Published on September 10, 2007
India’s first corporate PR ezine VOL 1 Issue 3 May 06 Published by Prime Point Foundation and Chennai PR Club PR-e-FACE: “Moving towards Accreditation… ” The PR-e-Sense has received Accreditation to this profession tremendous response from becomes mandatory. communication professionals around the globe. Going forward, PR-e-Sense Not withstanding any misconceptions would take a theme-based approach around Accreditation programme, with the content tailored to match the Accreditation benchmarks the theme. With Public Relations Council of profession and improves the credibility India (PRCI) forming a subcommittee of the professionals. Accreditation to study the modalities of 'PR provides standards against which a Accreditation' in India, this issue would professional is assessed. focus on this theme. These programmes advance the Anyone working in today’s profession by identifying those who marketplace has an Accreditation after have demonstrated knowledge, his or her name to prove his/her experience and professional judgment professional standards. Today, PR in the field of communications/public (Public Relations) is seen by most as a relations. legitimate industry. Many Indian universities have communications In a global scale, Nigeria has department offering degrees. Also, PR implemented its Nigerian PR Act and practitioners have branched out from Kenya too. PRSA, CIPR, PRISA, IPRS simple publicity to a wide variety of and many other organisations accredit communication and marketing related PR professionals through their activities both internally and programmes. It is good time that the externally. Indian subcontinent has joined the PR fraternity to raise the industry In an era of globalization, where standards. communication is the hot seat, an PR-e-CISE • Inside this ezine: Mr Eric Bergman, Dr.Jeff Hoyer, and Mr Richard Gaunt speak on • An exclusive interview with Mr Accreditation • Colin Farrington, Director General Global Accreditation Institutions • of CIPR, London PRCI’s plans on Accreditation • • Exclusive interview with Ms PR Events in India and abroad • Bhavani, President, Institute of PR Extract of group discussions of Singapore • And more …
2 PR-eXCLUSIVE - Accreditation “benchmarks” the profession Chartered Institute of Public Relations advantageous position over the (CIPR), www.cipr.co.uk based at others who are not accredited? London is the largest public A: ‘Public Relations’ is not really a relations profession that can successfully be institute in regulated by laws. It is too diverse and Europe, with too dynamic. Public Relations more than 8000 practitioners must reflect the culture members. and economy in which they work. CIPR supports However it is critical that the users of training and public relations have a nationally development of accepted benchmark so that they use its members, only qualified people and do not waste produces policy money on the unqualified. guidelines for PR profession to bring Accreditation, whether it takes the out the best practices. It also form of examinations or recognition of publishes books and periodicals on PR years of experience, is an essential CIPR is dedicated for raising standards tool to show the ‘clear water’ between of the PR industry, by enforcing code the qualified and the unqualified. of conduct for their members to operate ethically with integrity and Q:. In a developing country like transparency. India, how the Accreditation would help to improve the quality Mr Colin Farrington, Director of PR profession to International General of CIPR in an exclusive standards. interview to K. Srinivasan, Chief Editor of PR-e-Sense emphasizes the need A: Accreditation is best done to for Accreditation to raise the national standards by national professional standards of associations. But by working and communication profession in India. Mr benchmarking with internationally Colin, a well-known PR professional of recognized bodies such as the CIPR UK, was inducted into UK PR week’s (see www.cipr.co.uk) in the UK all “‘Hall of Fame 2005” for his standards can be raised. contribution to the PR profession. As Principal Advisor to Institute’s Council, Q: What is your fraternal message he is responsible for positioning CIPR to Indian PR professionals? as one of the leading PR organizations in the world. A: I had the privilege of visiting Delhi Excerpts from his interview: in November 2005 for the conference of the Indian public relations Q: What are the advantages of association. I made many friends there Accreditation to the PR and understood the great strides that professionals? Since it is a are being made in the Indian economy voluntary scheme, how the and in the professionalisation of accredited PR professionals are in services such as public relations. I hope that those strides can be maintained and that we can continue to work together productively.
