“The ART of Responsible Communication II”

This last blog post for my strategic planning class focuses on Part II and III of David Remund’s “The ART of Responsible Communication.” Two key points he focused on was whether “any publicity is good publicity” and how to communicate with the five different stakeholder groups he mentions.

In chapter 7 Remund states, “The old adage asserts that any publicity is good publicity. Nothing could be further from the truth” (Remund 66). At first I completely agreed. If you receive positive media coverage, it can have a positive impact on your organization, and vise versa. Client loyalty is driven by positive results and your client’s success is a result of a positive image in the media. This is often achieved by creating strong and positive relationships with those involved in media. The media can easily be either your friend and alliance, or your enemy and destroyer; the key is to avoid the latter.

Although I more often than not see positive publicity impact an organization in a positive way, and negative publicity do the opposite, this is not always true. In a Stanford business study on books and publicity, it was found that books by relatively unknown authors had increasing sales by a significant 45% in response to its negative publicity. In general, negative publicity can draw attention to products that otherwise would have gone unnoted and increase its sales simply simply because it stimulates product awareness. It is true that “in the end, not all news coverage is equal” (Remund 66), however there are definitely exceptions to this rule in either direction.

On a different note, I learned some additional tips from Part II about communicating with different stakeholder groups. It was an interesting section to read, considering that in school and after graduation we will be working with a variety of different people. I found this section of the book especially interesting because it is applicable to my present and future life. Dr. Remund discusses how being a responsible communicator and leader can also mean putting other people in the position to lead. “Your role, as a leader and a responsible communicator, is to empower others to help lead, regardless of their rank and title” (Remund 38).

There are five different stakeholder groups discussed in “The ART of Responsible Communication” including: managers and supervisors, employees and contractors, investors and regulators, editors and reporters, and customers and prospects. Each group requires different expectations and actions to succeed. In creating a dynamic environment where everyone is involved, everyone is offered a chance to be a leader. I learned that in order to achieve this dynamic, one must make an effort to actively engage with a variety of stakeholders, or as Remund puts it, “contributing valuable insight as appropriate,” in order to learn and understand what is needed in order for them to perform their jobs exceptionally. Whether it’s holding people accountable, interaction, updates, planning, or exchanging of information, each stakeholder group will require something different to succeed.

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