Monday, October 15, 2007

Seven Principles of PR Management

There are 7 principles of public relations management which I adhere to and believe all of us in this profession need to be cognizant of. They emanate from the Arthur Page Society, which is dedicated to best practices in our business and is composed of the top person in communications in the Fortune 500, as well as agency leaders. I am proud to be a part of this group. The 7 principles follow:
  • Tell the truth. Let the public know what's happening and provide an accurate picture of the company's character, ideals and practices.

  • Prove it with action. Public perception of an organization is determined 90 percent by what it does and 10 percent by what it says.

  • Listen to the customer. To serve the company well, understand what the public wants and needs. Keep top decision makers and other employees informed about public reaction to company products, policies and practices.

  • Manage for tomorrow. Anticipate public reaction and eliminate practices that create difficulties. Generate goodwill.

  • Conduct public relations as if the whole company depends on it. Corporate relations is a management function. No corporate strategy should be implemented without considering its impact on the public. The public relations professional is a policymaker capable of handling a wide range of corporate communications activities.

  • Realize a company's true character is expressed by its people. The strongest opinions -- good or bad -- about a company are shaped by the words and deeds of its employees. As a result, every employee -- active or retired -- is involved with public relations. It is the responsibility of corporate communications to support each employee's capability and desire to be an honest, knowledgeable ambassador to customers, friends, shareowners and public officials.

  • Remain calm, patient and good-humored. Lay the groundwork for public relations miracles with consistent and reasoned attention to information and contacts. This may be difficult with today's contentious 24-hour news cycles and endless number of watchdog organizations. But when a crisis arises, remember, cool heads communicate best.

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