First, it was very clear from your responses that members get a lot of value from the CGF when they are able to actively engage – whether that is attending our events, working on our pillar activities and projects, or using our digital platforms. 
Second, and I’m afraid equally clear, many of you do not feel able to engage with us in ways that you find appropriate to your needs. Hence the value that you get from the CGF is lower than it should be for an organisation that is driven by – and run for – its members. 
Third, and contributing to the engagement level, is the fact that many of you are just not aware of all the things that the CGF does. Our events are pretty well known, but our pillar activities still appear to many of you to be a hidden secret!
Your feedback in the survey gave us a lot of ideas as to how we can improve our service to you. It will take us a little while to get through them all. But here are a few of the things that we have been focusing on so far.
We’ve been trying to improve our communications – both to you, our members, and externally. Last month, just before the Summit, we launched our new website, which will eventually bring together all of our digital sites (currently more than 20 of them!). On this website you will also find our new Corporate Brochure, which we launched in April and which tells our story in a much simpler way. You might also have noticed a lot more publicity surrounding the Paris Summit, which has led to much stronger media coverage this year. Finally, I’m excited to be able to announce that just last week we recruited Isabelle Odesser to the new post of Marketing & Communications Director. Isabelle brings a wealth of experience in PR, marketing and digital and most recently worked for Fleishman-Hillard, an international communications consultancy. Her role will include taking forward our communications agenda.
We’ve been striving to deliver more from our pillars. I have spent time with each of our pillars. I have been so impressed by the resource, energy and inspiration that you, as members, bring to the CGF’s two-part mission of increasing industry efficiency and driving positive change. Over the past few months the pillars have been coming up with ideas to: strengthen the value propositions they offer to members; further stretch their aspirations; focus on fewer things; and make progress on measuring their outputs. 
We’ve been planning ahead. All this is just the groundwork. We plainly have lots more to do.  Two of our highest priorities will be finding better ways to engage you in our work – regionally as well as globally, digitally as well as physically – and strengthening the CGF’s membership so that it fully mirrors the shape of both today’s and tomorrow’s consumer industry.

Peter-Freedman--MD-CGF_transpThis post has been written by:

Peter Freedman
Managing Director
The Consumer Goods Forum