PR bodies in India - An introspection

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Information about PR bodies in India - An introspection

Published on May 4, 2007

Author: prpoint



Corporate ezine PR-e-Sense April 2007 issue, discusses the various aspect and functioning of PR bodies in India. This issue also carries an exclusive interview with Ms K Bhavani, President, Institute of Public Relations, Singapore. This ezine is also integrated with podcast.

India’s first corporate PR ezine VOL 2 Issue 2 –April 07 Published by Prime Point Foundation (Supported by Chennai PR Club) PR-e-FACE: From the desk of Chief Editor “Re-orient PR bodies to avoid being dumped into history“ PR movement in India PRCI reflect the new trends. was started way back in Probably, majority of the members do 1957 by few enlightened not even belong to the PR or the visionaries, when the PR Communication profession. The profession itself was managements of these organisations unknown. Presently, the should be able to, if not, integrate PR profession is gaining themselves with the changes in the its due importance thanks technology and dreams should not to the increasing competition on the remain in 'un-updated' websites as business market place with the growth 'Mission and Vision". of the Indian industry and economy, entrance of MNCs into the country, the With large number of young proliferation of the media, adoption of professionals entering the PR Industry global PR standards by PR agencies now, PR associations in India need to through mergers, affiliations, or 'introspect' themselves and adapt to otherwise. the new professionalism. Instead of every organisation announcing the The irony here is that at a time when same scheme, (like Accreditation) we are going to celebrate the 'Golden causing confusion amongst the young Jubilee' of PR movement in India, people, they need to shed their 'ego' many in the industry are divided and sit together to prepare a 'master among PR groups and associations plans' for future generation. with each having their separate ideologies and thinking, that often They may even adopt the 'Singapore come in the way of having a model' of ’Young PR Council" to collaborated effort in taking the develop professional and leadership industry forward further. Also many skills. PRSI and PRCI, being respected choose not to join any of these national professional bodies, need to associations as they feel that major 'institutionalise' their bodies like CII, national PR bodies in India like PRSI FICCI, NASSCOM, instead of being and PRCI have been reduced to more 'personality' centric. of 'regional outfits', due to various factors like in-fighting, ego issues, PRSI and PRCI should realise that if absence of leadership succession they do not 'reorient' themselves to policy, lack of involvement of youth, the changing trends in the industry by etc. synergising their strength and wisdom, they might be 'dumped' into Currently, more than 90 percent of the 'history' and the industry might march professionals in the PR industry belong forward without them. K. Srinivasan to younger generation. We need to ask ourselves whether the membership and leadership profile of the PRSI and

2 PR-e-CISE – Inside this ezine • • An exclusive interview with Ms Views by the Presidents of PRSI, Bhavani, President, Institute of PR, PRCI and ABCI • Singapore Views from Senior and Junior • Expert views on PR bodies by Dr C professionals V N Reddi and Mr C J Singh. PR-eXCLUSIVE “IPRS aims at making Singapore as a PR Hub in the Region” Listen to the full interview through podcast at Ms K. Bhavani is the This Young PR Council is a platform to President, Institute train some of the young professionals of PR, Singapore. for eventual leadership for PR She is the Director Institute. They can also excite other (Corporate young people in the Industry to come Communication) and forward, participate and do activities. Press Secretary to They learn from and help each other. Minister of They can learn about PR strategies Information and through different programmes. communication, Govt. of Singapore Besides this, other way to raise the professionalism is ‘training’. We are In an exclusive interview with K. conducting various training Srinivasan of PR-e-Sense, Ms Bhavani programmes in Singapore. IPRS explains the initiatives of Institute of organises Certificate courses and Public Relations, Singapore to promote Diploma courses to provide more professionalism amongst the young knowledge. Certificate course is for people. three months. Her interview may also be listened Diploma course provides more in- through podcast (click the link given depth knowledge and is offered upto 9 above) months. PR practioners have to understand ethical standards and code Excerpts from her interview: of ethics. Eventually, they should get accreditation. This will help the In Singapore young PR professionals employers also to understand that are not involved in the Institute. these people are qualified people. I Institute of Public Relations, Singapore hope, with these initiatives, Singapore (IPRS) has formed ‘Young PR Council”. can be a Regional Hub for PR This Council is led by PR practitioners, practioners. who are new to the Industry. ‘New’ is a subjective term. Whether it is age or experience? For us, ‘young’ means Ms Bhavani may be reached at ‘new’ to the industry.

