Word to the wise: Keep your opinions to yourself

September 22, 2020

This advice goes out to the newer and younger professionals working in corporate communications, public relations and media relations because I’m assuming old dogs such as I already know this: Keep your personal opinions to yourself. I was reminded of the wisdom of this advice yesterday when I read the CNN article that stated, “A public affairs […]

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Advice about goal setting applies to creating talking points: less is more

August 15, 2020

I just finished reading the highly informative, educational and entertaining book The Ride of a Lifetime by Robert Iger. In it, he reveals how he rose from an entry level position at ABC Television in 1974 to eventually become CEO of the Walt Disney Company in 2005. Obtaining the CEO job was certainly not an […]

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Never forget to include the “why” when communicating to employees

May 6, 2020

I read an excellent article in the new issue of American Banker magazine by John Enger about how experiencing past disasters helped bankers deal with the coronavirus crisis (click here to read the entire article). Some of the past disasters the article mentions include Hurricane Katrina in the southern U.S. in 2005 and the 2017 […]

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Virus is a once-in-a-career opportunity for earned coverage

March 12, 2020

The coronavirus has become the number one news story in America and appears it will remain that way for at least the next eight to 12 months. It’s touching practically every segment of society in our country. I’m hard pressed to think of a story as big as this one during my 40+ year career. […]

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That memorable day when I met the world’s greatest journalist

October 22, 2019

In my last journalism job before I switched careers, I worked in the late 1980s as the Los Angeles bureau manager for what was then a small, family-owned, recreational boating newspaper called The Log (as in ship’s log). The Log was based in San Diego and published every other week. It was a free newspaper […]

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A local angle to national/international news = a successful placement

September 29, 2019

Regardless of your political affiliation, the biggest story in the national news right now is the efforts by Democrats to impeach Pres. Trump. My hometown newspaper, The Oregonian (based in Portland, Ore.) published a story in its edition today that is an example of one of the proven strategies I will teach in my News […]

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Become a comms hero by using what already exists at media outlets

September 20, 2019

I was watching a news story the other day on the local ABC-TV affiliate where I live and noticed they have a feature called “Everyday Heroes.” It highlights someone in the community who does great things for others with not much fanfare. I later realized that what I did next would make a good lesson […]

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Here’s how to boost your success when making a media pitch

May 19, 2019

One of the highlights for me of the 2019 Portland Communicators Conference was a panel discussion among three members of the Portland Business Journal (PBJ) editorial staff. Editor Suzanne Stevens was joined on stage by reporters Pete Danko and Elizabeth Hayes. Their topic: how to best interact with the PBJ staff so you don’t waste […]

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Lessons from this year’s Portland Communicators Conference

May 14, 2019

I had the pleasure of attending the Portland Communicators Conference on May 3, presented by the Oregon chapter of the Public Relations Society of America. Here are a few of the many gems I learned that day: 1) Our mind makes 35,000 decisions each day. 2) Today’s children don’t expect to wait for anything. 3) […]

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Don’t forget that every story has a beginning

October 12, 2018

Every story has a beginning, middle and end. But many public relations professionals neglect to emphasize what can be the most important part: the beginning. Let me explain by giving you two examples. At a large bank where I was once employed, I started working with a new regional president who had transferred to my […]

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