IPRS Accredited Member’s Dinner Dialogue 2022

The IPRS Accredited Members held our first in-person event in two years, on 8 June 2022 at 7pm, hosted at the IBM Studios. We were delighted to meet IBM veteran, Jen Knecht, Vice President, Communications, IBM Global Markets who shared her insights on our topic for discussion - “Is Cultural Diversity An Asset To Effective Communications?” We thank our Council Member Selvi R, who is also the IPRS Accreditation Programme Lead, for chairing the event.

The evening was attended by 18 IPRS Accredited, Corporate and Full members and invited guests. We took on the complexities of cultural diversity in effective communications. While the subject was a little heavy for a dinner dialogue the sharing was forthcoming because it was a matter close to our hearts and very much so in Asia. Members shared their experiences and there were recurring themes and concerns integral to the understanding and embracing of diversity.

Here is a summary of key observations:

  • There is a need to be sensitive in various environments when working with people from different cultures, countries, gender, age and time zones; to understand what is different or preferred and learn to adapt to these diversities to find the best ways to work together.
  • There is constant media exposure to different situations on many fronts. We are inadvertently sensitised and triggered to respond. It has been challenging for communication practitioners to work under the perpetual media spotlight particularly if they are personally affected by some of  the issues at hand.
  • Diversity was given a boost during the pandemic. We saw and interacted with colleagues from different cities in online meetings without the hurdles of budgets and travel commitments. This has helped to democratise and facilitate communications across borders and boundaries.

Diversity inspires curiosity and collaboration, and often leads to better communications. Diversity may well be the spark that we need to connect us together.

The IPRS Secretariat