Non-travelers often warn the traveler of dangers, and the traveler dismisses such fears, but the presumption of hospitality is just as odd as the presumption of danger. You have to find out for yourself. Take the leap. Go as far as you can. Try staying out of touch. Become a stranger in a strange land. Acquire humility. Learn the language. Listen to what people are saying. It was as a solitary traveler that I began to discover who I was and what I stood for.
--Paul Theroux, Fresh Air Fiend (2000)
There are two primary choices in life: to accept conditions as they exist, or accept the responsibility for changing them. --Denis Waitley
A child on a farm sees a plane fly by overhead and dreams of a faraway place A traveler on the plane sees the farmhouse and dreams of home. --Carl Burns
I write for the same reason I breathe -- because if I didn't, I would die. -- Isaac Asimov
What you've done becomes the judge of what you're going to do - especially in other people's minds. When you're traveling, you are what you are right there and then. People don't have your past to hold against you. No yesterdays on the road. --William Least Heat Moon, Blue Highways
God's gifts put man's best dreams to shame. --Elizabeth Barrett Browning
I quote others in order to better express my own self. --Montaigne
Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry and narrow-mindedness. --Mark Twain
The most essential gift for a good writer is a built-in, shockproof shit detector. This is the writer's radar and all great writers have had it. --Ernest Hemingway
It's the writing that teaches you. --Isaac Asminov
As my focus has changed from overall public relations to internal communications in my day-to-day worklife, I have went on the hunt for more IC-related blogs. I have found a few and have added them to my resources blogroll. Here are two that I am find particularly interesting and insightful... Change & Internal Communications and Intranet Blog. If you write one or know of some that I don't have listed, please comment and point me in its/their direction.
If this isn't an indication of the state of advertising, I don't know what is. The AAAAhas hired global PR firm GolinHarris to help them with reputation management.
In the communications industry, it is often debated what is more effective...advertising or public relations. (Remember Al Ries' book The Fall of Advertising & The Rise of PR. Check out an three facts from Al about the PR vs. Advertising debate). Well, both have their pros and cons and certainly both have their reputation issues, but as many people in business know, it is getting more and more expensive to dish out the dough for advertising. With more awareness and understanding of public relations, the dollars are moving away from ads and moving toward PR.
There is a lot of talk lately in the media and within the healthcare industry about apologizing when things go wrong. The talk is is that this is a NEW approach. Does anyone else see anything wrong with this? Why is this a new approach? Shouldn't this have been the approach all along? Being human and admitting one's mistakes and having compassion for people and families is a new approach?? Ugh!
This is where publics relations and the legal world collide. As mentioned in this Indianapolis Star article that I read that prompted this post, such an apology approach would have been unheard of years ago because "lawyers and insurance companies would not have allowed it and hospitals would have feared a backlash."
Now, I understand the reasons for refraining from disclosing information...the admission of guilt would be devastating to a legal case and to insurance costs. But, if the incident truly occured, isn't it going to come out in court/arbitration anyway...and why not be open and honest and compassionate with people right from the start?
I think about it like this... If I were to borrow a friend's sweater, wear it and accidently spill something on it to the point that it is irreparable, would I simply give it back, ruined and not explain what happened, apologize or offer to compensate her? OR if I were to be driving and hit a bicyclist and hurt him/her, would I simply drive off and not stop, call 911, get help, apologize to the person and the person's family and offer to be by their side throughout the process and eventually have to talk through what happened and show how sorry and distraught I was? Of course I would not just give back the sweater or drive off. I would apologize and do the right thing. And most people would in those situations. So why have hospitals and doctors have done this for so long? Fear, legal departments and comprising integrity.
Well, I think it is awesome that hospitals are wanting to start to do the right thing and get back to treating people with respect. This will go a long way with their patients, patients' families and for their reputations. I am glad to see that legal folks and PR people are sitting down and coming together on what is right . Afterall, ethical behavior = PR, lies = spin, and when dealing with human life, no one appreciates spin.