3 PR-eXCLUSIVE - Accreditation is a symbol of professionalism The Institute of Public Relations of competence. This is especially Singapore (IPRS), established in important for hires at key strategic 1970 as a non-profit organisation, is management level. the only accrediting body for public relations In the Singapore’s context, having practitioners. evaluated and compared the In an exclusive Accreditation schemes of matured interview to Ms markets such as the USA, UK, Meera of Australia and Canada, we felt that it is PR-e-sense, Ms important to focus our resources on Bhavani, getting the professionals accredited President, IPRS before considering Accreditation for PR explained as to agencies. how employers would get better Q. In a developing country like professional India, how the Accreditation proficiency when would help to improve the quality they hire Accredited Professionals. Ms of PR profession to International Bhavani is also the Director of standards. Corporate Communication Department in Singapore Government A. In our experience, we have studied (www.mica.gov.sg ). Excerpts from similar programmes in United her interview Kingdom, Australia, Canada and the United States before drawing up an Accreditation scheme that suits the Q. What are the advantages of Singapore context. We believe that as Accreditation to the PR more of our PR practitioners get professionals? accredited, it would invariably help raise the level of professionalism to A. An Accredited PR Professional has compete in the international arena. demonstrated broad knowledge, With the tremendous growth in the experience and professional judgment Indian economy, India should join the in the field. The main objective of an ranks of other countries and adopt the Accreditation programme is to provide Accreditation scheme. professional recognition and formal certification to prominent and Q. What is your fraternal message experienced PR professionals. This to Indian PR professionals? means that employers can be assured of a certain degree of professional A. The introduction and acceptance of proficiency in hiring such PR an Accreditation scheme is no doubt a professionals. These individuals would long and tedious one. I believe that as have been accessed by independent Asia becomes an economic hub, the panels made up of fellow eminent demand for certified PR professionals industry practitioners before being would make it viable for India to push awarded with the accredited status. forth with this scheme Website : http://www.iprs.org.sg/ The Accredited status would become a symbol of professionalism and
4 PReSTIGE - Accreditation establishes credibility Eric Bergman, ABC, APR, MC, Chair, IABC International Accreditation Council email@example.com My name is Eric Bergman. I am based in Toronto, Canada, and currently chair of the international Accreditation council of the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC). The international my experience, the knowledge and Accreditation council is responsible for experience of strategic communicators the ongoing development and can be equal with that of PR marketing of IABC's accredited professionals in more developed parts business communicator (ABC) of the world. In other words, designation. The ABC is the only Accreditation enables them to validate internationally consistent Accreditation their perspective to themselves and process in public relations and the world at large. organizational communications. ABCs can be found on every continent Second, it enables PR professionals to worldwide (except Antarctica). establish credibility within their own country. They can say that they meet http://www.iabc.com/ an international standard, which validates their work and their role as a I believe the Accreditation of public true professional. relations professionals, particularly in developing countries like India, is I would be delighted to have the extremely important. opportunity to assist you with the development of Accreditation in your First and foremost, a peer review country. I am accredited by IABC and process will enable PR professionals in the Canadian Public Relations Society. India to ensure that their work meets As such, I can bring a broad a consistent international standard. perspective to the issues you face. The nation may be developing but, in
5 PReSTIGE - Accreditation is recognition of “standards” Jeff Hoyer, Ph.D. Associate Professor, UTM PR Sequence Director firstname.lastname@example.org I've been a PR professional and now Accreditation from a reputable group for the past seven years have been an like PRSA provides testing over a academic. I'm working toward taking quot;body of knowledge.quot; It represents the exam and here is why. Also, there competency over information is an Accreditation for the PR programs acknowledged by professionals as academically at being important for success within the the colleges profession. It is recognized by and colleagues and industry as a universities. quot;standard” that represents excellence Again, we are and competence. The procedure is set exploring that forth by PRSA and can