Ethan Spibey, Chair of InterComms writes on the future of InterComms over the next two years.
It’s that time of year when most people are busy organising festive drinks or last minute shopping but the InterComms team is setting out an ambitious programme of work which will lead to the introduction of a pioneering Industry Charter and the evolution of our network into a hub for the communications industry.
InterComms has always been about tangible outcomes. I’ll be honest when I say I was finding some discussions about LGBT+ equality monotonous, the common theme being that the discussion itself was seemingly the objective. InterComms has had a clear role since its launch just over a year and a half ago. In that time, we’ve built a network of 1000 people cross-sector working with organisations large and small to redefine what a network can do and the impact it can have. We engage at all levels of the industry and are the only network that has the unique ability to bring industries together through their communications professionals.
2019 will be a huge year for us as we work towards two key objectives: introducing a pioneering Industry Charter for LGBT+ people at work and the creation of a senior cross-sector industry hub.
Firstly, the Charter has been front and centre since InterComms’ launch. Every discussion we have had, every event we have held has had this in mind and fed into the areas we would like the Charter to cover. Networking events have brought together experts for seminars on critical areas for what it means to be LGBT+ at work. 2019 will see a working group set up from our Committee and across the industry to bring this knowledge together in what will be a charter and accompanying guide for employers on providing a base level of support in the workplace for LGBT+ people. This will be done collaboratively, not reinventing the wheel, but utilising the unique skillset communications professionals have to forward the agenda for ensuring LGBT+ people at work are recognised, respected and valued.
InterComms as a hub has evolved from the senior engagement we have been conducting. We are the only network bringing senior professionals together (for free) with a focus on the value senior LGBT+ executives can add to the LGBT+ discussion. Through these fora, we have brought leading policymakers and industry experts together, set out action plans for advocates and activists and secured corporate support for global equality campaigns. I believe we can do even more to create a hub of the most talented, creative communicators offering free, incisive advice and expertise to those who are making a real difference for LGBT+ people. Not a talking shop, but pulling together a valuable resource for the LGBT+ movement.
I’m truly proud of what InterComms is becoming and what we have done. It underlines what can be achieved by a group of volunteers with a passion and a hunger for change. We, the communicators, will make the case for a truly supported LGBT+ workforce. We will champion, we will advocate and we will represent the immense impact LGBT+ people have on our industry and in our society.