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Like father, like daughter?

10 Nov

Our industry is barely a century old, and it’s still not quite a full profession. So it’s not surprising that there are so few British PR dynasties.

I’ve worked with Kevin Traverse-Healy FCIPR whose father Tim is a distinguished practitioner and academic. I remember Chris Corfield (when at A Plus Group) telling me his father had been in PR. Crispin Manners also followed in his father Norman’s footsteps (see the note to editors at the end of this news release).

Have I missed any obvious dynastic examples? Perhaps here’s one for the future…

One of our second year students is the daughter of CIPR president Tony Bradley’s business partner (in Bradley O’Mahoney). She possibly has greater opportunities than her father (since the public relations business is now so much larger), but she will probably face more competition at every stage of her career.

Finding me

7 Jul

Perhaps I’m odd. I prefer obscurity to celebrity. I enjoy the anonymity of cities and the solitude of country walks. Yet I maintain my membership of the CIPR because I think it’s an important statement, and because it means my contact details are available to all other members. And this blog is in part about Google juice (it brings me in at fourth place in a global search on my name).

I had thought this might be enough to help an amateur sleuth find me (there’s even a photo on this screen to help with identification). So it’s worth reporting that a letter I sent to PR Week elicited an invitation to a reunion from the consultancy that gave me my first job in PR (they’ve since gone through more name changes than me).

Logic tells us to move beyond our obsession with print publications; yet emotion keeps drawing people back to the power of print. (Ironically, the gist of my letter was to treat bloggers as people, not as media.)

Some speech

2 Dec

I’ve been teaching some classes on speech writing recently, so I paid attention to an address given at a graduation ceremony at this university today.

Jane Tomlinson has a story to tell. Since being diagnosed with terminal cancer, she has pushed herself to ever greater feats of physical endurance – and raised large sums of money for good causes. Last year she completed the Ironman triathlon in Florida, with the help of my colleague Ryan Bowd.

She received an honorary degree and addressed our graduands. Her speech began and ended with them. Their achievements, their aspirations, their sense of belonging to a community, their lives ahead of them. Only then did she talk about her personal struggles and achievements. It was very humbling.

‘Never give up’

20 Apr

Jeremy Pepper has interviewed PR grandee Peter Gummer (Lord Chadlington). In summary, his advice is ‘never give up’.

How to be Max

13 Dec

According to the interview in today’s Media Guardian, you need media skills. Max Clifford is still a member of the NUJ, and here’s his proud claim:

If you look back over the past two decades, I have broken more major stories than any journalist in Britain.

He’s not unsupportive of PR degrees, though you need experience too:

My small team of nine have all taken degrees, but then it requires three or four years’ experience until they become PR workers, because theory is one thing, but practice is a million miles away.