Corporate Communications International: Trends and Practices Study 2011

Seen as I was contacted to contribute to this blog as a representative of the ‘Communications people’ I think it is about time I posted on a communications topic!

At the end of September I was lucky enough to be able to attend a presentation by Corporate Communications International, an organisation directed by the Dr. Michael Goodman who is also the director of the MA in Corporate Communications at Baruch. One part of the work they do is undertake a study  in trends and practices in ‘the state of the art for corporate communications in publicly traded, multinational companies.’ This study started in 2000 and has been carried out every two years since, the presentation I attended reported the results of the 2011 research. The findings were very interesting, and are not only relevant to those in the communications profession but also to do with an interest in how the business world in changing in general.

To keep it brief I would like to share a few of the issues that I personally found most interesting. If you are interesting in finding out more the whole study is posted on the CCI website at www.corporatecomm.org/studies.

1. There has been an increase in the amount of attention given to corporate culture and employee communication in a response to continued uncertainty in global economic conditions.

Companies are realising that employees are their best asset, and that focusing on raising morale and investing in the people you do have can pay dividends in a non monetary sense!

2. Communication executives continue to see their primary role as “counsel to the CEO” and “manager of the company’s reputation.”

This positions the communications as a strategic function within the business. It also suggests the importance of reputation in the current environment. Many people have little or no trust for corporations following the stories of corporate greed that emerged out of the 2008 collapse, this means that perception of good reputation are at an all time low. This makes the job of the communications executive a challenging one!

3.Communications officers report the development of an expanded skill set, with even greater emphasis on business acumen and the ability to articulate ideas and persuade others.

This shows the growing importance of the communications function to core business. To be a highly successful communications professional business acumen is essential, how can you create a credible reputation for the company you represent if you yourself do not display credibility?

These were the three points that I personally found the most interesting from the research, there are several more that were also fascinating! CCI has a journal and also has many other interesting studies on their website. They are also running a symposium on November 4th at Baruch entitled ‘New Business Models for Energy Innovation’. This will focus on issues of sustainability. For more information visit their website at www.corporatecomm.org.

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