Thundering into 2012: IABC's focus on content, career and business keeps the association on track during a period of transition.Walk into IABC headquarters in San Francisco on almost any business day, and you will be met by, well, quiet. The first sound you hear might be Kayla Miller answering a phone call: "This is IABC. How can I help you?" And you might begin to wonder if this pleasant woman at the front desk is all there is to IABC.
Not so: This is an office that is full of personality. While a large percentage of the staff is quite outgoing, they are also steady, conscientious professionals, dedicated to the success of this organization--excellent traits for the service model inherent in professional associations like IABC.
When we add in the personalities of the international executive board, volunteer leaders from around the globe and, let's face it, the vibrant personalities of so many communication professionals, we understand the diverse, complex yet well-constructed locomotive that moves IABC forward. Together, staff and volunteers create a momentum that is quiet and steady, smooth and efficient--like high-speed rail--focused on caring for your career, your content needs and the business of IABC.
And what a great amount of business there is! The past year has been filled with change and balanced with a thoughtful approach to finding and acting on a new direction for IABC. When we reflect on 2011, two words define the many things that have been accomplished: strategic energy. An energy that has been shared by so many people in clearing the chaff from the wheat to reveal the absolute best direction for IABC's future.
A comment from Shelley Bird, ABC, D.Comm., in last year's annual report captures the tone of 2011: "Our journey is taking us to where we want to be." And indeed it is. This was a year of hard work, with the international executive board and executive staff intently and collaboratively focused on establishing the new strategic plan that has become the platform of the association. With a clear emphasis on the needs of members, we have developed a plan that is simple yet dearly directed to address our strategic pillars of career, content and the business of IABC.
The 2012-2015 strategic plan didn't just begin on 1 January 2012, however. The seeds were planted in late 2010, when the international executive board and staff recognized that much could be accomplished if we were to focus on core competencies that support the careers of professional communicators at every stage of their working lives. A great deal of research, many discussions, and late night and early morning conference calls throughout 2011 steered us toward our future. And through the efforts of so many, the future is arriving.
Let's take a look at the amazing accomplishments of 2011--just the first of many steps in an exciting journey that will keep us learning and moving forward.
More than 100 new content resources were published in IABC Discovery, the online library that gives members access to a wealth of resources. An outstanding collaboration between staff and volunteers is leading to a growing library of the most credible content available to business communicators. New offerings in 2011 focused on the changing role of the communicator, corporate ethics and reputation, online branding, internal and external communication, measurement, change management, and social media. The IABC Research Foundation added in-depth content on employee engagement and the CEO's perspective on the role of communication in meeting organizational objectives.
A critical focus for 2011 was strengthening professional development, leading to some outstanding new opportunities for how we deliver the education that communication professionals need throughout their careers. IABC focused on improving the member application process for the Accredited Business Communicator (ABC) credential. Enhancements to online applications and virtual exams, along with training for volunteers, are allowing candidates to move through the accreditation process more quickly.
We also looked to address the professional development needs of members outside of North America, with workshops in the Philippines, Australia and New Zealand. We began planning for Executive Accreditation Seminars in Australia and Europe as well, with a seminar scheduled for late 2012 in Melbourne.
Another focus was lifelong learning. Two "Career Summits" brought together IABC leadership to create a road map for professional development throughout members' careers. We are currently taking steps to create milestones of achievement for every stage of the career path.
The sustainability of IABC depends on sound business practices that enhance value for both current and prospective members. From financial management to the development of products and services, leadership and staff looked for opportunities to add value to membership in both traditional and creative ways.
The Global Growth Task Force researched optimum business models and began to define the resources needed to reach out to members in remote locations and in areas where the traditional chapter model is not available or is out of step with cultural norms.
Overall, professional membership revenue in 2011 grew to more than US$3 million. IABC achieved a retention rate of 77 percent, with 330 corporate packages representing approximately 25 percent of our professional members.
As 2011 came to an end, we said farewell to IABC President Julie Freeman, ABC, APR, and began taking the necessary steps to bring new leadership and vision to bear on our future. The international executive board began searching for a staff leader to manage our affairs, with the best interests of members being at the forefront in our decisions. We will soon be welcoming Chris Sorek as the new executive director of IABC. Sorek, who begins his tenure with IABC in early July, brings a wealth of experience in executive management, communication and public relations for both for-profit and nonprofit organizations.
