What do you think of if you think about PR and communication people? If you are outside the industry would you have a different reference point? If you have never met anyone who works in the business who would come to mind?
These are interesting questions to consider and came from the #commschat discussion on Twitter at 8pm last night. It was a consideration of fictional representations of PR and comms people in TV and films. It may sound a bit frivolous but there is a serious point to all this.
If you are a young person considering your future career and your only reference point for PR is the TV show Absolutely Fabulous would it cloud your views? I am sure I would have avoided a move to PR if I had thought that was what my life may entail.
There is the main problem. PR and communication isn’t a job that people just do in programmes. Unless it is a fundamental element of the character they will never have a PR person in Eastenders or Coronation Street. So it is the responsibility of all communication and PR professionals to ensure this situation changes.
We have to talk about what we do in a positive way and to be proud of the achievements and the contribution we make to the economy. We have to encourage the next generation to consider it as a career. We have to push for honest reflections of the role on TV.
It is a significant challenge but we deal with more difficult problems every day at work so I know we can make it happen.