Speakers


Abby Guthkelch, Global Communications Solutions Lead, Workplace by Facebook

As Global Comms Solutions Lead, Abby Guthkelch is the Comms industry expert for the Workplace by Facebook team globally. Her focus is on advising our customers on Comms best practice, trends and thought leadership, as well as working closely with our engineering and product management teams specifically with our Comms customers in mind. Prior to Workplace, Abby has held a number of senior level Comms & Marketing roles both in-house and agency side - most recently as the Global Head of Social Media Engagement at HSBC, and Ketchum's UK Head of Digital. Abby has over 15 years' experience as a multi-industry, multi-channel content strategist and was ranked amongst the Top 25 marketing innovators in EMEA in 2017.

Andrea Mattis, Global Internal Communications Manager, Collinson

Andrea is the Global Internal Communications Manager for Collinson, where she leads on strategic engagement for 2000+ employees. Her 9 year communications career spans across a number of organisations, including Network Rail and the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. In 2018, she was nominated for a WeAreTheCity Award for her service to Marketing and Communications and has a Masters in Political Campaigning and Reporting, from City University London. She is a Confidence Coach and founded The Confidence Club, a platform dedicated to helping women improve their career confidence.

Dr Carla Groom, Head of Behavioural Science, Department for Work and Pensions

Carla created the first DWP-wide Behavioural Science Team in 2015. Bringing together insights from occupational psychology, cognitive science, social research, economics, philosophy and languages, Carla heads the team’s work, bringing into sharp relief the assumptions about human behavior that are implicit within DWP’s policies and processes. She studied psychology at Cambridge University, completed a PhD in social psychology at Northwestern University (Illinois, USA) and worked as a post-doc at the University of Texas at Austin, and has more than a dozen associated publications.

Cyrus Akrami, Head of EMEA Marketing, Workplace by Facebook

Cyrus joined Facebook in 2017 with the mission of turning companies into connected communities. He is responsible for Workplace's relationships with business associations, new market development, and the growth & awareness strategy across the region. Before his current role, Cyrus led Workplace's global client development team. Prior to joining Facebook, Cyrus worked in a variety of B2B roles at Dropbox, including opening the company's London offices in 2015. He started his career in investment banking at Goldman Sachs.

Ellen Hudson, Executive Communications Senior Specialist, SAP

A seasoned integrated communications and content specialist, with over a decade of agency experience within the B2B and consumer technology industry, Ellen has worked with some of the largest technology businesses worldwide, such as Samsung, Motorola, Citrix, SAP and Arm. She has been in house with SAP for just over a year and is responsible for designing and executing a communications programme for SAP’s Regional President for the North European Region, responsible for building personal branding and managing ongoing internal communications to over 14,000 employees across five market units.

Gary Ross, Principal, thoughtLEADERS LLC

Gary Ross is a principal at thoughtLEADERS LLC, a business skills and leadership training firm. He is also a strategic communications consultant, leading change communications efforts supporting international mergers & acquisitions, corporate culture rollouts, benefits changes and more. He has worked in a variety of industries, including healthcare (pharma, medical devices and health systems), technology, manufacturing, consumer goods, hospitality and higher education. Gary has led corporate communications departments at three major corporations: Hyatt Hotels Corporation, CDW and Fortune Brands Home & Security (the parent company of Moen, Master Lock and other consumer brands). Beginning his career as a journalist, Gary was a reporter and substitute anchor for WCBD-TV in Charleston, South Carolina, where he was nominated for an Emmy Award in investigative journalism, traveled overseas with the U.S. military and reported from the eye of Category Four Hurricane Hugo. Gary is a member of the Public Relations Society of America, the International Association of Business Communicators, and the Association of Change Management Professionals. He holds a Bachelor of Science in journalism degree from the Medill School at Northwestern University.

Helen Schick, Head of Organisational Development and Engagement, Alzheimer’s Society

As Head of Organisational Development and Engagement at Alzheimer’s Society, Helen’s focus is on enabling an engaged, motivated and skilled workforce of volunteers and employees to make a real difference to people affected by dementia. Helen has more than 15 years’ experience in engagement across financial and charity sectors. Helen’s approach focuses on creating a sense of belonging and shared ownership between organisations and their people, co-creating long-term plans that deliver high-impact results with the flexibility to respond to the constantly changing needs and environment around us.

Helen Willetts, Director of Internal Communications, BT

Helen joined BT as the Director of Internal Communications in January 2018. Prior to that, Helen had a 15 year career at HSBC in a variety of roles, including starting out by managing call centre teams, leading Retail Banking communications for HSBC and she also headed up the UK communications team during major transformations. In 2015, Helen took over Global Campaigns, Culture and Employee Insight at HSBC, as well as looking after HSBC Group CEO Stuart Gulliver’s employee communications including the launch of HSBC’s strategic actions. Her final position at HSBC was Global Head of Employer Brand and Volunteering.

