About Lynn Al Khatib, Group Head of Communications, Chalhoub Group

Lynn Al Khatib is Group Head of Communication at Chalhoub Group, the largest retailer and distributor of luxury brands in the Middle East and North Africa. She brings over 15 years of corporate and brand communication experience to her current role, which includes building the Group’s corporate brand and communication strategy, managing social media channels, keeping team members informed through internal communications, crisis management, as well as managing external communications and stakeholder relationships.

Lynn joined Chalhoub Group in 2021 after more than two years as the Global Nutrition, Heath, and Wellness Communication Manager at Nestlé S.A, where she worked from the world’s leading food and beverage company’s headquarters in Switzerland on bridging corporate, scientific, and consumer information. She particularly led the development of a modular system that allows brands to communicate their purpose and impact in society.

She had first joined Nestlé as a Corporate Nutritionist at the Company’s Middle East headquarters in Dubai in 2007, leading regional campaigns to bring nutritional science to consumers, the media, and stakeholders in the region.

Later, Lynn established the regional corporate communications strategy at Nestlé Middle East and contributed to building trust in the Company through consistent and credible online and traditional communication.

Lynn holds a Master-Degree in Nutrition and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nutrition and Dietetics from the American University of Beirut.

A proud mother of two boys, Lynn’s personal passion is to help people lead healthier and more active lives.

About her thoughts for the industry

“Over the past few years, and with COVID exponentially driving adoption of communication technologies and tools; we have witnessed a positive evolution of purposeful communication, powered by a strong community of experts. One major shift was in the value and importance of Internal Communication in ensuring transparency, connectivity of employees, strategy alignment and engagement.

As our region gains interest from investors and businesses internationally, we (communication experts) are also contributing to shaping the narrative beyond the existing stereotypes, with stories that share our heritage-inspired-future, are data-driven, and based on regional reports that are going global. I can see a lot of International Publications establishing ‘Arabia’ editions with local offices and chapters, with amazing local talents and success stories, as well as influencers focusing on defining their identity and standing for something.

There is also a shift in mindset of journalists who are playing a greater role in taking their readers on a journey to increase awareness, educating them and contributing to behavioural change on major topics like sustainability by covering the subject ethically and responsibly. 

In addition, there is a big focus on people’s stories, shedding light on future skill sets, what it takes to be a great employer in our day, and how important it is to be purpose-driven in your job, even when you’re not an entrepreneur. 

When it comes to Corporate Affairs, what is great in our region is the strength of private-public sector engagement and collaboration. It is all about realizing that one cannot create solutions alone and it is only through collective efforts and brilliance that we move a few steps closer on our climate actions, tackling societal issues, creating meaningful employment, and building thriving communities and businesses. COP 27 in Egypt last year and this year COP 28 in Dubai are further testament that we are serious about the role MENA plays and the focus on diversifying economies. 

Corporate Communications is now a function on Executive Boards of global multinationals, simply proving the importance of this role in supporting leaders and organizations to navigate challenging business environments. It is no longer a good-to-have with a one-person-show team that does everything. With internal comms at the heart, branding is key to creating unique identities driven by purpose and guided by values. Social media & events are core to employer branding and positioning, and media relations and public affairs could be a major contributor to business results and ESG strategies and solutions. 

Agency or in-house? More like, Agency AND in-house. It is crucial for business leaders to own the relationships, achieve scale and reach together with the support of established esteemed agencies in the region. 

Our collective challenge remains measurement of a true ROI as an industry. In an era of 360 communication channels, paid media and algorithms, and thinner boundaries between marketing and corporate communication, we do a lot of behind-the-scenes support, with deep qualitative added value, beyond sales figures… So, what does success truly look like?”