What does IABC mean to me? Communications / Events / Member post / Membership / Storytelling

It’s a great honour to have been asked to take on the vice presidency of the International Association of Business Communicators NSW chapter, the community and aspirations of the IABC are very dear to me and I hope together our 2019 board can continue to deliver an exceptional membership experience for our communication profession.

This will be my fifth year as a board member for IABC NSW, the first two I was in communication and digital roles helping drive our online presence, in those years I was very proud to set up our membership buddy system where each board member is assigned members to look after, to be their conduit to the board and our strategy.

In my third year I took on the events role and delivered a record breaking year; a 21% increase in overall event attendance and 54% increase in non-members which helped us achieve a 20% increase in our local membership. Then last year I took on the membership role which saw the chapter grow to the largest member base, in I believe, over 5 years.

As a board we take on different roles, we know we can’t succeed individually, we work as a collective and in the best interests of our members, each of us as a volunteer commits an inordinate amount of time to the chapter and through ebb’s and flows we rally behind and support each other to get shit done.


That shared sense of putting the unity into our community has always been a driver for me. I’m therefore grateful to all the current and past board members I’ve worked alongside, many of whom I will be reaching out to for guidance and support, as well as regional and national board members and the IABC staff for their support for our chapter.

I can’t wait to work alongside our 2019 board. As always we would welcome any ideas and suggestions about how to take this chapter to the next level – please comment below or send me a private message.

The ebbs and flows of our work means we are fluid in responsibilities and make decisions as a collective; we are committed to ensuring that we represent our community and will always ensure that our guest speakers positively reflect our diverse community.

I’m proud to say that we have positive gender diversity as well as exceptional diversity of experience and communication backgrounds with an inspiring diversity of thought across the board – come and take a look at who we are here. We have a gender split of 5 female 4 male with a pipeline of amazing board member leaders.

At the start of the year we held our strategy day talking through our roles and responsibilities and the care factor of looking out for one another, we discussed how to continue to add member value, the global standard of communication profession and governance, our positioning and a reflection on our member base, we then set out our vision and explored some event ideas for the year ahead based on member feedback throughout the year.   


Our chapter is on a trajectory of growth and it goes without saying that our membership community is at the very heart of that success – to our members a huge thank you for being part of our community and to the wider communications community, we look forward to seeing you at our future events where you can get a taste of what opportunities await you as a member.  

Our first event for 2019 is now live. Three leading Australian communicators (Qantas, Westpac and Xero) are ready to share their insights and answer your questions on some of the hottest topics affecting our industry. Tickets for ‘taking your communication career to the next level’ are on sale here.

IABC benefits

The benefit of IABC for me, has always been the ability to tap into a community of professionals, to be immersed in a diversity of thought and realise that the issues and problems we each individually tackle are ones that often others can help guide us through, it is a sense of belonging and realising you’re not alone. It is a way to develop a growth mindset, learn about innovative thinking, best practice and to share challenges and celebrate success. A chance to step outside our day to day and keep our eyes on the big picture.

In my last organisation of 12 people I used IABC as a way to tap into that wider network and not feel like I was alone with trying to position communications at a strategic level, now in an organisation of many thousands I use IABC to keep myself relevant and not fall down the echo chamber of just doing things the PwC way.

I started as an IABC member as a new arrival in New Zealand, a former manager supported me to build my network through the community as I was a recent arrival into Wellington, NZ, then I used IABC as the first port of call when I arrived in Sydney and found my current position when I was approached at an IABC event.  

I’m grateful for my current employer, director and manager at PwC who support me in my IABC role and help look for ways that we can support the chapter. I’m very proud to work at PwC as our national thought leadership manager. It is my role to develop, leverage and elevate brand defining thought leadership content for the firm into market, helping our clients build trust in society and solve their important problems. It is my passion to strengthen client and firm relationship, to enable time in market conversations for our partners and teams and to help them deliver an exceptional customer experience.

About me

I grew up in West Sussex, UK, went to university in the beautiful seaside town of Aberystwyth in Wales, spent time in London and Cardiff before chasing down some blue skies and sunshine down under. I spend an inordinate amount of money going to gigs, have a stupid grin on my face any chance that I get to go snorkelling, think TLC were wrong and that you should go chasing waterfalls. The highlight of 2018 was getting married surrounded by our close friends and family, I don’t make resolutions but would like to be able to do a handstand by this time next year and think that if you’ve read this far and aren’t a member of our IABC NSW chapter then 2019 should be your year of membership. Join here.

Members please reach out to me or any of the board members for your ideas and insights for IABC NSW, let us know how do we go from good to great?

We will also reach out to our allocated members for the year ahead to introduce ourselves and our first event is just around the corner with limited ticket remaining so register here.     

Kieran McCann, Vice-President IABC NSW