Reflections on CASE Europe Annual Conference


06 Sep 2017

Reflections on CASE Europe Annual Conference

Phew! It’s over for another year! The CASE European Annual Conference (#CEAC17) came and went like a typical Christmas holiday – you wait ages for it, it’s full of familiar faces and it ends with reflections on how to improve what you do in the year ahead. If you weren’t able to make it, here’s our highlights:

We’d never heard of Conor O’Neill before (sorry), but wow! He is a Lecturer in Leadership Communications at IESE Business School in Barcelona and blew his audience away with his inspirational and personal talk. We loved his point about lifelong learning; that we can’t finish our education at age 21 and expect to be employed at 65 with the same skills. So we need to keep learning throughout our life and universities should be playing a significant role in enabling this to happen. Conor also talked about the 4 leadership attributes that are most likely to make us go the extra mile for our managers; competence, forward looking and inspirational. But rated above each of these was honesty. To succeed, we need to retain our humanity.

Jim Tudor from Future Index shared his usual run-through of examples of digital excellence from around the sector. We love the fact that Jim doesn’t limit his sights to the UK alone, but also looks at best (and innovative) practice from institutions around the world. Our favourites included Georgetown University’s timely hijacking of a Star Wars film release to share content about a range of topics including leadership (watch video here) and the University of Southern Queensland, who use memes to engage their students with topics such as adjusting to student life, mental health support and study tips. 

We were delighted to be given a copy of a new book written by Susy Baker and Anna Myers and published by CASE, which was officially launched at the conference.  It’s a topic that tackles one of the most difficult and interminable questions of marketing in our sector – the Challenge of Being Distinctive. We’re looking forward to getting stuck into that. If you’d like a copy, contact CASE here.

Our final highlight was our very own session, where we were delighted that Ken Punter, Deputy Director of Marketing at the University of Warwick joined us to share the results of a research project that we completed for the University earlier this year. We explored the ways in which the University could be relevant to its alumni population, largely by better understanding their needs and attitudes. We are keen to test whether the Warwick findings are applicable across the whole sector, so if you are interested in doing something similar, please do get in touch.

And as for next year?  Roll on #CEAC18 in Edinburgh. We’ll be ready!

Rachel Killian

Lead Client Partner