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Chapter 15 notes

Earning a Seat at the Table: Defining The Professional Communicator‟s Role Former U.S.

Secretary of State Henry Kissinger – who knew a thing or two about bureaucratic infighting — observed that leaders listen to advisors whose views they think they need, not those who insist on a hearing because of the organizational chart.

the marginalization typically is grounded in how the communication function – and hence the leaders of that function – are defined.  These include:

  • Being cast as an implementor: the head of communication is seen as a doer rather than as a leader.
  • Being cast as a tactician: whether the head of communication is implementing or managing the function, communication is seen as solely as a tool or tactic, and not as part of the strategic focus of the enterprise.
  • Being cast as part of a functional area: the head of communication is seen as a writer, or as a media person, or as a technology person, and not as having enterprise-wide standing to offer advice beyond the narrow functional area

Source: Reputation Management

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Chapter 14 notes

– Public relations consultants work in firms that offer communication advice and services to clients – for a fee. Consultants must balance the interests of clients, employees and the firm‟s owners.

– This “triple squeeze” creates unique challenges for managers and adds an extra dimension of reward – and stress – to what is already a challenging profession.

Dr. Gitlow describes Deming‟s theory of management as based on four  paradigms:

1. People are most effectively motivated and inspired by a mix of intrinsic and extrinsic rewards.  Intrinsic motivation comes from the sheer joy of performing an act, and releases human energy that can be focused into improvement and innovation of a system.

2. Manage using both a process and results orientation, not only a results orientation. Management’s job is to improve and innovate the processes that create results, not just to demand results

3. Management’s function is to optimize the entire system so that everyone wins, not to maximize only his or her component of the system. Managers must understand that individuals, organizations, and systems of organizations are interdependent.

4. Cooperation works better than competition. In a cooperative environment, everybody wins. Customers win products and services they can brag about. The firm wins returns for investors and secure jobs for employees. Suppliers win long-term customers for their products. The community wins an excellent corporate citizen.

Source: Reputation Management

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“Corporate responsibility must evolve from being seen as an unwanted cost to being recognized as an intrinsic part of a healthy business model, an investment that creates competitive advantage and helps a company achieve profitable, sustainable growth.”

– Demonstrating corporate responsibility is a key challenge for business leaders, and effective communication is a central element of every successful corporate responsibility program.

– Corporate responsibility means meeting the expectations of stakeholders; it goes beyond philanthropy and legal compliance.

– The first challenge is defining corporate responsibility. Companies use “corporate responsibility,” “corporate social responsibility,” “corporate citizenship,” “business ethics” and “sustainability” interchangeably to describe corporate initiatives ranging from philanthropy, to legal compliance, to social and environmental programs.

The business case for adopting responsible corporate practices includes:

  • managing and mitigating risk
  • protecting and enhancing reputation, brand equity and trust
  • attracting, motivating and retaining talent
  • improving operational and cost-efficiency
  • ensuring a license to operate
  • developing new business opportunities and
  • creating a more secure and prosperous operating environment

Source: Reputation Management

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Effective crisis response––including both in what a company does and what it says––provides companies with a competitive advantage and can even enhance reputation. In particular, companies that handle crises well tend to protect those things they hold most dear, including:

  • Stock price
  • Operations
  • Employee morale and productivity
  • Business relationships
  • Demand for their products
  • Support of public policymakers
  • Strategic focus.

– Whether a company survives a crisis with its reputation, operations, and financial condition intact is determined less by the severity of the crisis––the underlying event –– than by the timeliness and quality of its response to the crisis.

– The single largest contributor to reputational and other harm in the aftermath of a crisis is perception of indifference, especially when there are victims.

Source: Reputation Management

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Issues Management Overview

Issues management is a corporate process that helps organizations identify challenges in the business environment—both internal and external—before they become crises and mobilizes corporate resources to help protect the company from the harm to reputation, operations, and financial condition that the issue may provoke. Issues management is a subset of risk management, but the risks it deals with are public visibility and reputational harm.

The elements of a typical issues management structure are:

1. Governance.  There needs to be some senior body to whom the standing issues management team reports.  That governance structure is responsible for review and approval of major recommendations and plans; identification and assignment of resources to manage issues; and supervision of the work of the issues management team.

2. Issues Management Team.  This is a standing group of people who represent core functional areas across the organization (e.g., legal, manufacturing, human resources, public relations, marketing/advertising, sales, security, administration, information technology, etc.).  It meets on a set schedule, and also whenever a pressing or breaking issue warrants.

 

Source: Reputation Management

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Web involvement allows marketers to better understand two key positioning questions:

(1) Who are the potential customers, and (2) does the product fit their needs? Answers add to traditional demographic, geographic, and lifestyle information. The process is abbreviated as STP: segmentation, targeting, and positioning. If a firm can solve its positioning problem, it can address its marketing mix.

Effective persuasion

Organizational behavior professor Jay Conger pointed to four essential steps in effective persuasion: (1) establish credibility, (2) frame your goals in a way that identifies common ground with your audience (positioning), (3) reinforce your position by using vivid language and compelling evidence, and (4) connect emotionally with your audience.

 

Source: Reputation Management

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Global Model.

―Global public relations superimposes an overall perspective on a program executed in two or more national markets, recognizing the similarities among audiences while necessarily adapting to regional differences. It connotes a planning attitude as much as geographic reach and flexibility.

Multinational Model.

―International PR practitioners often implement distinctive programs in multiple markets, with each program tailored to meet the often acute distinctions of the individual market.

The Global Corporate Communication Role

Most global corporate communication practitioners have responsibility for the following functions:

  • Employee communication
  • Media relations
  • Corporate identity and brand management
  • Public and community relations
  • Crisis communication
  • Public affairs /Government relations
  • Investor relations
  • Annual report and other publications
  • Corporate social responsibility/sustainability/philanthropy
  • Influencer relations (industry analysts, academia)
  • Executive positioning
  • Corporate publishing and production including Web site

Source: Reputation Management

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