April 2, 2012
This month’s issue of Tactics focuses on corporate social responsibility. I’ve heard many opinions about where an organization’s “conscience” should reside. While PR practitioners play a crucial role in safeguarding reputation, it’s undeniable that an organization’s values start at the top.
At PRSA, “the top” is our Board of Directors — dedicated professionals who volunteer their time and expertise to serve as leaders. If you would like to help steer our organization — to be that conscience and guide for the future — then it’s time to step up for leadership opportunities.
Have you served on a board before? Do you have experience providing strategic guidance? Would you like to give back to PRSA? If so, then please see our website for details on joining PRSA’s board of directors.
There are many benefits to volunteering as a PRSA board member. Volunteers have an opportunity to connect with colleagues and learn new skills, from problem solving to supervisory skills. Studies also suggest a strong correlation between participation in community service and satisfaction in life.
Serving on the National board is different than serving as a Chapter or Section leader — it doesn’t involve detailed project management or day-to-day tactical involvement. Instead, you’ll provide strategic guidance, supervisory oversight and vision.
Our PRServing America project is a great example of our board in action. As practitioners, we know that public relations contributes to the public good through health campaigns, safety campaigns and other efforts — many of which have received Silver Anvil Awards. We also recognize that many Chapters, Districts and Sections have come together on their own to support local communities.
As a result, last year, our board supported the launch of PR Serving America to encourage our members to participate in pro bono PR work. Join your PRSA colleagues, find a deserving organization and use your PR skills to make a difference. If you are looking for an organization to support, then the DIY network and HGTV are sponsoring outreach by connecting PRSA members to Rebuilding Together affiliates, which provide free rehabilitation and repair services to low-income Americans. Those PRSA communities that carry out the best pro bono work will be eligible for cash awards from PRSA National.
Of course, PRSA’s board can only focus on the future and strategy if we are getting the basics right. We’re always looking for opportunities to better serve our members. We listen to your feedback.
During the past two years, the percentage of members who visited our website using a smartphone increased from 1 percent to 5 percent. We created mobile apps for our International Conference and for our Digital Impact Conference, which received positive reviews from members. Thus, we’ve launched a beta version of our mobile website to make PRSA more accessible on-the-go. We’re still testing this version, and will be adding enhancement and more functionality in the months ahead. In the meantime, feel free to take a look and let us know what you think.
While you’re there, check out all of the resources available to you through PRSA. Since CSR starts at the top and PR executives safeguard reputation, it is no wonder that the ethics portion of our website is one of the most heavily visited areas. Whether you are brushing up on our Code of Ethics, looking for specific guidance through our Professional Standards Advisories or seeking advice from our Board of Ethics and Professional Standards, we’re here for you.
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