Jane Fordham, Founder, Jane Fordham Consulting

Jane offers a wide gamut of consulting, training and development services across most aspects of people management including culture, talent acquisition and development, wellbeing and, diversity and inclusion. She has worked with brands including The PRCA (PR industry body), The Civil Aviation Authority, SGN (Scottish Gas Networks), Ticketmaster, Ipsos Mori, Centrica, Westminster City Council, Jack Morton (global events agency) and Arm (UK technology giant).

Jane Tebbey, Head of Internal Communications, National Physical Laboratory

Jane is Head of Internal Communications at the National Physical Laboratory, a government-owned organisation delivering impact to UK industry and society through science and engineering. Jane is a highly experienced communications professional, who has held a variety of internal and external communications roles throughout her career. She has worked in both in-house and consultancy roles, with a focus on engaging people in change. Most recently, she has led the internal communication for a major transformation programme.

Jo Bleasdale, Director of Internal Communications, GVC

An experienced leader in consumer PR and internal communications, with over twenty years’ in both agency and in-house. Jo brings learnings from a wide range of sectors (media, entertainment, telecoms, technology, personal finance and travel). Now, she's leading the global internal communications for GVC, having recently moved from a similar role at BT. A passionate communicator, with a mission for bringing purpose, products and possibilities to life.

Joe Mcmann, Senior Communications Manager, 02

Joe joined O2 in June 2017 as senior manager within the Internal Comms team. He was interim Head of Internal Comms from Oct 2018 until August 2019, when he moved into his current role. Joe joined O2 from British Airways, where he was working in strategic campaigns (Internal Comms). He completed a Masters in Internal Communications in 2017. Joe has been working in Internal Comms since 2014-2018, but previously worked in a Customer Comms and Press Office and trained as a journalist after completing a degree in English Literature.

John Townsend, Head of Internal Communications, Unicef UK

John Townsend heads up Unicef UK’s Internal Communications team, making sure that his colleagues are informed, engaged and inspired about the work of the world’s largest children’s charity. Having worked in internal comms for over a decade, John is passionate about the impact good internal communications can have on an organisation. Some of his key areas of interest include the power of storytelling, the importance of employee voice and the role of internal communications in promoting a culture of happiness and engagement at work.

Laura Jamieson, Head of Internal Communications, Landsec

Over the last three years at Landsec, Laura has driven internal communications higher up the strategic agenda. She has over a decade’s experience working on strategic internal and external communication campaigns for a variety of industries. She has specialised in IC for the past seven years, developing and delivering impactful communications to drive business performance.

Mark Tittle, Global Internal Communications Manager, Just Eat

Mark currently leads the Internal Communications team at Just Eat, delivering a strategy that engages employees by informing, involving and inspiring them across digital and face to face channels - and using insight to drive change at a leadership level. Responsible for all internal comms activities across 13 countries to over 4000 people, he's got a proven track record of delivering results in the UK government and multi-national private sector organisations, including Ofsted, the Department of Health, Carphone Warehouse and Sky.

Matt Slater, Head of Internal Communications, AIG

Matt has over 20 years of experience in Marketing and Communications in the Financial Services sector, with more than half being in an internal communication position. Having established an internal communications function from scratch in two distinct organisations, he's lead on introducing strategic planning, change management, internal social media, and managed intranet design and build.

Max Puller, Employee and Change Communications Director, Sodexo

Max is currently Director of Employee and Change Communications at Sodexo - a multi-award winning managed services company, operating in 72 countries around the world. Max leads the team responsible for reaching, engaging and inspiring 36,000 employees operating across 2,300 client sites in the UK and Ireland. Previous roles include Account Director at healthcare communications agency, Pegasus, and Chief Communications Officer at the Ministry of Defence.

Nathan King, Behavioural Science Advisor, Department for Work and Pensions

Nathan works on investigating and challenging assumptions about human behaviour, with a particular focus on communications and its relationship with policy and strategy both in DWP and across government. Prior to this he was in the Cabinet Office. It was here he first developed his passion for using behavioural science to make communications even more effective, and the power of communications as a tool. He is a co-author of the GCS “Strategic communications: a behavioural approach” document and has a BA in Philosophy, Politics and Economics from the University of Oxford.

