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Next at IABC Fort Worth ...
Are Your Employees Picking Up What You’re Puttin’ Down?

Business leaders often call skilled, well-trained employees a company’s chief asset. But for this to be true, these employees must also be informed and engaged. That responsibility primarily falls to internal communicators who deliver the information employees need to get the job done.

How do communicators at top organizations in North Texas accomplish this? IABC Fort Worth this month will hear from a panel of communications professionals from Texas Health Resources and the North Texas Tollway Authority — outfits known for their successful internal programs. Expect tips on streamlining processes, retaining talent, developing fresh ideas and breaking through the noise to be heard.

Time & date: 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 26
Place: Joe T. Garcia’s, 2201 N. Commerce St., Fort Worth
Cost: members $25, nonmembers $30, students $20; online add $1, walk-ins without a reservation add $5
RSVP or RSVP and pay online by noon Feb. 22


Forging Social Media Success
Twitter, Facebook, blogs, YouTube, Instagram — billions of hours each year go into connecting with friends, families and favorite products. Weber Shandwick account supervisors Ashley Lengen and Alyssa Gardina will overview the social network landscape, and that’s just for starters as the PRSA luncheon expands to a half-day workshop this month. Among the highlights:
RadioShack case study. RadioShack rose above the clutter on Cyber Monday, energizing customers with “24 deals in 24 hours.” RS social media director Cosmin Ghiurau will reveal how the concept was created, implemented and measured and provide keys to success for future initiatives.
Breakout sessions, two rotations, on goal setting and metrics, content development and audience building/engagement.
Catholic Charities Fort Worth case study. With the right footing, any organization can leverage its relationships online. CCFW publicists Kate Blackburn and Katelin Cortney will discuss what it was like to attempt social media with no real plan and today be adding 200-plus followers each quarter to Twitter. They will share firsthand “what works, what didn't and what we're up to now.”

Build and engage your audience. If a tree falls in the forest and no one hears it, does it make a sound? What about your blog and social media postings — are they being heard? Idea Grove founder Scott Baradell will discuss practical ways to build and keep an online audience of subscribers, customers, donors and volunteers.
Lunch. Any questions still? The presenters will have answers.

Time & date: Registration begins 8 a.m., workshop 8:30, luncheon program 11:30 Wednesday, Feb. 13
Place: Colonial Country Club, 3735 Country Club Circle, Fort Worth
Cost: workshop and lunch $75; workshop only $65; lunch only, chapter members $25, national members $30, nonmembers $35, students $20; walk-ups add $5


Next at Fort Worth SPJ ...
A Busy Month

Opportunity No. 1  The Mass Media Communication Career Conference, Saturday, Feb. 9, for students: Spreading knowledge with a mighty trowel.

Opportunity No. 2  A look at life inside the FBI with new Dallas director Diego Rodriguez. An FBI agent for 22 years and before that a New York school teacher, Rodriguez has extensive experience in organized crime drug enforcement and worked with the police in Puerto Rico targeting corrupt Caribbean and South American organizations. He was named Dallas director in June.

Time & date: mingle 6:30 p.m., eat 7, then the program Wednesday,
Feb. 27
Place: Joe T. Garcia’s Mexican Restaurant, 2201 N. Commerce St.,
Fort Worth
Cost: $17 members of any professional communicators organization, $25 nonmembers, $10 students; cash or check, credit card add $1; free if you join SPJ right then and there
Menu: Joe T.’s renowned family-style enchilada dinner; cash bar



David Haynes has written four novels, numerous short stories and creative nonfiction, and he heads the creative writing program at SMU. All of which gives him the street cred, you’d think, to discuss “The NEW Landscape for Publishing and Marketing Your Work.” He’ll do just that at the Writers’ Guild of Texas meeting at 7 p.m. Monday, Feb. 18, at the Richardson Public Library. Haynes in his writing explores the intersections of class, race, gender and generational difference. He believes that interesting fiction most often occurs when writers “trouble the artificial boundaries that are erected to separate individuals and cultures.”   •  Third-Monday early-birds: March 18, Sally Felt, “Effective Blurb Copy”; April 15, Wendi Pierce, “The Anatomy of a Writer’s Blog”; May 20, Kim Jackson, “The Gumption of Assumption: Dissolving the Barriers between Writers and Audiences.”  •  More on the Writers’ Guild of Texas from membership coordinator John Vance,, or critique group coordinator Liz Klein, Send calendar items to Carol Woods at ...