Tag Archives: management

Snap Them Out of It

Beach Ball in the AirMomentum, or what some think of as Newton’s First Law of Motion, “Every body remains in a state of rest or uniform motion (constant velocity) unless it is acted upon by an external unbalanced force,” not only applies to “every body” in motion but also to everybody.

Success begets success – it’s that x factor that helps makes great salesmen phenomenal and bad ones lousy.

It’s also the factor that makes the downer client or co-worker the downer on all occasions.  They start their day off badly and by 10a are dragging everyone else down.

The opposite is also true, so all is not lost.  There’s always (hopefully) one person in an office that can crack a joke at the worst situation and provide the best way out of the mess.  We could all use more of them. Continue reading

Exec Chat: John Bliss, Founder of BlissPR

Recently, I had the distinct pleasure of meeting over breakfast with someone I have great respect for in the public relations field—John Bliss, the now semi-retired founding principal of BlissPR. I had been wanting to meet John for quite some time, having met several BlissPR employees, including his daughter (and one of three managing directors at the agency), Elizabeth, among others. I had always been struck by just how nice everyone from BlissPR seemed to be, which has been backed by the company being named one of the top-30 PR agencies to work for in the U.S. by The Holmes Report.

John fully lived up to his billing and was quite generous with his time and insight. Over breakfast at the Princeton Club (his alma mater), we discussed numerous topics affecting the public relations industry, including what BlissPR execs look for in new hires, the openness BlissPR has with its employees regarding the company’s financial standing and how technology and social media have impacted his business, which primarily works with clients in the B2B space.

Below are a few of John’s thoughts. Enjoy! Continue reading

Walk The Line

Scale of justice, close-upA few weeks ago, I discussed some of the ongoing debate and insight within the PR profession about demonstrating our value among C-level executives. I wanted to dig into that subject a little further (it’s a personal interest of mine) with some fascinating research I found in MIT’s Sloan Management Review.

In an article published in the Summer 2010 issue, Larry Styble and Maryanne Peabody, co-founders of Boston-based management firm Stybel Peabody Lincolnshire, address which types of employees and executives CEOs gravitate toward.

The authors’ basic point is that for many successful CEOs, who they align themselves with within their executive suite often comes down to assets and liabilities. That’s right; in a way, we can boil down the value of any company’s executives to whether they see the world as full of opportunities (asset enhancement) or full of threats (liabilities reduction). Continue reading

The Secret Worries of a PR Firm Boss

Disagreement in OfficeMel Brooks once famously observed that “it’s good to be the king.” It’s probably also pleasant to be Bill Gates or Michael Arrington. I’d even guess that some folks think it’s pretty good to be me.

What is it like to have responsibility for running a PR firm?  You might be able to imagine the upside, but there are struggles too.  Here are some of the pain points — and some of the issues that folks like me think about on a daily basis: Continue reading

Manager vs Leader: Are You A Trusted Advisor?

Portrait of a businessman standing with his four colleagues in opposite directionsBarely a year into my journey as a small business owner, I’m learning valuable skills and lessons that enable me to do my job better. Now, I’m not talking about building media lists or drafting messaging documents, but what it means to be a trusted advisor, someone who has the ear of a client, offering counsel to help their business grow.

I’m learning that to be an advisor I need to focus on the client’s needs and not my own; to help them grow will help me grow. I’m learning that I can’t rest on what’s “tried and true” all the time and that I need to undergo constant reinvention; to find new ways to service my client. Most importantly, I’m learning to place the highest value on maintaining the relationship; to prove to my clients that I am here for the long haul, not just for the length of the immediate contract. Continue reading

Know Thy Audience

A woman giving a speech in front of an audienceStop me if you have heard this one before from a PR/communications colleague: “Our CEO/Board of Directors (BOD) really wants this hit/newsletter/sandwich/microsite/etc.”

Yeah, we’ve all heard this phrase from some of our PR and marketing peeps, and while that approach to external communications may have worked just splendidly in 1995, heading into 2010, this notion of “we must appease our CEO/BODs first!” is a recipe for a PR/marketing plan disaster, if you ask me. This thought’s been rocking through my mind for a few days now, so I’m just going to come out and say it: Continue reading