This week I am focusing on corporate public relations, focusing primarily on ethics and how they operate within the corporate sector.
Corporate public relations principles apply to organisations regardless of their size or purpose. While corporate and financial public relations practitioners share comparable characteristics to more generic public relations roles, they do offer more specialised features, such as the legal disclosure of information to the ASX. Corporate public relations is comprised of four main principles;
These principles enable corporate public relations to communicate and operate affectively and ethically within each organisation.
Effective corporate public relations strategies ensure that a company or organisation is able to adequately communicate financial and corporate information to a diverse range of publics (Johnston, 2014). It is also a contributing factor towards a company’s reputation. Corporate public relations also relates to non-for-profit organisations, including, hospitals, charities and community organisations that rely on financial support from other businesses, in order to provide a high quality of service to its publics.
Richard Branson, the founder of the multi-million dollar airplane company, Virgin, exemplifies the importance of corporate public relations, to the success of organisations.
“The head of PR is perhaps one of the most important people in a company and a good chairman will have them by their side. They are critical for managing the brand and save millions in advertising. People talking about your company is much more important than anything.” (Comcowich, 2015).
Branson has a reputation for being the master of Public Relations and his successes are largely to do with his focus on strengthening his companies prosperity.
Corporate and financial public relations plays an imperative role in ensuring the ethical functioning of corporate firms. Financial public relations refers to a range of communication strategies and activities that are undertaken by financial entities. It is important for corporate public relations practitioners to build investor confidence and sustainable relationships within the financial community, to ensure that their publics are aware and have confidence in the companies corporate reputation. If a company has a good reputation, it will attract investors and other companies who are looking to integrate.
These corporate and financial public relations functions, include, analysis and reporting, corporate sponsorship, financial media relations, institutional investors, public affairs and retail shareholder relations. Shareholders and investors in companies expect to see financial returns on their investments.
Corporate communication is extremely important as its role is to maintain favourable reputations and relationships with the stakeholders, in which an organisations relies on for financial support.
Corporate public relations main role is to acknowledge and address the interests of the whole organisation. Their role is to attend to the corporate culture, corporate social responsiveness, the reputation of the organisation, maintaining a positive corporate identity, communicating with the key decision makers of the company and managing positive attitude towards stakeholder engagement. Research, respect and responsibility are key characteristics that ensure corporate communication is functioning effectively within an organisation. Research is an essential tool, as it provides practitioners with the opportunity to gain knowledge about what factors may influence a company’s reputation and it’s share price. Respect in the corporate sector is important as it fosters a positive and strong relationship with organisations stakeholders. Finally responsibility refers to the responsibilities a corporation has to provide its publics, both internal and external.
The key messages from this weeks reading demonstrated the importance of in house corporate public relations and explained the way in which it functions within an organisation. The chapter also explained how financial public relations operates and the importance of maintaining a strong corporate relations body within an organisation, that is able to provide stakeholders and public with new information.
The readings made me think more about public relations theory and practice, as I had never really thought about the financial or corporate aspects of the sector. I always assumed it focused primarily on communicating to publics and stakeholders, through language and creative campaigns.
J. Johnston, M. Sheehan, 2014. Theory and Practice Public Relations. NSW, Australia.
W. Comcowich. Public Relations Lessons from Richard Branson, the PR Master. 2015.Public Relations Lessons from Richard Branson, the PR Master. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.cyberalert.com/blog/index.php/public-relations-lessons-from-richard-branson-the-pr-master/. [Accessed 27 October 2015].