be found at for our program www.prsa.org. As far as I know the here. I think test is the same for persons just both are good becoming involved in the field and because: persons who have been in it for years...in other words, I don't think you can be quot;grand fatheredquot; into it. PReSTIGE - Accreditation shields “good professionals” Mr Richard Gaunt, Chief Executive, BenchPoint, London www.benchpoint.com the PR profession was very young, but As a long established PR practitioner in growing very quickly. People came in England, and a member of the UK’s from all sorts of Chartered Institute of Public Relations, backgrounds, I welcome the moves to introduce and had professional Accreditation for Indian different PR practitioners. After all, no standards. The democracy can work where the reality is that channels of communication are those who polluted by corrupt information. performed badly If the UK experience is anything to go or dishonestly by, Accreditation (coupled with were soon out education) is working well. While there of a job. But are many complaints about poor PR, there was a general recognition that, dishonesty and “spin”, the main like other so-called “professions”, we culprits are politicians, and dishonest needed common standards and rules, companies who would never dream of and a means of disassociating using a professional PR person. ourselves from those who brought Overall, there are very few complaints disgrace on the words “Public about the PR profession itself. The relations”. CIPR says it handles only about six Accreditation for Indian PR complaints a year, mainly about professionals will provide an excellent business management issues, for focus for raising standards, improving example contractual disputes, education, and building public payment by results under dispute and recognition and confidence in the PR late payment. profession. But it will take time. So be patient! My perception is that India is very similar to the UK in the 1970’s when
6 PR –e- VIEW – Extract from discussion groups Prpoint Group Rashmi Sreedharan, MA (PR) Student email@example.com When I saw the mails from the prpoint When we search for a college or group members expressing their views school, the first thing we look into is on the “Accreditation of PR”, the first whether the institution is recognized or thought that came in not. The same is the case with each my mind was why the and every profession. As a beginner in people are making this this field I feel that if I have the profession so certificate of Accreditation then the complicated and credibility given to me will be more. bringing in This will even add on my confidence certification. and at the same time give me a sense of responsibility to practice PR in an ethical way because I will have to But as I went researching on this topic answer to an authority above me who to express my views, my has given me this power to practice. mindset gradually changed and I So as a PR student I feel that an realized that “Accreditation of PR” was Accreditation is a necessity. something that should have been implemented long back. Prpoint group - Jagriti Motwani, Associate, Blue Lotus Communications firstname.lastname@example.org Accreditation is required for both the b. For individuals it PR Agency and individuals. That is is important, as it important because will give recognition a. Most of the times, clients and to independent international affiliates first see/ buy associates and also the profile of concerned firm and then to some of us who the individuals associated. are not formally qualified in PR. Prpoint Group G. Uma, PR Manager, ITC Hotel Park Sheraton email@example.com By accepting Accreditation status from Accreditation renewal review. The a recognized organization, a purpose of the continuous review is to Public Relation ensure that the accredited institution professional is continuing to maintain the standards agrees to that Accreditation status stands for. uphold the Accreditation organizations also quality perform periodic quality reviews of standards set themselves to ensure that they are by them. The effectively able to handle the accredited PR professional also agrees requirements of their job. to periodically submitting the
7 PR –e- VIEW – Extract from discussion groups Image Management Group Mr C R Kannan, Chief Communication Officer, SPIC firstname.lastname@example.org The corporates would certainly look at the agency working with like-minded agencies based on who feel the same pain, anguish, certain concern as themselves. Accountability parameters it increases with regulation and becomes considers a practice when it is treated as a important. norm. This sort of Therefore bringing in Accreditation in self-regulation will enable the PR their work ethos would only go to industry itself to size up to a certain embellish their credibility, particularly format, in line with what the when the stakes are high. Nobody corporates would expect them to be.. wants to take chances. PR like It becomes that much simpler and advertising could be governed by a easier for the corporates to choose regulatory