3 PR –e- STIGE – Expert views Dr C V Narasimha Reddi, Editor, PR Voice, Hyderabad “PRSI and PRCI should make joint efforts to develop professional excellence” Public people suffer from professional Relations excellence. Society of America My submission is that PRSI and PRCI (PRSA) and should try to promote Public Relations Chartered and professionalism. Institute of Public The major pitfall in the Indian PR Relations, profession is lack of ‘in-service London training’. These two PR bodies should (CIPR), play a major role in promoting make joint efforts in this area, by professionalism in their respective approaching Universities and UGC. In countries. We have to achieve a lot in India we do not have exclusive PR the field of professionalism, in India. courses. Whether it is Public Relations Society In Western countries, exclusive of India (PRSI) or Public Relations courses are available in PR. Whatever Council of India (PRCI), their aim be the differences between PRSI and should be to promote PR and PRCI, they should make joint efforts professional excellence. Need of the for creating “professional development hour is to promote professional programmes”. This is a pre-requisite excellence. We have grown for the growth of PR profession. quantitatively; but we are yet to grow qualitatively. Of course, there are few PR professionals in India, who match International standards. But many Mr Charanjit Singh, Mg. Director, Core PR Chandigarh “PRSI and PRCI should institutionalise their set up without being personality centric” Both PRSI and PRCI are respected entire setup and emerge from organisations and ‘personality-centric’ and ‘ego-centric’ they are doing a goals. The entire Public Relations good job. Now, it profession requires a major ‘image is the right time overhaul’, which requires multifaceted for all PR bodies to time-bound transparent action plans show more involving the entire PR community maturity and within their ambit so as to have develop a roadmap appropriate feedback on several for their future issues, which are of larger import than growth. mere guided by parochialism. Let us Unfortunately in our country, we are take the first step, develop the enamoured by the personalities and leadership, and institutionalise the PR the same is happening with our PR bodies, which can only help in bodies too. Immediate agenda for professionalising the entire setup. them should be to institutionalise the . Podcast: You can listen to the views of Dr Reddy and Mr C J Singh in the podcast at

4 PR –e- STIGE – Expert views Mr Yogesh Joshi, President, Association of Business Communicators of India, Mumbai “ABCI conducts various programmes to enhance the knowledge” Association of Business For those ‘novice’ who are entering the Communicators profession with some knowledge and of India (ABCI) want to learn more, we are organising is soon programmes in printing, publishing, in- launching house journal, brochure upto web ‘accreditation designing. This will increase their programme’ for professional skills. students, who want to make their career in ‘PR and We are presently conducting two day Business communication’. training programme on ‘Business communication” covering wide ABCI is also launching a ‘rating’ for the spectrum of areas to enhance the Institutions who are running Public knowledge of people who are already Relations and Business Communication in the PR and Business communication Schools. This will facilitate the profession. , students to know the ranking of the schools. This will also enable the Schools to raise their standards in a competitive scenario. . Podcast: You can listen to the views of Mr Yogesh Joshi in the podcast at Mr M B Jayaram, National Council Chairman, PRCI “India needs multiple PR bodies to develop the profession” PRCI's good We need more & more professional programmes can bodies to work for the professional certainly attract the growth & not a single body to manage young crowd. Our in a country like India for so many recent progamme is reasons i.e. financial health of the one such programme. Professional bodies/ leadership crisis/ ( GLOBAL MEET ). We with out any infrastructure facilities/ will try to circulate the lack of team work/ vast area/ different proceedings of the regions & so many other problems Meet to everyone, who may be the reasons for not acting are really interested in PR. (its under together to buildup .the profession. If print ). more Professional bodies work for the common goal in different places, may be in a small way, we can achieve PRCI"s main motto is to standardize more, if not 100%. Once we grow to the profession itself by online some extent, we can think of a education,/Accreditation programme combined effort. In my opinion, this is etc. Accreditation course will not the right time to have one commence from July 2007. organisation to manage everything Programmes once in a month on PR oriented .subjects are also planned for professionals. by PRCI.

