PR must assert itself as a management discipline, says #FuturePRoof volume two

PR professionals must work harder to assert public relations as a management discipline, demonstrating its value to organisational success and its right to a seat at the top table.

This is one of the key points in the second volume of #FuturePRoof, a collection of 39 essays from various prominent PR figures.

It is again edited by PR professional Sarah Hall, who operates as Sarah Hall Consulting, after the project was launched last year with support from the PRCA and ICCO.

She said: "Demand shows professionals want to close their competency gaps in order to provide strategic advice at management level. What's more, the public relations industry is waking up to the fact that if we are truly guiding organisational strategy, it is common sense that other disciplines answer to us within the corporate hierarchy. I expect this narrative to get louder and louder."

In the book, Ketchum partner and chief engagement officer Stephen Waddington argues that PR can only "realise its full potential as a management discipline" when it works more closely with the academic community, in particular through the industry giving academics greater profile and improving alumni networks for universities with PR courses.

"Without the historical perspective and insight provided by academics, practitioners lack rigour and are limited to trading in simple crafts and tactics," he writes.

Richard Houghton however argues that PR is already recognised as a management discipline, and says that the CIPR's drive to have the sector recognised as a provision should not be abandoned, although he does suggest it be merged with the PRCA.

#FuturePRoof is available online.

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