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22 October 2021

IoIC Festival 2021 was inspiring

It was great to be back! The Institute of Internal Communication’s (IoIC) first national comms festival brought together internal communication professionals from across the world. All keen to learn, share and just have a good face-to-face catch up with peers – many for the first time in two years!

Suzanne Peck, IoIC President and Sequel Group Managing Director speaking on stage at the IoIC Festival 2021


Our own Suzanne Peck, IoIC President, and Jennifer Sproul, IoIC Chief Executive, welcomed more than 120 guests to the festival and facilitated the sessions and panel discussions. Jennifer said that during the huge changes in our worlds recently, effective internal communication has helped people feel informed, connected and purposeful. “It creates a sense of belonging and helps us to make sense of what is happening around us and identify how our contribution matters.”

The two-day festival, held at the Goosedale events venue outside Nottingham on 19 and 20 October, was lively and enjoyable. In keeping with the festival vibe, you could pick and choose from a variety of top-class acts. There were two to three sessions running at any time in themed zones from ‘Inspiration’ and ‘Connect’ to ‘Problem Solving’ and ‘Careers’.

Claudi Schneider, Sequel’s Senior Producer and Client Services Manager, and IoIC Board Member, said she felt invigorated and inspired after listening to a great mix of speakers sharing their knowledge and experience on the key topics of the moment.

“There was so much discussed. Culture, leadership, inclusion, diversity, purpose, values, employee experience, storytelling and of course debates about hybrid working” she says. “Case studies from the likes of the Home Office, Sellafield and No7 Beauty Company showed us practical examples of how internal communication can get us through challenging times.”

IoIC Festival 2021 panel of discuss with Rebecca Leonard of Sequel Group


Becky Leonard, Sequel’s Insight and Content Manager and IoIC FutureNet committee member, agrees the festival was crammed full of valuable tips and insights. “I was part of the #IChoseIC panel, where we looked back on what we’d learned at the festival and tried to start understanding what it means for the profession in the future.

“Perhaps the most powerful message for me came from David Price OBE, who kicked off day two with his keynote on the power of people. With more social movements in the last 10 years than the last century, and people collaborating at distance to bring campaigns around climate change and racism to life, smart organisations will cultivate movements, not mandates.

“And internal communication is in a stronger position than ever to help our people harness that power and shape organisations for the better.”

If you missed the event, check out the IoIC Festival live blog here.

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