Updated: Jun 24, 2020
Quite simply, we wanted to recognise the most dramatic and challenging time that communicators have ever faced. We wanted to celebrate brilliance in comms during the pandemic. And we also wanted you to take a moment to reflect on what has been achieved in the most extraordinary of circumstances.
Let’s be honest. Nobody had a playbook for this. Even the organisations that arguably should have had a playbook for ‘communicating in a pandemic’ didn’t. Nobody foresaw a world in which the world went into quarantine.
From the outset, communicators have been at the epicentre of their organisations’ responses to COVID-19. They have made sure that every stakeholder, from employees to local communities to investors, have been kept up-to-date and informed while simultaneously providing strategic insight - regularly utilising their famed ability to ‘see around corners’ - to their Boards.
Communicators have relied on their instincts and expertise, drawn on past experiences and responded at a pace never before seen. Job titles have been discarded, as colleagues roll up their sleeves to tackle whatever task is thrown their way. Decision making processes have been truncated. New collaborations have been fostered. Old approaches are out, new and evolving ones are in.
And they’ve done it all without their usual support networks, relying on new - and often unfamiliar - platforms while coping with home schooling, lockdown fever, dodgy broadband and a seemingly endless ‘to do’ list.
We may have tired of the word ‘unprecedented’ but it is hard to find another that better encapsulates this crisis. Across every sector and industry, communicators have risen to the challenge, but as the ‘new normal’ becomes the ‘normal’ they will get swept up with the next challenge and the small victories and achievements of the past few months will become distant - and fading - memories.
The CovidComms Awards are designed to capture these memories - to create an enduring record of the comms work from this period, to explore the lessons learned and to celebrate its brilliance.