Running the country appears to be no easy thing if you are looking at the current state of politics and the Prime Minister. It also seems to be the case if anyone has been watching the Channel 4 programme Make Me Prime Minister which is on Tuesday nights. Just two weeks in and there has been a lack of policies, lots of poor publicity stunts and some very dubious media handling.
It is the roll of effective communication that has been the most obvious element of the tasks those taking part have been involved in. There is the usual view that doing PR and media management is an easy task, which judging from the attempts made so far it absolutely is not. Arguments with journalists, off the cuff remarks and rambling discussions have all happened and we are only two episodes in.
As a professional communicator, you can expect that I would focus on the importance of the role it plays in life and I hope that others may be seeing the importance of effective communication. This is not about ‘spin’ or manipulation but about making sure people understand the details of what is being talked about. It is explaining what it means, what they need to do and what impact things will have, as well as the all-important why.
The recent survey from the PRCA shows that CEOs are starting to realise that communication is not just about tactical delivery but about strategic advice. In the post-pandemic world of chaos effective communication is a way to try and help people make sense of what is happening around them. It is a way that businesses keep in touch with the mood around them and can help support in finding new ways of working.
If I was ever thinking about going into politics this programme and the state of what is happening in the UK government and around the world would make me think again. I am sure others may feel the same which is a shame as it is clear a new style of politics and political leader is what is needed.
If you haven’t seen the programme, check it out or look for the edition next Tuesday when they are going to be faced with a crisis to manage. Having worked in the past on crisis simulations and in major emergencies I feel I know the way this will go. They will over-react, make poor judgements and potentially commit scare resources too soon. During a crisis decisions need to be made based on what is going to bring the best outcome for people not for the individual making the decision. Given the nature of the programme this will not happen as those taking part are fighting for their survival in the process.
I know I will sit and be shouting at the TV while I watch next week’s episode.