The European Training Foundation (ETF) is a European Union-funded agency that supports the development of education and training systems in 30 non-EU “partner” nations. These include countries that border or are close to EU member states, from the Balkans and the former Soviet republics of Central Asia to the Middle East and North Africa. The ETF’s core mission is to help these EU “neighbors” develop the skills of their populations to promote political stability, economic development and human rights.
The ETF has an excellent reputation for knowledge and expertise in improving the quality of vocational education and training systems, even in countries facing very challenging political and economic circumstances.
A staff survey in 2012 indicated a widespread view among ETF staff that they could achieve better outcomes by increasing their capability and confidence in a range of communication skills. The survey, conducted by respected consultancy ORC International, tested levels of employee engagement and satisfaction against previous survey results and external benchmarks.
A winning campaign
This campaign won an IABC Gold Quill Award of Excellence for Special Events, Internal. For more than 40 years, IABC’s Gold Quill Awards program has evaluated the work of communication professionals around the globe, recognizing the best of the best in the profession.
Senior management asked the communication and HR teams to respond to this desire for better communication skills. In response, the teams put together a training program called “Communication Week,” which ran from 12 to 20 September 2013. The skills covered in this week-long training included writing, visual communication, email and intranet management, and organizational storytelling.
Given the need for a solution that would deliver the necessary skills, accommodate diaries and attract colleagues from a range of functions—including many who would not consider themselves “communicators”—the communication and HR teams devised a week-long festival of skills development that was designed to be:
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