5 PR –e- STIGE – Expert views Dr Ajit Pathak, National President, PRSI “PRSI’s commitment has not yet been encashed” PRSI has set up respect. Focusing on providing a an advisory platform for development of the national students and the upcoming PR committee on professionals is independent of joint Public Relations / efforts. In fact each of the PR mass organization is working for the cause communication of PR, though the routes may be education which different. PRSI, as the premier will examine the national body, is willing to support, present any such activity, be it any individual curriculum in or the group. practice in the Indian Institutes and will benchmark it with international PRSIs commitment for the youth has best, keeping national requirements in not been encashed effectively, partly mind. The committee will also examine because of lack of fire among the possibilities to promote PR literature students and partly because of and research opportunities in order to inappropriate efforts of our chapters to bring credibility and professional involve them. PR – e- Groups – Have you joined discussion groups? Image Management Group – Second largest yahoo group on PR with nearly 1500 global members. Click here PRpoint Group - The largest Indian group for PR/CorpComm /academic professionals with700 plus members. Click here New Media Forum Group – A group for Indian journalists with around 350 members. Click here India Vision Group – A group for Indian youth on India Vision 2020 with around 1200 members. Click here Subscribe to this ezine PR-e-Sense – Click here

6 PR – e - Views – PR Seniors and Juniors react A senior member of PRSI and PRCI (Identity suppressed on request) “Seniors in PRSI and PRCI should give way to younger generation” Why are the seniors strength of ‘junk’ of members. If PR is so stubborn at their global exchange of values that we are personal ego's? We talking about, then let's think and act see ethics, mission, global. vision in all the booklets of the Also, most of the leaders in both PRSI forums that are and PRCI want to stick to ‘chairs’ and available in the ‘positions’ for ‘life time’. Its time for country. No body speaks about respectable seniors to realize the “EGO”. Can a PR person have more of importance of delegation to juniors ego than stuff? Some of them are still and allow them to function more not willing to use technology. They systematically and innovatively. need assistance to do the job. Seniors are experienced, juniors are intelligent and up-to-date. The blend of the two can give additional strength to the PR professional bodies than the Shvetha Sridhar, New entrant to PR profession “Orientation programme needed for new entrants” I personally feel, that like all the IT media relations which is where we are companies PR agencies also should held up with. As new comers, we need have 1-2 guidance as to whom we can approach months of and how to approach people, be it training print or broadcast media. before they actually get I suggest, we have training period into the atleast for a period of 1 month where work place. we are given coaching by senior Even people from the PR industry - as to though we what we should do and what we have done should not. Be it - Business lots of campaigns and events at the Development, Client Servicing or college level, and have interacted with Media Relations. As freshers we are the media a few times, our college has going wrong making the wrong moves, always helped us and has given us and this is creating a bad image for some backing so that we dont take up the PR industry. I am telling this out of all the pressure. my personal experience. But when it comes to work, we are May I appeal to PR bodies to conduct under pressure and are expected to ‘orientation programmes’ to the new develop media contacts and do good entrants to the profession?

