By Masoumeh Zafarmand
Richard Goldberger has been an IABC member since the fall of 2020. He joined IABC to gain insights on best practices, resources, and to just keep his finger on the pulse to get a general sense of what other organizations and communications pros are doing around the industry. He says, “It’s always interesting to learn about how other communicators and organizations are strategically approaching and managing their communications. It’s refreshing to get that insight or inspiration and allows me to step back to imagine new ways of doing things.”
Richard works as a Communications Specialist with the Alberta Utilities Commission. He has been a part of and lead many communications initiatives in a rather short period of time, including but not limited to strategic communications planning, crisis communications, internal and external communications, graphic design, and social media. That also includes several communications-intensive activities including a website re-design, an office re-location, and of course a global pandemic. Richard considers all these experiences and skillsets among his professional accomplishments.
The most important skill Richard has been able to develop is an ability to be a multi-tool or a generalist. He says, “This includes being able to do a little of everything, whether it’s writing for various audiences, creating graphic designs in Adobe Creative Suite, or strategically planning initiatives for the year. I’ve relished in being exposed to as many different opportunities as possible.”
Not asking for help, trying to do it all by himself has been Richard’s biggest professional mistake. He says, “I have learned just how important collaboration and regularly seeking out feedback and constructive criticism are to developing as a communications professional.”
Richard believes that some of the most influential people in his life have always been those whom he considers demonstrate leadership qualities and attributes that he can learn from. He says, “One of the similarities between all of them is that they could connect with anyone they encountered. They’re charismatic, trustworthy, transparent and incredibly self-aware. It’s these qualities that I, and certainly others, can almost always relate to.” Richard feels fortunate to work with a team of tremendously experienced, savvy and influential individuals at the AUC that he learns from on a regular basis.
Richard’s advice to anyone new to the communication industry is to be a chameleon. Reflecting on his own experiences, he believes that the best ways to learn about, understand and ultimately communicate with others is to be empathetic, understanding and adaptable to new ways of doing things. “Take the time to research, listen to and understand the perspectives of others and what’s important to them.”
Richard recommends any book by Chuck Klosterman. If you’re into essays on obscure music and sports references, nods to early 2000’s pop-culture, and soul-searching hypothetical scenarios, this is your author according to Richard.
Did you know?? Road cycling has become a true passion for Richard. He’s never been so motivated to progress at anything like he has been on a bike. It’s getting harder and harder for him to just go for a casual ride. Richard has also played drums for over a decade and loves to travel having visited three continents over the past three years.