Uber’s Very Bad Horrible String of Events

Uber is en route to a massive IPO. As the company gets closer to its destination, its once 5-star rating is rapidly diminishing. As a result, the company’s president, Jeff Jones, opened the Uber door and jumped out after only six months on the job. The list of recent offenses, not all incidents since its launch, …

The end of the line for reputation

Reputation has long been a word that is closely linked to both PR and communication activity. Many industry definitions have been focused on protecting and enhancing reputation. But is that really where we should be and in 2017 what is the essence of communication? I was talking to a group of public sector communicators on …

The power of positive messaging

Being a fat flubberwubber I’ve never been good at balls games, particularly squash and tennis. I’m always the player puffing sweatily up and down, frantically trying to field balls sent every which way by my smug opponent nonchalantly controlling the game from the centre of the court.  And of course I always lose. I recently …

Communication and media response to the Westminster attack

Best practice communication was critical to allaying fear in the immediate response to the Westminster attacks but sensationalist media coverage needs to be challenged. Public relations students at Newcastle University are studying crisis communications this semester. They’ve had several sessions of theory. It’s my turn on Friday to share a real life case study. In …

Should you stop advertising on Google?

Dozens of brands and leading advertisers have pulled their advertising from Google in an argument about how the search engine giant monitors its own systems. The major move away from Google follows an investigation by The Times newspaper which has revealed significant amounts of advertising from major global brands appearing on YouTube videos, amongst other …

The post-truth world, the public sphere and public relations

Later this month I’ll be taking part in the European Communications Convention in Munich.  The somewhat ambiguous title for this gathering is ‘You (won’t) get far by lying’, and delegates from all over Europe will be discussing topics including fake news, cyber-criminality and ethical challenges At the heart of all these questions is the nature …

In 2017 we simply shouldn’t need to discuss the gender pay gap

By Mary Whenman, President, Women in PR Two years ago, in 2015 McKinsey proved the economic case for diversity by showing that companies with more women at the top, outperform others by 15%. Other research conducted by EY with the Peterson Institute for International Economics recently found that companies with at least 30% female leaders …

Top 5 CEO public affairs mistakes

Leaders do not often suffer from a lack of self-confidence. Important in some leadership settings, that same trait can often lead to political and public affairs mistakes. Even very recent history is littered with the mistakes made by leaders whether that is off-the-cuff comments, arrogance in the face of political or media scrutiny, a failure …

Are brands inherently political?

Last week, Mark Zuckerberg published his ‘Building Global Community’ open letter – or, as the BBC called it – his “manifesto to re-boot globalisation”. At first glance, it may seem hypocritical for the man who says he isn’t interested in being a politician to jump feet first into one of the biggest political issues out …