7 PR – e - Views – PR Seniors and Juniors react Rajiv Harjai, PG Student of PR in Leeds Metropolitan University, UK All forces should join hands to make a grand ‘Public Relations Institute of India’ ` I think all the guidelines they produce, the these societies awards they hold, the competitions, should have and how much they support the one meeting students etc... They do an amazing job and decide if for the PR Profession. they could join forces to make If you would personally like to get in a great Public touch with them and see if CIPR Relations can contribute to making of a great Institute/Council/Society, Whatever Institute of Public Relations in they want to call it. India, please let me know. I am currently the Student Representative Now joining forces will make a great for CIPR in my University and I will see Public Relations Institute of India." what can be done on this front and how much help CIPR can Secondly, since everyone is talking provide. about International practitioners and developed countries Public Relations You can e-mail me regarding Institutes, please check out what they this at do. Go to Check out their website, the events they have, Hobbithob, Account Director in a PR Agency Blog: “All programmes should be targeted to young professionals, instead of only CEOs” 1. Can we have any 4. Remember young PR people cannot training programs of just leave office and attend the PR people and events. It's the bosses who attend certification by PR such events to pass away the time for associations? a day. They do not do much work anyway. Make it necessary for the 2. The events are all air-talk and have agencies to send their employees to no practical benefits - that's such events. the common notion, if not by me. They are targeted for the CEOs. The 5. The moderator's mail mentioning registration fees are priced like about PR bodies not providing any there's no tomorrow. Many people inputs, in a way, reflects the think associations hold these events to indifference among PR professionals get sponsorships and earn a few and bodies in India. I wonder why do bucks. Let's hold workshops and we have three associations already. Do discuss tools and learning that we can not expect young PR people to implement. collaborate and contribute to the PR industry's growth when there 3. Seminars, seminars, and more are indifferences among the seniors. seminars. Anything else?

8 PR – e - Views – PR Seniors and Juniors react A young lady PR executive with 2 years of service (identity suppressed on request) “PR bodies promise the mission and vision only in their websites” Appalling is the state seminars and no round tables... NO of PR bodies like perspective on Public Relations in the PRSI, PRCI and Indian context... have ever been PRCAI and the conducted by these responsible bodies others... who have in the last 3 years that I have been taken responsibility in associated with this industry! shaping the PR Interesting enough is the Mission and industry in India! Very little or close to Vision that these bodies promise on none has been done in my view for the their websites... which is confined only development of young professionals by on the webpages of their websites... these bodies who have taken onus to and does not materialise in reality! build the future of public relations in Nothing noteworthy has been done to India. No newsletter, no industry encourage young talent to get more updates, no forums, no case studies, participative in this country. no awards, no recognition, no PR bodies - At a glance Association of Business Since its formation Mr M B Jayaram is Communicators of India (ABCI): the Chairman of the National Council. Established in the year 1957 with Head Website : Quarters at Mumbai. Mr Yogesh Joshi Email : is currently the President of the Association. Global Forum for Public Relations Website (GFPR) : Established in the year Email 2006 with Head Quarters at Hyderabad. Br. B K Karuna is the Public Relations Society of India President since its inception. (PRSI) : Established in the year 1958 Website – Started functioning as a formal body Email: in 1966 with Head Quarters at Mumbai. Mr Kali H. Mody was the Public Relations Consultants founder President of PRSI from 1966 Association of India (PRCAI) : to 1969. Dr Ajit Pathak is the current PRCAI is a trade association formed to National President represent India's public relations Website : consultancy sector. The Membership of Email: PRCAI is restricted to consultancies that meet the basic criteria set out by Public Relations Council of India the Association. (PRCI) –Established in the year 2004 Website: with Head Quarters at Bangalore. Email:

9 PR eTTY - Relax – Do you know who is on the other side of phone? A man joined a big Multi National "It's the Managing Director of the Company as a trainee company, you idiot!" On his first day, he dialed the kitchen The trainee shouted back: "And do you and shouted into the phone: "Get me a know whom YOU are talking to, you cup of coffee, quickly!" IDIOT?" The voice from the other side "No!" replied the Managing Director responded: "You fool, you've dialed angrily the wrong extension! Do you know whom you're talking to?" "Thank God...!" replied the trainee and put down the phone "No" replied the trainee. PResentors of PReSENSE Consulting Editor Consulting Editor Editor Associate Editor Ms S Vidya, CES Onyx Ms Uma, Corporate P A Narrendiran, S. Sakthi Prasanna Commu nicator Blue Lotus PR Hanmer and Partners PR Associate Editor and Pod-Jockey M M Sevakumar N Satish Ms Veena Vinod Senior Web consultant Student, Anna University Good Relations PR Publisher and chief Editor K. Srinivasan (Prime Point Foundation) Feedback and contributions to: All the earlier issues may be downloaded from Listen to India’s first pod-magazine one stop shop for podcasts on all subjects Do you want to subscribe to this ezine. Please click

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