportunities and help address some of the pressing challenges of our time. Drawing on Tata Consultancy Services’ successful #DigitalEmpowers launched last year, he will explain why it’s essential for brands to find a positive response to societal changes and focus on solutions that are relevant to your company’s purpose.
Silvia Cambie
IBM (UK)
Putting corporate comms at the center of digital transformation: a tale of AI, bots and quantum computers ––– More and more corporations and large companies are embracing digital transformation. Various sectors from banking to industrial to retail are changing their business model around data, which, thanks to the emergence of artificial intelligence and cloud computing, is becoming their biggest asset. Corporate comms is at the center of this transformation. Communicators are being asked to rethink and digitalise their function while contributing to the company’s technological change. In this session, learn about current tech trends like AI, blockchain, quantum computing and cloud and how they are transforming the communication function; hear from the speaker about her experience with training AI systems and getting bots to perform corporate comms tasks; and find out how communicators at leading corporations are going about helping to shape their companies’ digital agenda.
Eoin Cotter
Poppulo (Ireland)
How to leverage technology to elevate the IC function ––– With a continuing recognition of the universal desire for IC to be treated as a strategic advisor within companies, Eoin will introduce some practical stories of how other companies have been able to leverage technology and data to elevate themselves and the IC function. Central to this presentation is the value of leveraging technology. In the absence of data, Internal Communications will not have the power to influence Senior Leaders and Communications strategy. However, by channeling the data and insights available through technology and software, IC has the capability to attain increased levels of influence and power. Included will be some examples and learnings from the world of Marketing where technology has played a key role in driving the rise of the CMO.
Mark Drewell
The Foresight Group (Sweden)
Meaning as an emergent megatrend - reshaping how we shop, work, invest and run our organisations ––– This context-setting session reveals for the first time, the communication consequences of the rise of the Meaningful Economy. This phenomenon is an emerging megatrend that is changing what we buy, where and how we work, invest and run our organisations. In a sweeping analysis sharing behind-the-scenes insights from his work, Mark joins together a series of emergent trends and phenomena into a single picture that contextualises where and how value is being created in the economic system. The session will explore how meaning is the Achilles Heel of todays dominant organisations and how it can be used to empower business communicators at the the personal and organisational levels. This is a story that explores where the world is going - one that will inspire in a time of jobless growth, environmental destruction and social breakdown.
Chuck Gose
SocialChorus / ICology (US)
The Mind Matters: cognitive bias and communication ––– If we debated every possible option when making a decision, we’d never reach a conclusion for even the simplest choices. Attention is an increasingly limited resource. And capturing attention is a struggle for communicators, both internal and external. People are selective about what they pay attention to and our brain are forced to react quickly to the amount of complex information we have to process. These quick responses are guided along paths we’ve created in our brains. Some call them errors. Others might use mental shortcuts. I like to think of them as glitches. But they are all cognitive biases. They are snap judgments are brain uses based on a variety of environment, experiential and biological factors. In this session, I will discuss several of these cognitive biases that communicators need to understand. Because cognitive biases don’t just impact how we receive communication but how we deliver it as well. It’s the perfect crossroad of communication and neuroscience.
Eske Gunge
Actimo (Denmark)
Improving Employee Lifetime Value by utilising mobile technology ––– Technology is giving organisations many new communications tools for easily reaching, engaging and tracking dialogue with, employees. Traditional email, intranets and social platforms, are great but often lack the ability to provide sufficient control over information and insights into knowledge levels in distributed organisation. New mobile technology, and high smartphone penetration, empowers managers to have yet unseen control and impact over the communication flow to employees. Failure to adapt will be bad for business: lost revenues, lost productivity and lost talent. Eske will give examples of how a large number of enterprise customers use mobile communication, knowledge building and performance management to increase their employees lifetime value.
Simon Werner Hansen
Wintra Analytics (Denmark)
Digital Analytics Framework: How analytics can influence digital practices, attitudes and outcomes ––– The 2-year Analytics Journey: Through analytics, our aim is to answer the fundamental question of how well companies are performing compared to others, and how they can improve. Our insights are conducted based on +10 years of experience working with performance measurement of intranets. Our ambition is to leverage your Digital Workplace into becoming a high-performing self-service platform with the benefits of unified communications, operational efficiency and higher employee engagement.