Nick Howard, Partner, Brunswick Group

Nick is a Brunswick partner leading the firm’s employee engagement and organisation design offers. He has more than 20 years’ experience advising business leaders of blue chip companies across Europe, North America and UAE. Before joining Brunswick, Nick led Edelman’s organisation design and engagement practice. Before Edelman, Nick was Retail Communications Director for Lloyds Banking Group. There he led the successful communication of Europe’s biggest financial services integration – Lloyds TSB and HBOS. His work at Lloyds won several awards and Nick has also been shortlisted as Melcrum’s Communications Leader of the Year.

Phil Askham, Global Head of Employee Communications, HSBC

Phil Askham leads a team of over 50 people responsible for employee communications across HSBC. Phil has been with HSBC since 2007. Previously, he worked for Telefonica O2 as UK Head of Internal Communications and Involvement. He learned his craft during a three-year stint at Smythe Dorward Lambert, one of the UK's first internal communications consultancies. He started his career as a fast-stream civil servant in the UK Government, including 2 years as Private Secretary to successive Secretaries of State for Education. Phil has an MBA from London Business School.

Rachel Miller, Director, All Things IC

Rachel Miller is the Director of All Things IC and advises Internal Communicators via training, consultancy and her popular blog. Her clients include BBC, LEGO, NHS, Transport for London and British Red Cross. She’s a highly experienced and multiple award-winning practitioner who has trained hundreds of Comms pros via her monthly and bespoke Masterclasses. Communicators say working with her increases their skills and boosts their knowledge and confidence. Rachel is a Chartered PR professional and Fellow of both the Institute of Internal Communication and Chartered Institute of Public Relations.

Sanjoy Mukherjee-Richardson, Head of Internal Communications and Engagement, BBC News

Sanjoy has over 23 years’ experience of leading internal and change communications for major global companies. Amongst these are Fortune 500 companies such as Reckitt Benckiser, HSBC, Coca-Cola European Partners, Philips Electronics and Teva Pharmaceuticals. At present, he’s Head of Internal Communications and Engagement for BBC News. With 9,000 employees spread across 70+ countries, it is the largest division within the BBC and is responsible News and Current Affairs output. It provides news services in 40 languages through TV, radio, and digital platforms for UK and global audiences, reaching 426 million people per week across the world. Sanjoy completed his PhD on organisation culture, and spent 11 years in academia, including three years as a Professor of Organisational Behaviour at Haifa University in Israel, where his research and teaching focused on the impact of national cultures in managing and engaging international workforces.

Satnam Kaur, Head of Internal Communications, Priory Group

After a decade of working in PR and communications, Satnam joined the University of Manchester in an internal communications role. Since then she has established a new internal communications function at Together Financial Services and led them to 33rd place in the Sunday Times Top 100 Companies list. In late 2018 Satnam, joined Priory Group, the UK’s leading independent provider of behavioural care and is committed to engaging and inspiring 23,000 colleagues across 450 sites with great content, two-way communications channels and a fresh approach to recognition, diversity and wellbeing.

Stuart Williamson, Director of Communications, Nationwide Building Society

Stuart is responsible for building understanding and belief in Nationwide’s difference as a building Society among employees, media and external stakeholders. He’s worked for Nationwide for ten years and during that time has helped the Society to grow its reputation internally and externally. Stuart joined Nationwide from communications agency, Grayling, where he spent five years representing a range of major organisations.

Susie Llewellyn-Jones, Head of Strategic Internal Communications, Linklaters LLP

Susie Llewellyn-Jones heads up internal communications at Linklaters, one of the world’s largest law firms with offices in 20 countries. The team forms part of the Strategy function, co-located with the executive team, reflecting the vital role of internal communications in reinforcing culture and values, delivering business objectives and driving organisational change on a global level. Susie has 23 years’ marketing and communications experience in the professional and financial services sectors in the UK and the US. She specialises in executive communications and working one-to-one with senior leaders.

Tom Engel, Director of External Communications, BT

Starting his career as a parliamentary researcher, Tom worked in the South African parliament, where he established a scheme to train young parliamentary staff from groups previously excluded from such roles. Back in the UK, he served as Special Adviser to the Secretary of State for Education and Employment. Tom joined BT from Pearson in January 2018 as Director of External Communications. He has held similar corporate communications leadership positions at the UK Departments for International Development and Work & Pensions, and the Natural History Museum.

Vanessa Unwin, Global Head of Internal Communications, Hitachi

Vanessa has worked as a communications professional in the rail, insurance and publishing sectors for Faber & Faber, Babcock, Network Rail and Aviva. Currently Global Head of Internal Comms at Hitachi Rail, she leads teams across the UK, Europe and Asia Pacific, establishing best practice and two way engagement for 14,000 colleagues, and ensuring team skills and capability to deliver the Global Rail business Strategy. Specialisms include change and integration management, stakeholder engagement and events.


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