This week in PR (18 May)

About the author

Richard Bailey Hon FCIPR is editor of PR Academy's PR Place Insights. He teaches and assesses undergraduate, postgraduate and professional students.

Liberty Island @ajdevenish on Instagram
Liberty Island @ajdevenish on Instagram

News in brief

  • Among the winners at the PR Week Global Awards were Weber Shandwick (global agency of the year), Aedhmar Hynes of Text 100 (global professional, agency) and Kirsten Walkom, Save the Children International (global professional, in-house).
  • A parliamentary select committee has published its report into the collapse of Carillion. ‘Carillion’s rise and spectacular fall was a story of recklessness, hubris and greed.’
  • More than a dozen towns and cities have submitted bids to host Channel 4 when it moves its headquarters out of London.


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Thought leaders: Pick of the posts

These are the editor’s pick of posts about public relations this week (UK focused, but with a global outlook). Recommendations are welcome to or @pr_place

Business / profession

  • Charlie Pownall: Protecting and respecting your privacy – wherever you are (16 May)
    ‘Initially fairly daunting for a small operator, I came to appreciate that the GDPR also presents an opportunity to build strong relationships and trust on the basis of a real commitment to the security, privacy and confidentiality of my clients and the users of my website and other channels.’
  • Russell Goldsmith with Anne Gregory and Jon White: Platinum Podcast: PR as a strategic management function [podcast] (16 May)
    ‘We see CEOs and those in senior management positions looking more and more to communication advisers to make sense of the world around them and to help them respond to the demands that are placed on them. It’s about leadership with communication at its heart.’
  • David Phillips interviews Herbert Heitmann: Where business strategy meets communications (16 May)
    ‘Over the last 10 years I noticed that classic management consultancies, sometimes even banks or legal institutions, are increasingly providing communication, reputation and brand-related advice to the C-Suite. They clearly have the attention of the C-Suite while public relations/public affairs agencies, the experts in this field, somehow lost touch with the C-Suite.’
  • David Brain: Why are the global PR agencies stuck? Does it matter? (16 May)
    ‘Whilst I did not experience losing business to the big management consultancies, I do believe less heavyweight reputation or change communications work is coming our way because they are quietly soaking it up.’
  • Stephen Benzikie: Suddenly, I’m not half the man I used to be… (15 May)
    ‘Relationships, points of difference and added value are what’s really important. Those who succeed in the Used to Be world will focus on their current relevance to clients, customers or business partners, not on what they used to offer in their illustrious pasts.’
  • Sarah Hall: Communications offers the NHS its greatest lifeline (15 May)
    The [#FuturePRoof] chapters are jam packed with expertise from a forward-thinking cohort of comms leaders and advisers, striving to reinforce the strategic value of public relations within their organisations.’
  • Roger Darashah: Debate is Being Replaced by ‘Argument Lite’, and the Public Relations Industry is Poorer as a Result (15 May)
    The public relations industry should be concerned about this decline; true debate is the basis of our profession.’
  • John Brown: Different or distinctive? Which one do you focus on? [vlog] (15 May)
    ‘Don’t ask yourself ‘what makes us different.’. Ask yourself ‘ how you can we become more distinctive’.’
  • Cornelius Alexander: Public Relations v Publics Relations (14 May)
    ‘Now, communities and minority groups are learning how to use the mainstream media to talk directly to other groups and decisions makers. Yes, to their publics.’

Careers and skills

Gender and diversity

Internal communication

  • Saskia Jones: Free internal comms plan template (14 May)
    ‘Don’t over-complicate it with pages of information. By spending time perfecting your plan and ‘lining up all your ducks in a row’ you are putting off action.’
  • Jenni Kampf: Engaging with stressed employees? (14 May)
    ‘Are the practices our organisations put in place actually helping with staff wellbeing? Do people feel supported? Wellbeing should be a key metric in staff surveys so we can track attitudes and sentiment over time and see the impact of any new activities.’
  • Helen Deverell: IoIC Live 18: Transforming reputation from the inside out (13 May)
    ‘Internal communication is on the precipice of change and I think the fact a conference on how we impact organisational reputation sold out and had the longest waiting list we’ve had in 22 years, is testament to that.’
  • Jess Roberts: Three things you need to know from IoIC Live 2018 – day one (12 May)
    ‘There’s been significant growth in IoIC membership in the last year. This says something about IC as a profession, its growing importance and the power it has.’

Media and digital