Lenka Černá, CEO of ANNONCE and ICMA Board Member
Last August I was appointed CEO of ANNONCE , the only nation-wide Czech classified dedicated to providing and facilitating trade and services (both on and offline) to its customers. ANNONCE was established in March 1990 as a print medium, going digital in 1997, with 300,000 registered users and 350,000 unique users per month.
As I settled into my job, I was, as you can imagine, very excited. One of the first things on my list was to restore our organisation’s membership with ICMA.
Soon after re-joining, I attended the ICMA SoLoMo Istanbul Conference in November 2012, where I was very pleasantly surprised by the friendly atmosphere amongst both the delegates and vendor exhibitors. I was especially impressed with the ‘Sharing Best Practice’ sessions, where attendees worked together to share successes, failures, and (as the title states) best practice within their respective companies. We also tackled the numbers behind it all, and were able to ask our colleagues in the field HOW and WHY they were able to achieve them. Considering many of the participants were direct competitors, this transparency was especially unique!
At the ‘Business Leaders Forum’, I was seated amongst top managers who openly and objectively discussed the problems occurring in our trade. We also debated the future of the industry, the direction of advertising media, and the risks that come with running our particular types of organisations. The knowledge and insights I gained there, as well as the contacts I made within the industry, were immeasurable.
And it just kept getting better! The following conference took place in Cologne in April of this year, (‘Marketplace Innovations‘), with speakers representing Schibsted, Sanoma, Immobilien Scout GmbH, and Amazon, to name a few. The ICMA Spring conference also brought the best in classifieds innovations to the forefront, with the annual ‘ICMA Classified Media Innovation Awards’, presented in partnership with Vabimu.
I’m thrilled that the upcoming ‘Expanding Beyond Classifieds’ conference (13-16 November) will be taking place in my hometown of Prague. It’s going to be another fruitful week of information sharing, inspiration, and great speakers. And I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the social side of it all. I’m really looking forward to the after-hours activities as well, when I can show off this beautiful city to my fellow-delegates. But most of all, I look forward to our 3 ½ days together, because these are tough times for our industry, and friendships between managers and competitors are incredibly valuable and, unfortunately, increasingly scarce.
But don’t take my word for it; register now and find out why I’m so proud to be a part of this great organisation!