Monday, January 28, 2008

Why Public Relations?

Last week a harried colleague from the industry called up to ask that his management is asking him to explain as to why their organisation needs public relations? This is the question perhaps still taking the round of corporate circles primarily because most of the work relates to intangibles, and also because, majority of our PR practitioners have not started using the measuring techniques of their PR efforts.
Another significant aspect of PR is its role as a strategic management function. PR has, unfortunately, remained limited to media coverage and the amount of photographs or clips one can generate. Since PR is not a substitute for truth or the good work, the PR practitioner must set the agenda for the corporates to prepare itself to address larger issues since existence of every organisation impacts a large number of stakeholders. Therefore the moment we profile our stakeholders and address the issues that concern them directly or indirectly, there is whole lot of PR deliverables needed to generate goodwill and better understanding about the organisation through appropriate communication, which, at times, goes beyond mere media relations.
The challenge for the PR practitioners today is to understand the professional aspect of their calling, so that no one asks them 'Why PR?'