The transitions and changes in 2011 were brought about by a desire to improve our core competencies of content, career and business. Throughout, the excitement and strategic energy has stayed true. That energy has kept us moving forward to an exciting future. We're in that future now, and indeed, the train is thundering down the track.
by IABC Chair Adrian Cropley, ABC, and Interim Executive Director John Clemons, ABC, APR, IABC Fellow
International Association of Business Communicators Financial Statements CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF FINANCIAL POSITION AS OF 31 DECEMBER 2011 AND 2010 All amounts in US$ ASSETS 2011 2010 Cash and cash equivalents $ 903,500 904,571 Restricted cash 282,918 282,918 Investments held for operations 2,063,179 1,790,226 Accounts receivable 29,433 77,921 Inventory 78,194 92,882 Prepaid expenses and other assets 190,750 123,836 Furniture, equipment and leasehold 70,662 75,241 improvements--net Total assets $ 3,618,636 3,347,595 LIABILITIES AND NET ASSETS LIABILITIES: Accounts payable $ 316,374 270,330 Due to affiliated chapters and regions 37,892 79,142 Accrued expenses 119,748 122,047 Deferred revenue 1,714,987 1,665,259 Deferred rent 98,381 29,687 Total liabilities $ 2,287,382 2,166,465 NET ASSETS: Unrestricted $ 1,251,360 1,101,236 Temporarily restricted 63,894 63,894 Permanently restricted 16,000 16,000 Total net assets 1,331,254 1,181,130 Total liabilities and net assets $ 3,618,636 3,347,595 2011 2010 General administration $ 803,060 963,955 Executive board 417,862 299,948 Total expenses 5,946,762 5,577,718 INCREASE (DECREASE) IN UNRESTRICTED $ 150,124 461,955 NET ASSETS CHANGES IN TEMPORARILY RESTRICTED NET ASSETS: Net assets released from restrictions 0 0 INCREASE IN NET ASSETS $ 150,124 461,955 NET ASSETS--Beginning of year 1,181,130 719,175 NET ASSETS--End of year $ 1,331,254 1,181,130 CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF ACTIVITIES AND CHANGES IN NET ASSETS FOR THE YEARS ENDED 31 DECEMBER 2011 AND 2010 CHANGES IN UNRESTRICTED NET ASSETS: 2011 2010 Revenue and support: Membership dues and fees $ 3,104,271 2,899,852 Conferences, seminars and awards 2,448,103 2,507,160 Information resources and 306,921 344,268 publications Job Target Advertising 203,638 179,658 Investment income (21,806) 76,121 Contributions 30,467 21,686 Other revenue 25,292 10,928 Net assets released from 0 0 restrictions Total revenue and support $ 6,096,886 6,039,673 Expenses: Program expenses: Conferences, seminars and awards $ 1,832,563 1,483,206 Membership 899,426 968,919 Information resources and 913,329 885,067 publications Public relations 375,575 303,274 Leadership and international 242,596 335,282 development Accreditation 218,106 130,566 Other professional development 244,245 207,501 Total program expenses $ 4,725,840 4,313,815 CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF CASH FLOWS FOR THE YEARS ENDED 31 DECEMBER 2011 AND 2010 CASH FLOWS FROM OPERATING ACTIVITIES: 2011 2010 Increase in net assets $ 150,124 461,955 Adjustments to reconcile increase in net assets to net cash provided by operating activities: Depreciation and amortization 37,675 27,429 Unrealized gain on investment 52,389 (48,396) Changes in assets and liabilities: Accounts receivable 48,488 (39,572) Inventory 14,688 31,982 Prepaid expenses and other assets (66,914) 70,419 Accounts payable 46,044 76,561 Due to affiliated chapters and regions (41,250) 25,481 Accrued expenses (2,299) 8,803 Deferred revenue 49,728 41,440 Deferred rent 68,694 29,687 Net cash provided by operating $ 357,367 685,789 activities CASH FLOWS FROM INVESTING ACTIVITIES: Purchases of equipment (33,096) (29,552) Purchases of investments (325,342) (168,770) Proceeds from sale of investments 0 200,000 Net cash used in investing activities $ (358,438) 1,678 NET INCREASE (DECREASE) IN CASH AND CASH (1,071) 687,467 EQUIVALENTS CASH AND CASH EQUIVALENTS--Beginning of 904,571 217,104 year CASH AND CASH EQUIVALENTS--end of year $ 903,500 904,571 This summary of financial information has been extracted from IABC consolidated audited financial statements, on which an independent public accounting firm has expressed an unqualified opinion. To obtain copies of the complete audited financial statements, contact IABC world headquarters: mlennon(r)iabc.com.