Definition of Public Relations by Rex Harlow, who founded what eventually became the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA):
Public relations is a distinctive management function which helps establish and maintain mutual lines of communication, understanding, acceptance, and cooperation between an organization and its publics; involves the management of problems or issues; helps management keep informed on and responsive to public opinion; defines and emphasizes the responsiblity of management to serve the public interest; helps management keep abreast of and effectively utilize change, serving as an early warning system to help anticipate trends; and uses reseasrch and sound ethical communication techniques as its principal tools.
Public Relations as a Process: RACE acronym
- Reaserch. What is the problem or situation?
- Action. What is going to be done about it?
- Communication. How will the public be told?
- Evaluatoin. Was the audience reached and what was the effect?
Five Essential Abilities of a Public Relations Professional:
- Writing skill. The ability to put information and ideas onto paper clearly and concisely is essential.
- Research ability. Arguments for cuases must have factual support instead of generalities.
- Planning expertise. A public relations program invovles a number of communication tools and activities that must be carefully planned and coordinated.
- Problem-solving ability. Innovative ideas and fresh approaches are needed to solve complex problems or to make a public relations program unique and memorable.
- Business/economic competence.
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