Local communication professionals were advised to strive toward achieving international accreditation if they wish to become a stronger and more credible voice of leadership within their workplace.
The call was made by Gloria Walker, the Global Chair of Accreditation of the International Association of Business Communications, during a session titled Benchmarking Global Communication Standards: Making your Mark!, held at the Island Inn Hotel on August 31 and hosted by the local chapter of the association.
“Accreditation is very much a personal journey based on your experiences and education to date; however, it takes you closer towards credibility and recognition,” said Wallker during the half day session.
President of the IABC Barbados Chapter, Sharon Marshall, noted that only two communication professionals in Barbados had so far earned the designation Accreditation Business Communicator — Pamala Proverbs of PRMR Inc and Jackie Marshall-Clarke, Corporate Communications Coordinator at the Barbados Light & Power Company Ltd. She added that seven other local communication professionals have since registered for the next accreditation assessment and these candidates would receive direct guidance from Walker during her stay here.
The first step toward accreditation however, is to become a member of the IABC and Marshall and VP of Professional Development, Sophia Cambridge, noted that during the month of September, interested professionals can join the IABC at specially discounted rates.
Walker explained: “Communications as a profession is little understood within the business community so having clear standards and certification programmes help practitioners to stand as equals with colleagues from other fields, such as accounting and human resources.”
While sharing best practices from her recent experience working with the international media and professional communicators during the recently-held London Olympics, Walker also stressed the need to be aware of what she called “21st Century Communications” — an era of social media popularity, opinion-based reporting, citizen journalism and a more fragmented media industry.
She cited trust as being a key attention-grabbing factor for the communicator and urged the professionals present to constantly examine the issues facing their organisation, determine how communication can best address the issues and weigh the effectiveness of their strategies.
The session was supported by PRMR Inc., the Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation, Deloitte and the Island Inn Hotel.