Shared Views: PR, Personal Data & Culture

by Rick on February 16, 2012

This is the view of San Francisco from the Vista Park just north of the Golden Gate Bridge. I took this one at about 6:30 a.m. on my way back home after picking up a friend at the airport.  It’s the only time I’ve pulled into that tourist parking area and I’d have missed this great scene if my friend hadn’t asked to stop. I guess I drive past this view so often that I was forgetting to stop and enjoy what a beautiful place I live in. I’m working on fixing that mistake by paying closer attention to what’s around me.

With that, here are some other views that got my attention this week:

Redefining PR: In my first post on this blog, I talked about my belief that PR tools may have changed, but not the job. I don’t think the definition has changed one iota since I was in college over 30 years ago, which boils down to:

  1. Listen to the people who will make a difference in your organization’s future.
  2. Give your best advice on how to get the support needed to succeed.
  3. Share your story with people who count in a clear, concise and credible way.

What’s different? As Thoreau aptly put it, “Men have become the tools of their tools.”

In any case, I’ve seen quite a bit of chatter this past week on PRSA’s recent crowdsourcing effort to arrive at a new definition of PR and here are their three finalists. I don’t think any of these are earth-shatteringly different or good. And reading the Spin Sucks guest post outlining the PRSA Response to PR Definition Criticism didn’t inspire me either.

There have been some lively discussions on this, though. Maddie Grant has an excellent summary and conversation over at Social Fish with a post that asks Why Can’t We Define Public Relations? Long post alert notwithstanding, I recommend you check it out.

Selling our own information: This piece from The New York Times’ BITS blog, Start-Ups Seek to Help Users Put a Price on Their Personal Data got me thinking about the future of social networks. What if they had to pay us to collect and sell our information? Wouldn’t that be a bit disruptive to the current business models? Plus, haven’t we already given most of our information away for free? I think this ship may have already sailed. You?

Success starts with those closest to us: I often give talks about the importance of making employees your first audience for all communications. These two articles aren’t new, but I recently tagged them as good reminders to take care of your own house first: Culture Eats Strategy for Lunch via Fast Company; and, Your Culture is Your Brand from the Zappos archives. Enjoy.

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