I recently attended the first annual Alphabet Bash, and my friend Leah and I made it on the website. This premier networking event was a collaboration of the Minnesota chapters of PRSA, IABC, AdFed and AMA. It was a wonderful event held at one of Minneapols' newest nightclubs Trocaderos, and one that was very instrumental in building many good relationships between communications professionals in the Twin Cities. Here are some networking tips from this year's event. I am very much looking forward to next year's.
You might be wondering where the heck I have been? Considering I just came out with a new blogging schedule and everything and then, well, nothing.
Well, I could come up with lame-o excuses like I have been lazy or I have falling into blog out, but I won't do that. I am gonna tell you all about my real and exciting excuses for not blogging that I have been living this last month.
As a surprise to me and others, I have recently accepted and started an internal communications position with Macy's North in Minneapolis. I wasn't necessarily looking for a new full-time job, but I wasn't not looking either. Frankly, this position fell into my lap at the right time for me. I was burning out at my former job as I was constantly running into roadblocks -- human roadblocks -- that sometimes is the case in public relations. My time there was spent developing strategies and tactical plans for people who understood they needed PR, but could not face the music (mirror) once someone presented it to them. So, as I continually reminded myself that I did know what I was doing and continued to churn out press releases, I stumbled upon an opportunity with Macy's.
Now, I have been working with Macy's North division for about three weeks and am thoroughly enjoying the positive, open-to-communications environment. I have lots to learn yet, of course, but I am loving the change and am loving the employee-oriented culture.
So, as I find myself in a different environment and with much different and more focused responsibilities than in the past, I will most likely be changing my blog content a bit. You may notice that I will shift and discuss more internal communications and employee engagement than in the past.
Other than the new job, I have been scattered doing other things as well. This summer, I recently planned and held my first 10 year class reunion. I did not do it alone; I worked with a group of five others, but there was a lot of work to do. We held it on July 29th, and we had a great time.
I also have been working with a local non-profit Bolder Options and assisting them with a fundraising intiative called Minnesota On Board. I am helping them with media relations and assisted in sending out media introduction kits. Come the launch of the actual game, it's modeled after the famous Monopoly game, I will be helping with media relations surrounding the launch and sale of the games.
Plus, I have been working with Today's Groom Magazine to assist them with publicizing a few events they had and are having.
And, I still moonlight at Outback two nights a week to pull in spending money.
And in the midst of everything else, I have been trying to enjoy the very short summer here in the Midwest. Matthew and I spent time in Woodruff/Minocqua recently to welcome my sister and her family back to the Midwest (from Florida). And, we will spend Labor Day weekend canoeing and camping along the Crow Wing River in north central Minnesota to soak up what we have left of reasonable weather before the snow flies.
Hence...the month long hiatas from blogging. But, I am back and getting settled into my new job and ready to blog again.
As an IABC member, I received a letter today from the University of Wisconsin - River FallsMarketing Communications Department. They are surveying Twin Cities public relations practitioners about their needs regarding educational preparedness of the graduates. The feedback from the survey they are doing will determine if they create and offer a public relations and advertising certificate in their marketing communications program.
If you want to learn more about podcasting and how to utilize podcasting in your business, be sure to check out the Women's International Podcasting Expo that starts tonight and runs throughout the weekend. There are three FREE seminars and many others on the schedule worth checking out. I've registered and plan to attend those seminars that I can. If you are interested and plan to attend, click though my referral URL to register.
I am certainly curious to how this virtual expo works and will report on it and the seminars next week.
Forward Blog is now offering a regular series of PR 101-type blog posts called "PR Guides." Their first one is about internal communication, something that I have top-of-mind right now as I am advocating for and building the case for more internal communications and a more formal process surrounding internal communications within my organization. This is a great overview and refresher and has definitely been helpful. Thanks Lee and Forward!
Darren Rowse of ProBlogger posted an excellent A-Z Guide to Professional Blogging post at the end of June that I just stumbled upon. This is an excellent compilation of all tools used for blogging. It includes blogging software platforms, add-ons for blogs, blog search engines, advertising programs for blogs, RSS Feed readers, photo archives and everything else people use to blog and make business blogs a success.
Whether you are new to business blogging or not, take the time to explore this. You are sure to find something new and fun to help develop your blog.