The theme for this year’s Melcrum Summit is ‘The Art and Science of Performance’ – a fitting theme, in a city where art, science and performance is celebrated and showcased.

The first day of the Summit was a typically grey and wet day in London, but inside the Millennium Gloucester Hotel, delegates quickly warmed up with hot topics and discussions focusing on: data and democracy, data visualization, measurement that builds credibility and accountability in the IC role, moving the workforce from understanding to action and guerilla style communication that starts conversations.

Will McInnes, author of ‘Culture Shock’ shared interesting insights on data and democracy, and how this will influence dashboards of the future. Key takeouts from this session: tangible data displayed visually in real-time is the future – and WHAT we report on is changing. Happiness, employee wellbeing and real-time customer feedback are just a few of the metrics that matter now, and in the future. Have a look at his presentation here.

As always, effective measurement is an ongoing priority for communicators, yet measuring impact continues to be a problem. Melcrum shared their research on how high-performing IC functions are using measurement to maximize their impact, and ROI to drive results and prove their ability to do so to senior stakeholders. Key takeouts from this session: communicators need to ensure that reporting is aligned to the business strategy, and KPIs are the critical link between tactical metrics and high level objectives.

Kim Beddard-Fontaine from Schneider Electric continued the focus on measurement, sharing how they have demonstrated value to the organisation. One of the favorite quotes of the day came out of this session, where Kim said that IC needs to “stop spraying and praying”. She demonstrated how good data, gives communicators the power to say “No” to communication overload. As a result, no communication channel or campaign can be launched if it can’t be measured.

Following a tasty lunch and lots of networking among delegates, Jason Browning from Novartis, explained how IC has moved the workforce from understanding to action. Interestingly, they use (among other metrics) external reputation metrics to influence IC. Jason also shared a compelling video which was part of an interesting engagement programme which showcased the bigger role employees play in making a difference in the world by being part of this organisation.

Finally, Stacy MacNeil from HP shared how they have rebuilt communication at HP. Using visually disruptive Guerilla-style communication, consumer style content and employee ambassadors as reporters, they have started conversations and improved engagement through challenging times. Key takeouts and learnings: be comfortable being uncomfortable, C-level buy-in is essential, trust your gut and your instinct, if you build it they won’t necessarily come – you have to market and sell it, and it may not be perfect but it will be great!

Throughout the day, group sessions, facilitated by Involve, made for interesting discussions which were captured on iPads, to create visual dashboards.

Once again, Melcrum has provided a platform for rich content and the latest in internal communication trends and insights. Watch this space for more on the Summit.