Competence or confidence: Which is more important to IABC?

The industry alliance should focus on raising the confidence in the value of business communication rather than the competence of its members, this author asserts.

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Ideally, these are not incompatible goals, yet IABC’s recently issued “Career Road Map Strategy” focuses completely on member competence while relegating advocacy to the status of an afterthought.

Whether members and practitioners are in need of yet more competency strengthening and validating activities in a crowded, competitive professional development market is not exactly clear. But the interest in IABC’s finally getting its act together in the advocacy department is clear and considerable.

What is ‘advocacy’?

The interest in more effective advocacy was reflected in Ragan Communications’ survey, which, in its being open to everyone, made it more of a referendum on the future of the association than a traditional poll.

The Ragan survey demonstrated a preference for improved advocacy (60 percent of participants identified this as an area needing improvement), while fewer than a majority (44 percent) rated the need for improvement in accreditation, IABC’s signature competency-based program.

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