A phase of making the first wish come true
When new clients come to us, their wish is often either very large or very specific. It usually happens when the client is a smaller organization looking for a solution for a specific issue. The phase of making this first wish come true is a so-called “test period” for the agency.
This period is characterized by the fact that it is difficult to balance performance at the discretion (on the basis of knowledge and experience) of the agency’s experts on the one hand, and the client’s trust, the transparency of the procedures and the scope of the action on the other. In such situations, it is not (always) essential (enough) what the clients believe they need to solve their challenge, so the proposal must be formulated in order to cover everything optimal for achieving their communication goal. Perhaps, for example, the client doesn’t need a media announcement as he / she wishes, but a personal dialogue with relevant stakeholders. He / she may need an internal event instead of an employee of the year award. Or vice versa. Depending on the goal and the situation.
The proposal, which explains how the work will be executed in order to get the best result, must correspond to the client as well as the agency – it’s a kind of diagnosis of needs and scope of services. At this “negotiations stage”, nothing is standardized. It’s important to have a strong knowledge of the matter and profession, the awareness of own role and ensure the compliance with all the necessary rules of good behaviour. 😊
At the end of this phase, it must be clear to the agency what is needed and how much effort is necessary to get the work done:
– Which functions or parts of the function should the work include?
– What are the effects desired?
– Which are the tools needed?
– How to measure the results of the work?
– What is the budget for the service?
On the other hand, it must be clear to the client:
– What will the agency do and why?
– What the agency will not do and why not?
– What are the positive and negative effects of the work?
– How will these effects be measured?
– How much will it cost?
These are therefore standard questions, but the suggestions of solutions are subjective. And who has more of a say here?
The greatest skill a good public relations specialist needs is certainly the ability to use the language. It in fact represents the only real and absolute communication limitation, since public relations professionals must have a high level of language skills in order to be able to fulfil their tasks. The sophistication of communication and receiving messages is therefore the main skill of every expert in writing, listening, speaking, visual presentations, computer literacy, body language, and, last but not least, other stimuli such as auditory, tangible and even olfactory stimulus – all can be part of a communication experience and should be considered.
Whichever the talent, one doesn’t need to be excellent in all skills. It is not necessary for a public relations expert to be a computer programmer or an excellent drama actor. However, it is important to be fully aware of the multilayeredness of the language and signals involved in communication activities. It is important for a public relations advisor to have an above-average ability to manage all of these skills in our everyday work.