Astrid Haug
Astrid Haug Bureau (Denmark)
The future of communication and tech ––– For the last 10 years social media has become a part of our everyday lives. Now new technologies are taking over - from artificial intelligence and internet of things to chatbots and augmented reality. What does it mean for your company, when everything is connected and communication transcends everything? Digital transformation is a question of how we perceive the world. Do we leave it to others to find the answers, or do we fearlessly embrace change and uncertainty and thereby create rather than just react to the future? By having a customer centric focus, your can use new technologies to strengthen your business, and communicate your way to a successful digital transformation.
Pere Juárez Vives
Professor, University of Barcelona (Spain)
The Importance of Agile Management in an Uncertain World; the INSPIREO experience ––– Pere will talk about gamification and the strong relationship between agility and innovation, and how the concept of adaptability is closely linked. Lego Serious Play is one of the best methodologies and one of the most innovative for facilitating thought, communication and problem solving; oriented to improve the performance of people, teams and organisations.
Dennis Larsen
ReputationInc AS (Norway)
2020 Communications Functions, start designing them now and stay ahead of the game ––– The convergence of new communications, technology and new ways of engaging has altered dramatically how Communications Functions will need to organise themselves in the future. Given the increasingly difficult fight for people’s attention (and an even greater difficulty in securing their active engagement with an organisation or a cause), communicators will need to be smart in prioritising where to invest their efforts. They will need to lean much more on relevant technological solutions both for intelligence gathering and for actively engaging with stakeholders across multiple domains and platforms. After interviewing over 50 communication directors and scouring the latest white papers, research publications and articles about corporate communication and public affairs over autumn, we now have a better understanding of the forces shaping the function of the future and the rapidly changing requirements of the communication profession.
Antoni Lacinai
Lacinai Communication & Performance Development AB (Sweden)
Analog Communication Truths in an ever more digital world ––– What you say. How you look. How you sound. How you listen. These are all skills you need if you want to be a great leader, business person and team member. To master these, you have to invest time, energy and will power. But today this is harder than ever, because it is so much easier to dive into the world of digital tools and digital toys instead. To scan, swipe and like. Antoni will help you enhance you analog communication skills in this ever more digital world by giving you a number of communication truths and lessons that he has gathered over the decades of research he has put in to this. Expect high energy and concrete tips that you can use right away.
Kim Larsen
Danske Bank (Denmark)
How Dreams & Ambitions sparked employee engagement in Danske Bank ––– To better understand and help customers fulfil their dreams and ambitions, Danske Bank encouraged own employees to share and reflect on why dreams and ambitions matter. All 19,000+ employees was invited to share their own dreams and ambitions – first in own teams and later on an internal SoMe campaign site. The organisation-wide, multichannel engagement initiative was called Dreams & Ambitions and included great personal storytelling, a huge variety of emotionally engaging activities, and data-driven internal communication. All people and business objectives were met (and even surpassed) as more than 1,000 dreams were shared by employees.
Rik Mulder
Plek (Netherlands)
Avoiding the social-media pitfalls in internal communications ––– Many organisations are embracing social media for internal communications. But in society at large, we also see the downsides of these tools: people withdraw into social media bubbles, leading to growing political, educational and cultural gaps. This is a real risk within organisations as well. Instead of knowledge sharing, social-media tools can reinforce silos. Communications professionals can play an important role in preventing this from happening. Rik will cite case studies from the Dutch Interior Ministry, KPMG and publisher TMG, as well as give a preview of developments in internal-social-media tooling, such as the use of Artificial Intelligence.
