Daney Parker, Editor, PRmoment.com
How many of your new year resolutions have already fallen by the wayside? Still doing Veganuary for example? I, for one, have already failed at that one. We asked around the PR world for resolutions that are worth making and sticking to so that 2022 stands out for all the right reasons.
Focus on your people
Emma Evans, director at PR agency Teamspirit: “In danger of being binned as woke buzzwords, employee empowerment has entered the public conscience, with the pandemic elevating it further through 2021. Companies, including those in the PR sector, have a golden opportunity to show their employees - preferably through meaningful, responsive actions - how much they value them and their commitment through 2022. And it is something our sector must focus on through the year - our people are our most powerful tool.
“Tuning in, leaning in and listening is the place to start. The third part, listening, is the crucial part. A recent survey from insurer MetLife, highlighted that almost three quarters - 72% - of employers and 62% of employees agree the pandemic has changed their relationship. So, recognise the change, listen to the new demands and expectations, and then show empathy by acting!”
Admit to mistakes
Adam Smith, managing director at Teamspirit: “We have to talk about our mistakes more. All of them. All the time. I make mistakes - some are bigger than others, but what makes them important is what I can learn from them.
“If we never recognise something as a mistake or a failure then we can’t make change or do things better next time. We live in a culture where it sometimes feels easier to sweep mistakes under the carpet, but what if we faced up to them and had a word with ourselves, and others, about what we can learn?
“And this is especially true for us heading up teams. It helps everyone around us to know that no one, regardless of experience or seniority, is immune from making mistakes. So my resolution for 2022 is to talk more about the mistakes I make and what I learnt from them.”
Stick to resolutions this year!
Simon Kinnear, account director at PR agency Nielsen McAllister: “I tend to treat resolutions in much the same way that Douglas Adams famously viewed deadlines: ‘I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by’. Not that this prevents me from starting each new year with good intentions! For 2022, alongside some old favourites (exercise; spend more quality time with the family) I’m dedicated to making the most of my new role at Nielsen McAllister.”
Create value for clients
Simon Kinnear: “My main resolution this year is to focus on creating value for clients. I think, historically, too much PR has been driven by KPIs. As the name implies, these merely answer the question: “have we delivered the work?” Instead, I want to be able to answer, meaningfully, “What has our work achieved?” This will mean revisiting the entire PR lifecycle, from strategic planning all the way through to measurement and evaluation. In other words, for someone notorious for not sticking to resolutions, I’m committing publicly to my most ambitious resolution yet.”
Kellie Sadler, account manager at agency Neo PR: “I’m a fan of making realistic resolutions for the new year, and I think realistic is the key word here. Treating the resolution as a goal over the next 365 days, whether it is professional or personal, allows you to work towards something long-term. Some of my resolutions for 2022 are to progress in my current job role as a PR account manager, and to book at least three holidays (Covid-19 really put a halt to travelling and I have some serious making up to do!).”
Kellie Sadler: “For all PRs, I think a worthy resolution to make to yourself is to always keep learning, and to remain agile. Times are changing, every market is digitally transforming, and as the people who communicate key messages, we need to be behind every trend there is. This means that we’ll be picking up new skills, training on innovative software and learning how to work against new challenges - all which we must be open in doing.”
Be more productive
Charlie Kitcat, graduate trainee, brand and consumer at PR agency FleishmanHillard: “This year, I’ve resolved (like every year) to be better. Sure, that might be the most vague resolution possible, but it means upgrading efficiency, focus and proactivity. I’d also like to write a few more thought leadership pieces, particularly for the FH sports team. So far, just a few days in, it’s going well. Aside from the exercise element of course - managed to pull my hamstring on NYE. Not the best start…”
Get back to the office
Charlie Kitcat: “I’m guilty of the WFH lie-in, but once we can head back to the office, I’d love to see more desks filled. The office seems the best place to bounce questions and ideas back and forth with ease.”
Let us hope many of us succeed in following the resolutions above, especially the one about taking more holidays. Although it is always fiendishly difficult to stick to good intentions, as the expression goes: “A new year's resolution is something that goes in one year and out the other."
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