Membership Spotlight – Sarah Loeffler

On a continuous basis, IABC Nashville spotlights its diverse members through a Q&A feature. We are pleased to showcase Sarah Loeffler, Content Manager at Tanner Corporate Services.

 

sarah-loeffler-headshotIABC: What is your background?

Sarah: I received my Bachelor of Arts in English, with a concentration in technical writing, and through that, was able to experience different types of jobs in communication. My background is in technical writing, editing, journalism, training, performance support, leadership development, content management, content strategy, and knowledge management consulting.

 

IABC: How did you get started in this business?

Sarah: Being an avid reader and writer, this profession came somewhat naturally to me. At a very basic level, working with words and crafting the perfect sentence or paragraph has continued to challenge and fascinate me throughout my life. The real starting point of my career was in college when I worked for a literacy agency to help them document and publish their internal training processes and materials. Moving into knowledge management and content management was a logical progression when I moved to Nashville shortly after graduation.

 

IABC: What is your current position and business affiliation? How long have you been in this role?

Sarah: My current position is Content Manager at Tanner Corporate Services. I have served in this role for a year, and have worked at Tanner for three years. I am our chief content coordinator and am responsible for the development and delivery of client materials. I manage our contracted authors and work directly with clients to evaluate, document, and improve their company’s content, for both print and digital formats.

 

IABC: What makes your business/organization stand out?

Sarah: At Tanner, we work closely with our clients to capitalize on the valuable organizational knowledge their employees possess, an often overlooked asset. We provide practical communication strategies and solutions to support client business objectives. We capture, organize, and distribute organizational knowledge to the right people at the right time to help employees make better decisions and customers experience products and services as intended. We mine what client employees know and shape it for distribution to targeted groups of employees and customers. Managing organizational knowledge has never been more important than in this age of information. As consultants, we bring clear vision and fresh perspective to content dilemmas. As technical writers, we have the expertise and technology to strengthen and enhance content deliverables.

 

IABC: If you could describe yourself in three (3) words, what would it be?

Sarah: Compassionate – Driven – Adventurous

 

IABC: Tell something about yourself people would be surprised to learn.

Sarah: One of my passions is singing in choirs. I have traveled to Austria, Germany, Ireland, and Italy with various touring choirs, and most recently this past year, I performed at Carnegie Hall in New York City.

 

IABC: What lesson(s) have you learned along the way that you believe has made you a better communications professional?

Sarah: Some of the most valuable lessons I have learned include the ability to blend creativity with conventionalism, keeping an open mind, knowing your audience, and not making assumptions. Effective communication is more than good copywriting, it’s about expanding and broadening the ways you communicate and the tools you use to communicate so that your messages arrive clearly, concisely, and conveniently.

 

IABC: What makes an effective communications leader?

Sarah: An effective communications leader needs to have a deep understanding of people and the ability to connect with people through the words and images they use to produce a desired outcome. An effective communicator is a problem solver. They understand the lessons and rules of the past and remain abreast of current trends to find the most suitable solution for the communication need.

 

IABC: What do you feel is the greatest benefit of IABC?

Sarah: The greatest benefits of IABC are the networking and professional development aspects. The members are friendly and knowledgeable, and the guest speakers are inspiring and enlightening. The relationships I’ve built as a result of IABC have been invaluable to my career development. Also, being able to experience the current happenings of this growing, changing city through the lens of communications has equipped me to excel both professionally and personally.

 

IABC: What prompted you to join IABC?

Sarah: I was new to my career and new to the Nashville area, and wanted to gain some professional development opportunities beyond those available to me at the organization I work for. Being at a small company, it’s easy to get stuck in our little bubble, so I wanted to meet other professionals in similar fields. Beth Tanner, the owner and president of Tanner Corporate Services, spoke highly of IABC and suggested it to me, even took me to a few luncheons. I had attended meetings with several other networking groups in Nashville and felt the most “at home” with IABC. This year, I was thrilled to have the opportunity to help plan IABC Nashville’s re-launch of the Music City Gold Pen Awards event.

 

 

 

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