Posted by Matt Gentile
Take me out to the Ballpark... Please
“Make news, not news releases.” That’s what legendary PR pioneer, Aaron Cushman said while in town recently to accept a Lifetime Achievement Award and present to the Florida Public Relations Association Annual Conference held at the Ritz in Sarasota, FL a few weeks ago.
When you think of heroes, many people may think of sports figures like Babe Ruth or political leaders like George Washington. The one common element is their ability to inspire people, whether it is living a moment vicariously through these larger than life figures or fomenting a revolution that will forever change the world, they all have an innate ability to make a change in people’s lives. Well, Mr. Cushman has that awe-inspiring characteristic and is without question a light for all of us PR practitioners out there struggling to find our way in the dark.
Cushman is a one of a kind original. His parents wanted him to be a doctor, lawyer or accountant. In fact, he studied accounting for one year at the University of Illinois, but got called up during WWII. A fate that would ultimately change his professional path. As he told it, “I was flying a bombing run over Europe with flak going off all around me and my buddies screaming and I knew I could never go back to accounting. Cost accounting, give me a break.”
Posted by an Honored Guest
It’s that time of year again, i.e. September is the time to renew your PR Practitioner’s License.
Far fetched? Maybe not. Certainly seems to be a growing movement. Just yesterday the board of directors of The Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) established a task force to explore certification. According to PRSA Chair and CEO Rhoda Weiss, the organization is looking: “to explore professional credentials that could be validated by a outside certification process” with the goal of “a competitive marketplace advantage.”
Of note: Weiss opened her statement saying, “The issue of certification has been discussed, dissected and debated for years.” Indeed, it has. So what’s the hubub now? Hello!! They’re not doin’ it to make friends! The point is that it’s gettin’ pretty wacky out there and if they don’t take hold of the reins, the government will. That would NOT be good.
But according to Toni Muzi Falconi, who’s presently teaching Global Relations at NYU’s Master Program in Public Relations, the pressure seems to be coming from our global partners... as well as, interestingly, the junior ranks. In a class that he is teaching presently, he was surprised to learn that over 60 percent of his students (young up-and-coming professionals from agencies, profit and non-profit organizations) selected “licensing” for their final paper.
We’re thrilled to have Sig. Toni Muzi Falconi weigh in on the topic here today. His words are backed by SERIOUS credentials. Presently, he’s a Senior Counselor at the Italian change-knowledge management consultancy, Methodos. He is the former press attaché and public relations manager of 3M Company in Italy; he’s the former economic and financial editor of the newsweekly L’Espresso, he’s the former editor in chief of the monthly Photo 13 Italiana; he’s the former Director of Communication of Fabbri Editori, then Italy’s largest publisher; and he’s the former head of SCR, Italy’s largest and most prominent public affairs and public relations consultancy. Falconi held the undergraduate chair of Public Relations Theory at IULM University of Milano from 1999 to 2002. He’s taught PR on the postgraduate level at the University of Udine in Gorizia, the University of Bologna in Forli , as well as at IULM University in Milano. Mr. Muzi Falconi is the former President of Ferpi, the Italian Federation of Public Relations. He is also the former Chairman of the Global Alliance for Public Relations and Communication Management.
The guy knows what he’s talkin’ about. Without further ado... Mr. Muzi Falconi:
Posted by an Honored Guest
BIG treat today! We've got a genuine reference piece on the topic of the professional digital divide.
What's that? Well, it happens to be all the rage in the PR Biz today. It's that HUGE, uncomfortable, and growing contradiction that exists presently between PR and PR 2.0. Web evangelists proselytize a paradigm shift; the PR traditionalists cry the end of the profession. And the split isn't just happening from one firm to the next. The battleground is within firms, as well.
Recently, a top exec at powerhouse Ogilvy PR Worldwide was quoted in a major industry trade as saying, "Controlling the message is the old way to do PR and is not applicable anymore." Of course, that set off alarm bells here. We went to battle stations and readied the cannons. "And how would 99 percent of your clients respond to that?," we asked Marcia Silverman, the firm's CEO.
Well... she responded like a seasoned even-keeled pro. Marcia not only navigates the great divide but also articulates the bridge. It is surely a must read and something we all should subsequently discuss.
Without further ado... here's Marcia Silverman:
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