By Robert Grupp, Director, National Summit on Strategic Communications
Every year, high-level leaders come together for leadership summits. When executed well, these meetings are worth the time and expense. They can serve as a powerful catalyst to introduce new strategies, develop solutions to problems and fuel collaboration across business sectors.
Contrary to what some leaders assume about the opportunity cost incurred by taking top managers away from their normal duties for several days, when executed well, these meetings are certainly worth the time and expense. You can have genuine and productive conversations with many people at once.
Over the past decade, we have designed and conducted leadership summits for hundreds of executives in scores of companies, the military, government agencies at the federal state and local levels and in nonprofits and NGOs. Remarkably straightforward strategies and practices can ensure that information at leadership summits flows not only down from the top but also up from the group, and across it.
By applying the appropriate techniques to the annual National Summit on Strategic Communications (www.strategicsummit.com), we see to it that participants leave with unambiguous new strategies that they can turn into action.
Each year, our Strategic Summit speakers and panelists are chosen to share the ideas that no one else quite sees, or that groups don’t yet understand well enough to execute. With plenary keynotes and interactive sessions by 30+ pros from the U.S. Coast Guard, Special Operations Command, PayPal, Lenovo, Booz Allen Hamilton, Verizon, Bayer, PwC, Takeda Pharmaceutical Company, we seek to share digital trends and strategies with the most potential to change the game.
For example, these are among sessions featured at the 2018 Strategic Summit.
> ALWAYS READY: DOING THE IMPOSSIBLE EVERYDAY —Coast Guard Commandant, Admiral Paul Zukunft, will share remarkable initiatives, problem-solving and recovery operations to provide new ideas and solutions for decision-makers in the public and private sectors alike.
> HOW TECH IS EATING POLITICS AND ADVOCACY — Backroom deal-making is out. Voter influence is in. But connecting takes a new breed of data-driven, technology-enhanced engagement. This session explains how you can use technology to create greater insights into stakeholders — and a more influential connection with them.
> BUILDING BRANDS AND REPUTATION IN AN AGE OF DISTRUST — This is about strategies to tell your brand story so it matters to customers and illustrates the soul of your organization.
> STORYTELLING FOR MAXIMUM EFFECT IN NONPROFIT COMMUNICATIONS — Competition for donor dollars is escalating and experts reveal how healthcare nonprofits publicize advances in treatment and differentiate their mission for a new generation of donors and participants.
> CAN WE APPLY WHAT WE LEARN FROM ISIS IN TRADITIONAL MARKETING CAMPAIGNS? — Their media is fast, effective with their target audience and highly adaptive. This engaging session will map ISIS online strategic communication and draw lessons that can be used commercially.
> CAUSE MARKETING: COMBINING CLARITY OF PURPOSE AND BRAND EQUITY — The need to leverage all the best about brands and tell an authentic story through marketing is more urgent than ever. This panel will explore the pivot to cause-based messaging and what it means for corporate social responsibility, user experience and marketing teams.
> AND OTHER RELEVANT SESSIONS! You can see the complete Strategic Summit agenda on the Summit website at www.strategicsumit.com
Don’t let worries about groupthink dissuade you from engaging your peers in collaborative innovation. Attend the 2018 Strategic Summit and learn strategies for overcoming obstacles and implementing new ideas to help you and your organization grow.
Robert Grupp is Director of the annual National Summit on Strategic Communication. He is adjunct instructor and director of the online Global Strategic Communication master’s degree program at the University of Florida.