Sheila Parry
The Blue Ballroom (UK)
People vs. the Organisation and why they both have to win ––– How often have you been confronted with the challenge of “putting people at the heart of our organisation” or “bringing our strategy to life”? As communications pros, we are expected to summon our energy, go to our box of tricks, draw out our magic wands and breathe life and soul into another set of strategic plans and value statements. Come on, people, our employees deserve better than that. Employees are the organisation. They design all the stuff, they make it, sell it, deliver it, service it. And, whether you’re talking corporations, big brands, the gig economy or public sector, motivated individuals with purpose and conscience are the ones who create and maintain all the meaningful relationships with your customers, the media, and with each other. Of course organisations need leaders and structures and processes and guidelines. But these shouldn’t be squeezing the life out of the people that work there. The PRIDE Model explores what people are really looking for at work, and how organisations can allow them to find it.
Mike Pounsford
Couravel (UK)
Bushcraft for communicators: prospering in the new world of work ––– As technology transforms opportunities and creates uncertainty, we will help today's communicators increase participation and improve leadership by providing new tools to work with and engage colleagues as we explore new ways to understand, survive and thrive in the changing world of work. Our tools will help leaders understand the landscape employees see. We'll shift from a process focus to a people focus. We'll show different journeys through change, how to gain insights into individual challenges and provide a kitbag of essentials needed to survive in the new environment. We will give communicators experience of these tools in action so they learn in a safe environment and build confidence to use them in the real world.
Martin Risgaard Rasmussen
Microsoft (Denmark)
Communication and Technology – The Yin and Yang of the modern workplace ––– Company cultures continuously evolve and in few areas have these changes been more visible than in the way we communicate and collaborate in organization. Digital transformation has become a key point on the agenda in many companies meaning that new tools are being introduced in the digital workplace at an increasing pace and putting existing approaches and solutions under pressure. What does this mean for the communication professional? How can communicators play an active role in defining the digital landscape? Why should we even care? Hear about how Microsoft works on reversing the trend of focusing on tools and features first to ensure a focus on achieving the successful adoption of new ways of working through the use of productivity scenarios and structured change management. You will see several examples of working with diverse and complex organisations.
Dr Kevin Ruck
PR Academy (UK)
Smiling but not with his eyes: Authentic employee voice for inclusive organisations ––– This presentation addresses an under–researched aspect of responsible leadership and inclusivity; communication capabilities. It argues that dialogue is fundamental to embedding employee voice in organisations in ways that support an inclusive culture. This requires a new understanding of leadership communication capabilities that emphasises listening and responding in authentic ways that are respected and trusted by employees. The research underpinning the presentation incorporates a qualitative research methodology. 27 interviews and nine focus groups were conducted in five organisations in the UK. Three primary themes were established: active listening, authentic responsiveness, and safety to speak out.
Caroline Sapriel
CS&A International (Belgium)
All Hands on Deck! Getting your comms team crisis ready ––– Please join CS&A's dynamic and interactive workshop focused on getting the most out of your communications team in a crisis. How to redeploy your team optimally, how to mobilise additional resources, how to get your content in tip-top shape ready to roll-out in a crisis, how to liaise effectively with multiple internal and external stakeholders, and more - everything a communications team needs to operate as a crisis SWAT Team! This workshop will invite participants to share their own set-up and learn from each other's experience with the guidance of an expert in the field.
Mirjami Sipponen-Damonte
Xpedio (Finland)
Engaging people in virtual meetings ––– This presentation provides an overview to facilitation in general and in particular to facilitation in virtual environment. It provides the audience with practical tips and tools on how to make virtual meetings successful and engaging.
Jasna Suhadolc
Virtua PR (Slovenia)
Why aren’t you using chatbots yet? ––– Chatbots are a native form of communication on mobile phones and brands have started embracing it. According to Gartner chatbots will power 85% of all customer service interactions by the year 2020. Having a possibility of a quick answer even after business hours empower users that now have many different options of communicating with a brand. Of course, some of the chatbots are still pretty primitive and sound and feel like “a conversing with a stupid human”. Brands want to make sure that the fact the user is talking to a bot is clear and a potential transition to a sales (or support) employee is as seamless as possible. In a world where users download on average less than 1 mobile app per month having a chatbot allows brands to meet the users where they already are. A recent HubSpot report showed that 71% of people are willing to use messaging apps to get customer assistance as many want their problem solved fast. Chatbots also have the potential to be important tools for consumer discovery. We’ll look at different chatbots used for service, subscriptions, support and sales.
