This week in PR (26 April)

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.

G'night Mary Ann g'night John Joe g'night Bobby Sue (by @drewbenvie on Instagram)
G'night Mary Ann g'night John Joe g'night Bobby Sue (by @drewbenvie on Instagram)

In the news


  • Robert Minton-Taylor: My future (25 April)
    ‘After 50 years in public relations and journalism, including 24 years teaching PR at Leeds Beckett University, I have decided to step down from my role as a senior lecturer at Leeds Business School.’

Insights and opinions: 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

Purpose and professionalism

  • Jan Gooding: The gift of mistakes (25 April)
    ‘I hate admitting I was wrong about something as much as the next person. It’s also not easy saying sorry, explaining what led you to make a poor decision, and how you plan to make amends. But I am convinced it is an act of strength rather than weakness.’

Consulting, careers and skills

  • Adrian Wheeler: PRCA at 50: More Maths, More Magic (no date)
    ‘PR is an odd mixture of maths and magic. It is unlike any other professional business service: part-science, part-art. PR people seem to come from anywhere. They are a bit like each other but PR is unlike any other form of consultancy.’
  • Harry Gardiner and Isobel Arrowsmith: PRCA PRcast – Episode 6 – Kirsty Leighton [podcast] (23 April)
    ‘Two years ago Milk & Honey was born: just me on my own for the first three months. Now we’re up to 14 and are on target for a million pounds turnover.’
  • Ben Smith with Dee Gibbs: Dee Gibbs, founder of Liberty Communications, on the PRmoment podcast (April 23)
    ‘It was liberation for me coming out of corporate life. That’s where the name came from.’
  • Claire Walker: How to match what the client wants with what the agency delivers (23 April)
    ‘There are ways that a client and agency can work together to be sure there is never this gulf of expectation and delivery. But what are they? And how can we ensure that both agencies and clients can work together rather than apart?’
  • Brad Johnson: Strategic thinking for comms professionals: the TOWS analysis (22 April)
    ‘Given their simplicity, it is a good idea to undertake a TOWS analysis for everything you do as a communications team. It might take 30 minutes, but it forces you to consider the internal and external environment before committing finances and resources to any campaign.’
  • Advita Patel: Embracing your inner imposter… (19 April)
    ‘Imposter syndrome was first discovered by psychologists Suzanna Imes and Pauline Rose Clance in the 70s. At that time they thought Imposter syndrome only impacted successful women. But since then, it’s been widely recognised that more than 40 percent of high achieving people experience this syndrome.’

Politics and public affairs

  • Paul North: Cannabis campaigning: The boy who changed the law (25 April)
    ‘On 1 November 2018, it became legal to prescribe cannabis on the NHS to patients in the UK. While there is a great deal of work to do (the current guidelines still prevent Billy from obtaining in the UK the cannabis oil that he needs to stop his seizures), the walls of resistance seem to have crumbled. Legal use of medicinal cannabis is a reality.’
  • Stuart Thomson: How to challenge your political bias (24 April)
    ‘Public affairs may focus on politics, political communications and Parliament but we should all be aware of the danger of becoming too political sometimes.’

Public and third sectors

Gender, diversity and wellbeing

Brands and influence

Trust, crisis and reputation

Internal communication

  • Katie Macaulay with Bruce Daisley: The Internal Comms Podcast: Episode 8 – The Joy of Work (23 April)
    ‘If our job involves thinking, ingenuity and inventiveness then our decision making suffers if we demand more of our brain. Exhausting ourselves is a bad way to do our job. We should have a purge on our meetings. We should have a purge on our emails.’
  • Ann-Christin Korsing with Ross Wigham: How internal communication works in the NHS Gateshead – 10 Questions for the Head of Communications (23 April)
    ‘You always have to be learning. Part of that is reading and keeping up to date with all the latest blogs and networks. The rest is about getting out and about and learning what everyone does.’
  • Helen Deverell: Creating a brand identity (22 April)
    ‘I’m often asked by in-house internal communicators about freelance life and I know many of you are considering it. One of the biggest things for me over the last three years has been understanding what my offering is, what makes me unique and how this translates into a brand.’

Campaigns and creativity

  • Holly Ashford: Opinion: Why the pen is mightier than the pixel (23 April)
    ‘Images have impact, but for conveying (with substance) opinion, messaging, propositions and vision, it’s carefully-crafted written content that’s needed – and will sit at the heart of many PR and marketing campaigns.’

Research and evaluation

Technology and AI

  • Paul Sutton: How to Tackle Technological Change (23 April)
    ‘Technology affects every single person working in communications today, and that’s equally as true if you’re the Internal Communications Manager for a council as it is if you’re the Public Relations Director for a consumer brand.’

Media and digital


CommsSchool Facebook group

  • Orlagh Shanks: Why You Need to Think About Your Personal Brand (24 April)
    ‘Your personal brand is how people perceive you online. Be that your friends, strangers or connections through social media. What kind of vibe do you give off? What do you tweet about, what do you post on Instagram and what subjects do you write about?’
  • Stephen Waddington: Listening, joining conversations and exploring communities (23 April)
    ‘We’d encourage anyone starting out in their career to sign up to Twitter and build a network. Start listening to the conversations. You’ve effectively built a crude monitoring system for your sector. If that’s all you do, you’ll find it valuable to gaining insights into your chosen profession.’