Insights of Communication
Promiti Prova Chowdhury
Photos: Ahmed Islam
The speakers with newly enrolled students of the MSS programme.
The University of Liberal Arts Bangladesh (ULAB) arranged a conference on communication management and leadership on June 2 at the Hotel Washington in Gulshan. With the theme 'Leadership in Challenging Times', the conference had Professor Brian Shoesmith, Visiting Professor at Edith Cowan University, Australia as the chief guest. Aftab Ul Islam, President, American Chamber of Commerce and Debasish Deb, Country Manager, Coca-Cola Far East Ltd were present as speakers. Professor Jude William Genilo, Head of the Department of Media Studies and Journalism (MSJ), ULAB also presented a paper on Communication Management in Bangladesh. Professor Imran Rahman, Vice-Chancellor of ULAB presided over the session.
In the opening remarks, Professor Imran Rahman highlighted the core value of ULAB, which is 'active learning'. He said that the newly launched Masters of Social Science (MSS) in Media Studies and Journalism is carefully crafted having 'Communication' at its core. Professor Brian
Shoesmith said, Communication is the key to harness knowledge and leadership. The Department of Media Studies and Journalism (MSJ) at ULAB started its journey with only 20 students whereas now there are 800 undergraduates. The media industry is also flourishing as more and more jobs are created. The new MSS programme aims to bring out students who can lead this industry with great communication skills. One has to have the charisma to pass through the pipeline in this highly competitive industry, be it electronic, print or new media.
The guest speakers highlighted the importance of communication management and leadership during turbulent situation giving examples from their respective companies. Debasish Deb, Country Manager of Coca-Cola Far East Ltd said, “Why do the top officials of a company communicate? A vital reason is to build reputation. Reputation plays a great role in achieving business goals.” The title of his presentation was 'How communication has helped Coco-Cola in Bangladesh to lead business forward'. He also said that communication skill is an underrated, but extremely powerful skill in our country. Students have to learn how to communicate during the time of crisis, which is an important aspect of management technique. “A minimum good product with a great reputation can weave its way, but a great product with extremely bad reputation cannot go a long way. So building reputation through communication is essential,” claimed Debasish Deb.
Aftab-Ul-Alam described how a good leader maintains his leadership skills. A good leader is well aware of the context of the society where his work station operates. His body language should be pleasant. He should know the culture, religion, trends and heritage of the people whom he has to lead. “80% of the work of a CEO is done through communication. It includes virtual, verbal, intra-company and inter-company communication. In fact, efficiency of a leader is judged by his or her communication skills.” He added that hard skills are learned through books, but the soft skill, which is communication skill, is learnt through working in the practical field. And in today's world the best communicators reach the peak of success.
Sarker Maswood Hasan, CEO of Concito PR was present at the conference along with the faculty members of both undergraduate and masters programme of MSJ-ULAB. A question-answer session was held and Plaque of Appreciation was presented to the speakers.
Did You Know?
Artist, Illustrator and Writer, Maurice Bernard Sendak was born in Brooklyn, on 10 June, 1928 (today is his 84th birth anniversary) and passed away on 8 May, 2012. Sendak described his childhood as a "terrible situation" because of his extended family's dying in the Holocaust, which exposed him to death and the concept of mortality at an early age. His love of books began at an early age, when he developed health problems and was confined to his bed. He decided to become an illustrator after watching Walt Disney's film 'Fantasia' at the age of twelve. One of his first professional commissions was to create window displays for the toy store F A O Schwarz. His illustrations were first published in 1947 in a textbook titled 'Atomics for the Millions' by Dr Maxwell Leigh Eidinoff. He spent much of the 1950s illustrating children's books written by others before beginning to write his own stories. Sendak gained international acclaim after writing and illustrating 'Where the Wild Things Are.' The book's depictions of fanged monsters concerned some parents when it was first published, as his characters were somewhat grotesque in appearance. Before 'Where the Wild Things Are,' Sendak was best known for illustrating Else Holmelund Minarik's Little Bear series of books.
Information source: Internet.