EDITORIAL: Reader's call for greater diversity has to be championed by our magazine and industry

Pat Wheeler's "Letter to the Editor" (right) sends a clear and important message to the entire PR industry, and in particular to this magazine that covers it. Her words take on added significance, appearing as they do in our Salary Survey issue, which proves yet again that the profession still has a long way to go before it can claim to be truly diverse.

Pat Wheeler's "Letter to the Editor" (right) sends a clear and important message to the entire PR industry, and in particular to this magazine that covers it. Her words take on added significance, appearing as they do in our Salary Survey issue, which proves yet again that the profession still has a long way to go before it can claim to be truly diverse.

We are proud of our editorial content, the quality of our Awards judges, and our thought leaders who contribute regularly to the magazine. But that does not mean we are complacent. PRWeek's ongoing challenge is to reflect the true breadth and depth of the profession, and we need constant input from readers to ensure that we achieve that. Wheeler shared her letter with some of her contacts, several of whom offered suggestions for increasing diversity in our coverage. In fact, the level of input we got suggests that there is an untapped well of people out there who want to see this issue advanced, but have few opportunities to share their ideas. This kind of collaboration on a key issue is a crucial step to finding tangible solutions. The PR industry as a whole must continue this dialogue. It goes far beyond competitive hiring, and is instead one of those global issues that demands cooperation. The push for representative employee populations is happening across many professions, including journalism, medicine, education, and science, just to name a few. The profession must collaboratively and aggressively demonstrate the creative and intellectual challenges to be found in a PR career. In doing so, it will continue to attract the best candidates from all walks of life. I hope that readers will continue to pursue this discussion with PRWeek as well. PR pros work better by being home more Judith Muhlberg told our reporter last week, "You're the CEO of your life," explaining her decision to step down as Boeing's SVP of communications. Muhlberg wants to devote more time to her family, especially as her daughter begins to prepare for college. "I'm making an executive decision," she said. Others in the past year have taken the same route out of high-profile jobs, including Presidential advisers Karen Hughes and Mary Matalin. PRWeek's annual Salary Survey offers a glimmer of the notion that attaining a work/life balance is a priority for many people working today. The average hours spent at work each week for those in PR firms was 46 this year, down from 47.78 in 2002. Corporate communicators are working about the same number of hours (at 48.68 a week), but nonprofits also seem to be taking it a little easier, working an average of 44.9 hours a week (compared to 45.6 last year). These changes may seem relatively insignificant, but in an environment where teams are expected to do more with fewer resources, it may be a credible trend. We live in uncertain times. Communications professionals have a responsibility to their companies, stakeholders, and clients. Companies also have a responsibility to their employees to ensure they maintain equilibrium at home - and their peace of mind.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register
Already registered?
Sign in

Would you like to post a comment?

Please Sign in or register.