Multilingual Business Communication

June 13, 2009

Each day is a holiday

Filed under: internship, Karen Decabooter — meertaligebedrijfscommunicatie @ 10:05 pm

Since April 27, I am working as a trainee at Thomas Cook Belgium (TCB). In Belgium, Jetair and TCB are the leading, well matched,  tour operators. However, most people don’t know that Thomas Cook Belgium does not only represent the brand Thomas Cook. In fact, TCB unites three famous brands: Neckermann, Thomas Cook and Pegase. Bekijk de afbeelding op ware grootte   


  You could describe the marketing strategies of the three brands in a nutshell by stating that Thomas Cook wants to be ‘Delhaize’ among the Belgian tour operators, Pegase compares itself to ‘Rob market’ and Neckermann wants to be ‘Colruyt’ in the Belgian tour operator market. On the one hand, these brands have to join forces in order to beat their common competitor Jetair. On the other hand, you can feel that there is also some interbrand competition within the TCB group. 

I am working at the marketing and communication department of Neckermann, where I get the opportunity to make advertisements and competition forms, to attend meetings, to organize sponsor events such as Q Beach House and to work on research projects, etc. I enjoy working in the touristic sector because you are working together with people who all share the same passion, namely travelling. Moreover, Neckermann is working together with interesting companies such as VRT, Q Music, Sanoma Magazines (Humo), Concentra,etc. Although there are many deadlines, working at Thomas Cook Belgium brings you in a holiday mood every day…

(Karen Decabooter)


June 9, 2009

Company reputation and social media

Filed under: Ankie Dees, crisis communication — Tags: , — meertaligebedrijfscommunicatie @ 9:08 pm

According to Deloitte’s 2009 Ethics & Workplace Survey, 74% of workers believe it is easy to damage a brand’s reputation via social networking sites. This result emphasizes an important part of issue and crisis management: corporate culture and employee satisfaction. As social media are getting more and more mainstream, the influence of employees on public opinion is increasing.

“With the explosive growth of online social networks, such as Facebook and Twitter, rapidly blurring the lines between professional and private lives, these virtual communities have increased the potential of reputational risk for many organizations and their brands,” said Sharon Allen, chairman of the board of Deloitte LLP. “While the decision to post videos, pictures, thoughts, experiences and observations is personal, a single act can create far reaching ethical consequences for individuals as well as employers. Therefore, it is important for executives to be mindful of the implications of this connected world and to elevate the discussion about the risks associated with it to the highest levels of leadership.”

Only17 percent of executives surveyed say they have programs in place to monitor and neutralize the possible reputational risks that may appear through social networks. Additionally, while less than a quarter have formal policies on the medium’s use among their people, 49 % of employees indicate that corporate guidelines will not change their behaviour online.

“One-third of employees surveyed never consider what their boss or customers might think before posting material online,” Allen continued. “This fact alone reinforces how vulnerable brands are as a result of the increased use of social networks. As business leaders, it is critical that we continue to foster solid values-based cultures that encourage employees to behave ethically regardless of the venue.”

These values-based corporate cultures should incorporate more employee feedback and participation. When people are able to talk about work-related issues on the work floor itself, they won’t feel the need to turn to third parties. Then,  if a crisis does hit the fan, your employees will be your best allies.


Internal blogs: a tool for project communication

Filed under: Ankie Dees, employee communication — Tags: , — meertaligebedrijfscommunicatie @ 7:50 pm


Is your company’s Knowledge Management system failing? Is it getting nearly impossible to effectively manage crucial documents with your current e-mail applications?  Does key information get buried in a colleague’s inbox, because someone failed to put you in cc?  Then an internal project blog on your corporate intranet might be just the tool you need.

Internal blogging has many advantages over a traditional e-mail system. Of course the blog has to be made accessible to specified individuals and restricted from public view. All the information, ideas and expertise on one or several projects can be centered on the blog. After a project is completed, this blog remains a searchable and structured record.

Sometimes key information completely disappears, for example when someone leaves the company. Usually the old e-mail account becomes dissolved and all the valuable information that used to live there, goes into data purgatory. “It’s forever lost,” says Anil Dash, chief evangelist for Six Apart. “If it’s in a blog, it doesn’t disappear when that person leaves.” With blogs, documents and other information about respective projects remains on the intranet, and critical information is accessible to all who want to see it and who have permission to see it.

With an internal blog as a central point where information flows are captured, everyone who participates and reads it gets up-to-date quickly. This will make your internal meetings more effective. When new people start working on a project, they can review the internal blog’s content and will be able to jump straight in with a clear understanding of how the project evolved.


“From Great People to Great Performance”

Filed under: Lana Robignon — meertaligebedrijfscommunicatie @ 4:50 pm

That’s what Hudson, one of the leading consulting firms in the field of Human Resources, is all about. By aligning their expertise with the needs of their clients, they play a crucial role in many organisations worldwide.

The pace of business is accelerating: everything is continuously changing and developing. Businesses and markets are becoming increasingly complex. By recognising that people are the key to success, companies can become long-term winners. Attracting, developing and retaining the best people has therefore become a top priority in many organisations.

Hudson helps unleash that human potential. Not only do they offer recruitment and selection services, they want to provide their clients with global solutions, going from organisational and individual development to reward management. Their wide array of activities makes sure that they can offer any kind of service when the need arises.

Due to all of these reasons, I am proud to be starting my internship in two weeks at the Research & Development Department of Hudson, Ghent. Not only will it give me the opportunity to gain experience in a totally new field for me, it’s also quite exciting that the tools, designed in Ghent, will be used all over the world and in all Hudson companies. Knowing that I will soon be a part of that process makes me eager to start. I’m truly looking forward to it.

Lana Robignon

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