The secret of success is a 'bedrock of strong foundations' - without it, firms will fail

Robin Gordon-Farleigh, founding partner of new UAE start-up Manara Global, says without a strong communication infrastructure in place, PR shops struggle to function.

Robin Gordon-Farleigh is the founding partner of new UAE-start-up Manara Global
Robin Gordon-Farleigh is the founding partner of new UAE-start-up Manara Global

Communications infrastructure may not be the most exciting topic, it may not be dinner party discussion, well for me it might be, but not everyone.  

However, I have seen countless times, organisations struggle because their foundations are not strong and systems not clearly understood by those using them. Without strong communication infrastructure in place, without the foundations in place, ‘there can be no fashion’. This is relevant in both the Government and the corporate world.

Often overlooked, but too often the case that communication departments struggle to be as effective as they could be all because the infrastructure is not well designed and/or has not evolved over time.

From my time in the UK Government, I oversaw the UK Grid for six years – the strategic communications tool that both scheduled all of the government business as well as acting as an early radar risk identification for an external business that may warrant a response by Government.  

This system first introduced in 1997 and still running to this current day functioned in part to having the right infrastructure in place. This infrastructure spread out across 25 ministries and over 350 executive agencies and non-departmental public bodies.

I could only lead this process due to having the right infrastructure in place, streamlined systems in place and a clear understanding by all the key internal stakeholders. It delivered communications discipline around the handling and timing, message discipline, drove priority to the on narrative business, and ultimately presented competent government driving momentum and towards a clear sense of purpose.

From this experience, therefore, I have both witnessed the value and benefits of having the right and strong infrastructure in place. I am an advocate for it – a communications infrastructure engineer if you like.

For organisations to be highly effective, they will have in place the right infrastructure to support the core business, and therefore the same infrastructure approach but tailored to communications should be there too.


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