Friday, November 20, 2009

PR Roles: Be a Strategic Adviser

I wasn't able to attend this year's PRSA International Conference. From what I gathered through presentation reviews, live-tweets, conversations, blog posts and back-channels, it seems to have been a worthwhile conference (aside from the big complaint of no wifi in the hotel and the delegate issues related to organizational governance. But that's for another time.)

One particular session caught my eye today was posted on the PRSA ComPRehension blog entitled “Developing a Strategic Mindset: How to Become a Trusted, Strategic Adviser presented by PR thought-leader James Lukaszewski.

This is excellent information from Al Kruger and I recommend reading the full post if you're a PR practitioner who seeks wisdom on how to becoming a trusted strategic adviser for your organization. Here's an excerpt:

The Top Things That Leaders Are Looking for in Strategic Counselors
  1. Advice on the spot — Management is a real-time activity. It happens now, so leaving a meeting and offering recommendations later in the day isn’t valuable to them.
  2. Say things that matter from the boss’s perspective … not your perspective — Put yourself in your boss’s shoes. When you offer advice and talk in meetings, you have to ask yourself — Is this really important? Is this what we’re here to talk about? 
  3. Provide focus — In meetings you may need to pull leaders back and get them centered on what’s important and relevant in the problem/issue you are discussing right now.
  4. Leaders want help with things they don’t already know — Pointing out the obvious isn’t valuable. What can you bring to the table that is lacking?
  5. They want options to consider — If you only offer one option they will likely question it to death, so give them other ideas that can work.
  6. Bosses want help with what to do next — They already know what has happened. Give them ideas on what the company should do and offer insight about what will happen because of it.
This review post by Al Krueger is well worth the read and bookmark. Kruger also touches on a way to break down discussions into their most important parts for efficiency and so you can offer appropriate PR counsel.

What other things are looked for by leadership in strategic counselors? The comments are yours.

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