“Like beauty, the definition of ‘public relations’ is in the eye of the beholder,” says Mr. Corbett, the 2012 chairman and chief executive of the PRSA.
And what could be more ironic than the PRSA's attempt to crowdsource a 'new definition' of PR to suit the age of social media? I'll let Mr. Corbett spin his own story:
“We tried to engage everyone who would be engaged, and it generated a tremendous amount of dialog,” he said, adding: “Maybe the best way to capture it is to say it was a very transparent and open process. It was basically an exercise in making sausage.”
Maybe, Mr. Corbett, just maybe. Which is surely why the three finalists for the definition are based on minute iterations of the exact same sentiment:
- “Public relations is the management function of researching, communicating and collaborating with publics to build mutually beneficial relationships.”
- “Public relations is a strategic communication process that builds mutually beneficial relationships between organizations and their publics.”
- “Public relations is the strategic process of engagement between organizations and publics to achieve mutual understanding and realize goals.”