Multilingual Business Communication

April 9, 2009

“Visibly Yours”

Filed under: Charlotte De Ruytter, internship — meertaligebedrijfscommunicatie @ 3:57 pm

This is the revealing slogan of Barco, the company that offers display and visualization solutions for several professional markets. Barco produces projectors, displays and digital lightings for markets such as transport, medical imaging, broadcasting, events etcetera.

With such a range of products and markets, Research and Development is one of the core activities of Barco. No need to say that the knowledge that circulates in this company needs to be transparent and under control. That’s why the Human Resources department sets up a project for knowledge management. The purpose of this project is to design a knowledge management framework that builds intellectual capital for sustainable development, draws insight for innovation practive and makes it possible to retain, leverage and share expertise across divisions. I will be making part of this project team, together with 3 other internship students, specialised in other disciplines (electronic engineering and management information systems), from the 4th of May to the 10th of July.

(charlotte de ruytter)


Hear all, see all, say nothing

Filed under: Charlotte De Ruytter, crisis communication — meertaligebedrijfscommunicatie @ 3:26 pm

Banks are in the middle of a crisis, but good crisis communication fails to occur. Only a minority of the banks have mentioned the crisis on their websites during the last months, says communication specialist Weber Shandwick.

It is indeed striking how badly banks communicate in these hard times. Instead of informing their good customers or putting their minds at rest, banks keep their mouths shut. The last update of the file “Dexia and the financial crisis” dates from November last year. As far as I know, a lot has happened ever since. And when was the last time I have heard the slogan of KBC “Come and talk with us” (“kom eens praten”)? This slogan made KBC popular! It seems that in times of crisis, this bank takes its words back and avoids converstations.

Good crisis communication in this situation should involve personal communication. Press releases are not enough. Besides, as home banking is such a popular service, banks should use the internet and their websites to reach their customers.

(Charlotte De Ruytter)

April 5, 2009

Team building “flight” to the death

Filed under: Charlotte De Ruytter, employee communication — meertaligebedrijfscommunicatie @ 12:50 pm

Looking for an exciting job building activity? Try a simulated airplane crash offered by British Airways. For 140 euro a head, employees go aboard of a Boeing 737 in a hangar at Heathrow. A couple of minutes after the takeoff, the plane starts crashing, while all lights go out and the cabin fills with smoke. From the moment the plane hits the ground, the passengers have to get out as fast as they can through the front and rear exits.

According to Andy Clubb from British Airways, this course stimulates the team spirit between the colleagues: “The adrenaline kicks and they all bond together because they go through a stressful environment”.

The team building excercise seems very succesful. At the end of February, British Airways had received more than 350 bookings.

This initiative may look an exciting and original way to please your employees, but not everybody is in to such a spectacular team building day. One may not see the amuzement of such a course because they associate it with great disasters of the 21 century. In my opinion, this is too principal. But I do have my objections: it seems as if British Airways tries to collect money in times of recession, while your company spoils its own budgets. What do you think? Shoud we all go back to paintball shooting or is a recession a good time to make team buildings big business.

(Charlotte De Ruytter)

March 25, 2009

Powder, your partner in cream?

Filed under: Charlotte De Ruytter, company, Laura Moerman, Sophie Naveau — meertaligebedrijfscommunicatie @ 10:53 am

Nowadays, powder is often used as a base for traditional ice cream. It does sound suspect, doesn’t it?
Using powder to create smooth ice cream seems new, but in the world of ice-cream professionals this technique is very common. You might have already enjoyed such an ice cream without even knowing it!

Everybody is familiar with Italy as the ice-cream country par excellence. The Italian brand Pregel, one of the pioneers in ice-cream bases, already has a well-established reputation in our country. As a distributor of the Pregel product, the Belgian dairy company Cowi has acquired expertise in this area. Cowi has now developped its own ice-cream powder: Oro d’Oro. This ice-cream base has been designed especially for the Belgian climate. As 30°C is rather rare in our country, ice cream needs to be more than a mere refreshment. To satisfy the Belgian consumers, ice cream therefore needs to be fuller and richer. Oro d’Oro fulfills these requirements.


Oro d’Oro powder guarantees tasty and smooth ice-cream. You see, powder is not a suspect, it’s a partner!

(Charlotte De Ruytter, Laura Moerman, Sophie Naveau, Nina Vermaesen)

November 1, 2008

McDonald’s new brand identity starring package redesign

Filed under: Charlotte De Ruytter, marketing communication — meertaligebedrijfscommunicatie @ 12:52 pm

McDonald’s wants to respond to the increasing concern about obesity rates and related risks to well-being by investing in a new package design. The global foodservice retailer wants to modernize the brand identity by putting more emphasis on the freshness and the quality of the food and less on the brand’s famous “I’m lovin’ it” tagline.

"There is only one"

The new packages are supposed to enhance the perceptions about the quality of McDonald’s food. Nutrition information and pictures of ingredients such as potatoes, lettuce, wheat, eggs and even farm machinery get the starring role, while the slogan “I’m lovin’ it” ends up on the sides of the new packages. Because they are de-emphasing the tagline, it now seems that every product gets its own slogan: “There is only one” for Bic Mac, “Full steam ahead” for the Filet-o-fish, etcetera are the texts featured on top of the packages, next to pictures of the sandwich or nuggets enclosed.

The redesign was provided by Marketing Store subsidiary Boxer, located in London and Birmingham, England. Experts estimate the cost of the new packaging in the hundreds of millions, not even mentioning the cost of implementation. The new packages will be available in 118 countries and in 56 languages

In any case, McDonald’s food is unhealthy and a new package will not change my mind. However, I understand that McDonalds wants to keep up with current events and react to criticisms.

(Charlotte De Ruytter)

Create a free website or blog at