body that puts its stamp on from this enhanced format. PR –e- News – PRCI initiates process of Accreditation Public Relations Council of India (PRCI), registered National body of PR / Corpcom professionals of India has initiated the prevailing for Doctors, Chartered process of Accountants, Company Secretaries, Accreditation of PR etc. In other developing and professionals in India. PRCI has set up developed countries, the PR an Expert Committee and Expert Sub professionals get accredited through Committee to study the global the Independent bodies to improve the practices and to give recommendation quality of profession and the market to PRCI for implementation. PRCI is prefers only accredited professionals presently having 11 Chapters in India and shortly opening 9 more chapters. After receiving the Sub Committee Many eminent professionals of India report in June, PRCI, will be able to are associated with PRCI. take it further for implementation. These measures will add value to the Extract from the views expressed by PR profession in India and improve the Mr M B Jayaram, Chairman, National credibility and accountability. Few of Governing Council of PRCI to Media: the International PR bodies, who have carried out detailed studies worldwide Today PR profession is emerging as a are helping PRCI Sub-Committee in management function due to pressure this regard. of competition and all the orgnisations in India have become PR savvy to enhance their image. Presently, there Website http://www.prc-india.org/ is no system in India for streamlining the profession with accountability, as Email : email@example.com
8 PR –eMINENCE - Global Accreditation Institutions The Universal Accreditation Board, USA http://www.prAccreditation.org/ Accreditation in Public Relations is a voluntary certification program for public relations professionals, administered by the Universal Accreditation Board. The Universal Accreditation Board, (UAB) which was created in 1998, is a consortium of 10 professional communications organizations. Each organization contributes resources and The Universal Accreditation Board senior-level volunteer members who oversees the Accreditation program represent all segments of the public and provides a balanced blend of relations profession. The UAB oversees backgrounds in a number of public the public relations profession's relations specialties. This group of professional certification program. A senior-level Accredited members revised Examination for Accreditation meets several times a year. in Public Relations was launched in July 2003. Chartered Institute of Public Relations, UK (CIPR) http://www.cipr.co.uk/ completed three year's participation in the Institute's Developing Excellence Continuous Professional Development (CPD) scheme, and is valid as long as that individual continues to take part in the scheme. Accredited Practitioners not only have improved status from being associated with the CIPR. It also reflects the steps they have taken to improve and maintain their competency as a PR CIPR Accredited Practitioners practitioner. Accredited Practitioners have demonstrated their commitment Accredited Practitioner status is to maintaining the highest levels of professional skills and knowledge. awarded to CIPR members who have
9 PR –eMINENCE - Global Accreditation Institutions Public Relations Institute of South Africa (PRISA) http://prisa.co.za/ What is the purpose of The purpose of PRISA's Accreditation Accreditation? certification is to recognise practitioners who have demonstrated broad knowledge, experience and professional judgement in the field. It seeks to improve public relations and communication management practice. The designation APR signifies a high professional level of experience and competence. How can Accreditation be used? An individual who is accredited may use the designation APR in conjunction with his or her name. APR is an Can one become accredited abbreviation for quot;Accredited in Public without being a member of PRISA? Relationsquot;. This identification shall be No. In view of the fact that used only with the name of the Accreditation is a level of registration member, who is accredited, not with within PRISA, it is not possible to take the name of any business or the assessment or use the designation organisation APR without being registered with the Institute. . Institute of Public Relations of Singapore (IPRS) http://www.iprs.org.sg/ IPRS is a self-regulating Accreditation body that sets international benchmark standards for public relations professionals in Singapore. The IPRS Accreditation Scheme is a distinctive recognition for PR professionals who have demonstrated strategic thinking, broad knowledge and experience in the field, and at the same time exhibited high standards of IPRS accredited PR practitioners are professionalism, commitment to the selected on their broad industry profession and code of ethics. knowledge, experience and expertise; strategic perspective and counsel, and Since its introduction 2004, the IPRS sound professional judgment and has 50 accredited members to date. contributions.
