This statement, from the former President of the European Commission, Jacques Delors, resonated with me hugely when I heard it on a Podcast this week.
In daily life, we fluctuate between optimism and pessimism. It’s normal and it’s expected. But in PR, there is no such dichotomy. The only stance we can take is that of an activist. It’s not a choice, it’s a responsibility.
At its core, activism in PR signifies a proactive approach to communication and engagement. We adopt an activist mindset by actively seeking opportunities to drive positive change for our clients to promote brand visibility and align them with values and causes that resonate with their audience. So it pays to find agencies that represent brands and industries that interest us and activate our activist selves.
20 years ago, as an entry level in consumer PR, I was an activist for anything that looked, smelled, or tasted good and as a fairly natural communicator, securing coverage wasn’t hard. But times were very different in the early 2000s and a direct dial for Glamour’s fashion desk where the resident junior would actually pick up the phone, was the norm. A new client would arrive in the showroom, and it was a fight for who got to work on the account, who got to manage the photo shoots and if we were lucky, who got to keep some of the product at the end of the season. We were activists and we were hungry for the results we were committed to delivering for our clients.
But as life evolved with relationships and responsibility, so did my interests and I’ve been fortunate to move around the world of PR and experience many brands that resonate with my activist self at various stages of my life.
At JHPR, among our expertise across the Built Environment and Professional Services landscapes, we are Midlands experts, and we know how to gain traction for our clients. We’re also passionate and will happily acknowledge that we’re learning all the time but as activists, we’re fast learners and we’re driven.
There will always be tricky days in PR. Long days researching pitching and hitting brick walls. But because we’re activists we come back fighting, day after day.
Jacques Delors’ words remind us that, as PR professionals, we have the power to drive positive change for our clients and the communities they serve. By embracing activism, we can become architects of positive change, proving that in the world of PR, activism is not a choice. It’s the way we’re wired and it’s very much a responsibility.