Lindsay Uittenbogaard
i2i Practical Communications (Netherlands)
Alignment for Performance ––– The definition of strategic and social alignment: how it relates to business performance. And what happens when it is not present. We show why alignment is an essential part of effective professional communications - and how it fits with the Global Standard. Two practical case studies and a participative exploration on how to diagnose the quality of alignment in place. And which tools might be the most appropriate to deal with misalignment.
Stef Verbeeck
Pavlov Branding (Belgium)
Customer experience as the key to successful branding ––– As marketing possibilities and technology evolve, brands tend to forget that their success is based on customer love and loyalty. This session is about reconnecting with target audiences, by understanding why your customers behave the way they do and by examining their rational and emotional motives. By truly focussing on customer centricity, organisations can transform their processes towards a model of human interaction, authentic experiences and brand love and loyalty. We look into models, cases, examples and research - providing you with the necessary insights to make your brand into an experience they won't forget.
Aniisu Verghese
Tesco Bengaluru (India)
Trust, involve and get out of the way ––– Using the power of employee communication to create a culture of involvement and demonstrate positive intent for organizational openness are approaches to drive change and improve effectiveness. When organizations build trust, move decision making to the trenches and tell stories effectively, everyone is able to bring their best selves to work. Through this presentation my goal is to share how and, what can be done to make employee involvement successful.
Louise Wadman
Lloyds (UK)
Changing Culture: A three year journey in three simple steps ––– Louise will share her three-year experience of how she curated a communication strategy to drive one of the largest cultural changes in Lloyds Bank. Impacting 10,000 employees in hundreds of locations, her strategy had to be highly participative, radically different and very authentic. Join Louise for an interactive, behind-the-scenes workshop to understand how she and her team mobilised 1,700 Brand Builders, used collaborative technology to run our first ever Great Debate and what we learned on the way.
Stephen Welch
Eleven Counselling (UK)
Bushcraft for communicators: prospering in the new world of work ––– As technology transforms opportunities and creates uncertainty, we will help today's communicators increase participation and improve leadership by providing new tools to work with and engage colleagues as we explore new ways to understand, survive and thrive in the changing world of work. Our tools will help leaders understand the landscape employees see. We'll shift from a process focus to a people focus. We'll show different journeys through change, how to gain insights into individual challenges and provide a kitbag of essentials needed to survive in the new environment. We will give communicators experience of these tools in action so they learn in a safe environment and build confidence to use them in the real world.
Victor Zalakos
Customer Reach (Australia)
How to actually do change management ––– Do you want to know how to do change management? We’re not talking about the warm and fuzzy things that HR do. We’re talking project change management: implementing new systems, new processes, new legislation, new ways of working. In this presentation, Victor will lead you through the process of understanding a change, what it means for an organisation and how to describe it, analyse it, plan for it and ensure that staff are trained ready to go. You’ll get unique insights into conducting and analysing a change readiness assessment. Providing you with essential feedback to shape your change activities. You should attend this workshop if you’ve been asked to “do change” or want to understand how you can support the change effort in your own organisation. You should also attend if you’re thinking about making a career change from communications into change management.
Rita Zonius
The Enterprise Social Engineer (Australia)
Why we eat broccoli and how to avoid enterprise social indigestion ––– Helping people build a long-term habit of using social technologies in the workplace is a mindset shift that’s no different to helping people build healthy eating habits. Your people need to understand the personal and business benefits of being social before they’ll try it. Today, in many organisations, it’s up to the communications function to take the lead and go beyond tempting people with communications ‘ice-cream’ to supporting them to deliver on business goals through a visible, social way of working – a key capability for people to develop in order to thrive in the digital age. Rita will share her insights and experience to demonstrate what progressive communicators can do to deliver real business value through healthy social habits in their organisations and avoiding the pain of enterprise social indigestion.