10 PR –eMINENCE - Global Accreditation Institutions The Canadian Public Relations Society, Inc (CPRS) http://www.cprs.ca/ dedication, energy, perseverance and competence of successful public relations professionals. To pursue the Accreditation process you must satisfy the following eligibility requirements: • You are a member in good standing of the Canadian Public Relations Society. • You have been employed full- time in a public relations position for at least five years; and CPRS Accreditation (APR) is a • You spend at least half of your respected measure of professional professional time involved in experience in the field of public specific public relations relations. This program recognizes the activities. Public Relations Institute of New Zealand (PRINZ) http://www.prinz.org.nz/ To advance your career in public relations you need PRiNZ Accreditation. We are the only industry organisation specifically dedicated to advancing the public relations profession, and only accredited PRINZ members are entitled to use the letters MPRINZ. MPRINZ or APR certifies that a public relations practitioner is both experienced and has a proven high level of professional knowledge. The PRiNZ Accreditation programme is Through Accreditation, PRiNZ sets only open to members and requires at standards of professional public least five years' experience in relations knowledge and tests professional public relations. members' understanding of this body of knowledge.
11 PR – eVENTS - What is happening around the world? New Zealand PRINZ (Public Relations Institute of feature the usual mix of networking, New Zealand) Conference 2006 at social functions and the Annual PRINZ Christchurch scheduled on June 2&3 is Awards. For details contact designed to be a learning and training firstname.lastname@example.org opportunity. The conference will also Singapore PR Academy, Singapore will be In Communications And PRquot;. For conducting its 5th Annual PR further details contact Conference on 31 May 06 on the PR_Academy@mica.gov.sg theme quot;New Media: The New Frontier Columbus, Ohio Summit on Corporate Communications exclusively for high-potential, mid- - June 28-30, 2006 Columbus Marriott career corporate communications and North, Columbus, Ohio public relations agency executives. For more details The newest element of the Institute for Public Relations Forums debuts in www.instituteforpr.org 2006, a three-day conference Mumbai, India Reputation Institute (RI) was launched organized on 20th of March. For details in India successfully at launch meeting visit www.reputationinstitute.com Chennai, India Mr Kirubashankar, a 2006. He cited various examples of leading Blogger of Corporate Blogging and explained as India shared his to how Blogs can be used as a good views with Corporate communication tool. Communicators at http://www.kiruba.com/ Chennai on 7th April
12 PR – e - LEARN - Knowledge sources PR Communication Age, monthly PR They are bringing out a comprehensive magazine published PR Directory for India. from Kolkatta since 1998 is now For more details contact Mr Rakesh restructuring the Agarwal, (Associate Editor) format of the email@example.com magazine to cover website : http://www.prgindia.com/ more information and interviews with PR/Corpcom professionals. PR eTTY - Relax Mitesh M Kapadia Sentinel Public Relations, Mumbai firstname.lastname@example.org Moses calls a staff meeting. Moses: Does Moses: Well, how are we going to get anyone have a across the sea? We need a fast solution? solution. The Egyptians are close behind us. Just then, his Public Relations The General of the Armies: man raises his Normally, I'd recommend that we build hand. a pontoon bridge to carry us across. But there's not enough time - the Moses: You! You have a solution? Egyptians are too close. The PR Man: No, but I can promise The Admiral of the Navy: Normally, you this: If you can find a way out of I'd recommend that we build barges to this one, I can get you two or three carry us across. But time is too short. pages in the Old Testament! PResentors of PReSENSE Editorial Advisors Chief Editor and Publisher: T N Ashok (Alstom) K. Srinivasan (Prime Point) Michael Driehorst, (The Lauerer Markin Editor: Narrendiran (Blue Lotus PR) Group Inc. USA) Editorial Board: Arun Arora (Maruti Udyog) Sakthi Prasanna (Brodeur India) Uma Bhushan (SIMSR) ) Meera R (Aspire Systems) Feedback and contributions to: Satish N (Anna University) email@example.com www.primepointfoundation.org
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