“As a profession public relations gets the respect it deserves,” said NO ONE EVER among the men and women who actually earn their living this way. In fact, the term PR is often seen as synomous with cover up or fluffy or even insubstantial! Having been a professional communicator for more than 20 years, I have to admit this still riles me.
That’s why I applaud yesterday’s announcement that the Canadian Public Relations Society (CPRS) is launching a new framework that champions high ethical standards for the profession. They did their homework. There was a survey (which I participated in), and many consultations involving hundreds of PR pros held coast to coast over a year.
Their resulting framework includes a new vision and mission and focusses on four strategic goals:
- Community – Members are part of a national community with full access to services and benefits regardless of where they live.
- Collaboration – Members have direct access to share knowledge with colleagues and professionals. They have opportunities to engage with thought leaders and discuss trends in the industry.
- Careers – Support for members at every stage of their career.
- Conscience – Members are ethical professionals who adhere to and uphold a code of standards.
I have known about the CPRS since 1989 and have attended many of their Ottawa events over the years. (I’ve even spoken at one or two). I have a lot of respect for the organization and might have become a member myself, if my career hadn’t taken me abroad, making IABC my choice of professional association.
I welcome this renewed focus on professional ethics. Heavens knows, now more than ever, we certainly need to drive home high standards.