Successfully reported this slideshow.
Your SlideShare is downloading. ×

Where are we where should we be

Ad
Ad
Ad
Ad
Ad
Ad
Ad
Ad
Ad
Ad
Ad
W HERE ARE WE ?
W HERE SHOULD WE BE ?
What communication professionals are thinking




Neil Griffiths and Deborah Hinton
...
Copyright © 2012 by Neil Griffiths and Deborah Hinton
CONTENTS

        2   EXECUTIVE OVERVIEW

        3   ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

        4   INTRODUCTION

        5   PURPOSE, MET...
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Loading in …3
×

Check these out next

1 of 37 Ad

Where are we where should we be

Download to read offline

After surveying 100 communication professionals, we believe there is an important opportunity for communication professionals to engage in a further discussion and exploration with one another to discover practical approaches for advancing the profession.

Post you reflections here to continue the conversation.

After surveying 100 communication professionals, we believe there is an important opportunity for communication professionals to engage in a further discussion and exploration with one another to discover practical approaches for advancing the profession.

Post you reflections here to continue the conversation.

Advertisement
Advertisement

More Related Content

Slideshows for you (20)

Similar to Where are we where should we be (20)

Advertisement

Recently uploaded (20)

Where are we where should we be

  1. 1. W HERE ARE WE ? W HERE SHOULD WE BE ? What communication professionals are thinking Neil Griffiths and Deborah Hinton September 2012
  2. 2. Copyright © 2012 by Neil Griffiths and Deborah Hinton
  3. 3. CONTENTS 2 EXECUTIVE OVERVIEW 3 ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS 4 INTRODUCTION 5 PURPOSE, METHOD AND FINDINGS 11 CONCLUSIONS 13 WHERE TO FROM HERE? 14 ABOUT THE AUTHORS 15 APPENDIX 1 - THE SURVEY: INTRODUCTION, QUESTIONS AND RESULTS 33 APPENDIX 2 - RESEARCH METHODOLOGY 34 APPENDIX 3 - THE SURVEY RESULTS AND THEIR "STATISTICAL SIGNIFICANCE" WHERE ARE WE? WHERE SHOULD WE BE? 1
  4. 4. EXECUTIVE OVERVIEW Deluged by a tsunami of prescriptive advice about where the communication profession is heading, we set out to ask those working in the profession what they think and how they’re doing. Our survey of over 100 communication professionals reviews the recommendations of The Authentic Enterprise1, and finds they strongly agree that the communication function should be in the C-suite and play a leadership role on values, relationships, ‘new media’ and trust now and in the future. But, they don’t agree on how the communication function should assume this role. In addition, our survey reveals a discrepancy between what communication professionals say they aspire to and what they’re actually doing, both in terms of leadership and in their professional development. As a result, we feel there’s an important opportunity for further discussion and exploration within the profession to discover what practical approaches communication professionals need to: • Demonstrate to their leaders and themselves that communications is not a function; it is a core strategic competence • Make the transition from the past to the future. • Ensure they are in a strong position to fulfill their aspirations for themselves, their function and their organizations. 1 Arthur W. Page Society, 2007 WHERE ARE WE? WHERE SHOULD WE BE? 2
  5. 5. ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS Our thanks to the survey participants for sharing their thinking about the current state and future possibilities for the profession. We appreciated the time they spent on the thoughtful and thought-provoking answers. We also thank the Arthur W. Page Society for their study The Authentic Enterprise; the inspiration for our survey. And finally, thanks to Michael Hinton and Doron Solomon. The former for his input on the statistical side of the survey and bringing plain English to our report, and the latter for his support in survey editing, report layout and technical advice. WHERE ARE WE? WHERE SHOULD WE BE? 3
  6. 6. INTRODUCTION Communication professionals are deluged with a tsunami of prescriptive advice from industry gurus, bloggers and individual communicators about what they should and shouldn’t be doing2. Most of this advice is based on anecdotal evidence and subjective opinion rather than objective research3. An exception is The Authentic Enterprise4 report. When published five years ago the report didn’t generate the excitement, interest and debate in the profession that one would have expected from such a well-researched and provocative report. This is surprising since it appears to us that studies like this one are what we, as a profession, have long been saying we needed. The Authentic Enterprise is based on “original research among CEOs, [their] …experience and a broad range of studies and perspectives” and it provides an important CEO-view of the opportunities and challenges facing senior communication executives. Surprisingly, in the five years since its publication no one has tested the report’s recommendations with the views of communication professionals. We believed it was time to take a closer look to understand the implications for our profession now and in the future. In particular, we wanted to see if communication professionals agreed with the conclusions and recommendations of the study and how they supported their views, and if they had any thoughts about the implications of the study on the future of professional communication. Our hope is our findings will generate practical insights and lead to a constructive discussion within the profession about where communication professionals are and where they should be going. 2 Our sources include the daily stream of articles from various professional association newsletters and magazines, conference outlines, industry blog posts, etc. in the lead up to and since our decision to undertake this project in 2011 3 “Reimagining our profession – Public Relations for a complex world”; Richard Edelman address; IPR 50th Annual Distinguished lecture and awards dinner; November 10, 2011 4 Arthur W. Page Society, 2007 WHERE ARE WE? WHERE SHOULD WE BE? 4
  7. 7. PURPOSE, METHOD AND FINDINGS The purpose of our survey was to measure the level of communication professionals’ agreement with the main conclusions of The Authentic Enterprise in order to encourage informed discussion about the profession5. In June and July of 2012, we surveyed people who identified themselves as communication professionals6. We received 107 responses. On average, respondents were well-educated [many with graduate degrees and post-graduate studies], experienced [10 years or more] communication professionals, working in a corporate communications function [internal more than external] for large [more than 1,000 employees, many more than 10,000] publicly traded or privately held, for-profit companies. Appendix 3 presents a discussion of the “statistical significance” of what they told us. In each of the sections below, we have included a sample of open-field responses to give the reader an idea of the nature of feedback we received. OVER 90% OF PARTICIPANTS AGREE WITH THE CEOS IN THE AUTHENTIC ENTERPRISE ON THREE STATEMENTS: O THE COMMUNICATION FUNCTION SHOULD REPORT TO THE CEO THROUGH A CHIEF COMMUNICATION OFFICER. O THE COMMUNICATION FUNCTION SHOULD PLAY A LEADERSHIP ROLE IN THESE FOUR AREAS – VALUES, RELATIONSHIPS, ‘NEW MEDIA’ AND TRUST. O THE FOUR AREAS – VALUES, RELATIONSHIPS, ‘NEW MEDIA’ AND TRUST ARE RELEVANT TO THE FUTURE OF COMMUNICATION. The first two statements imply an important leadership role for the communication function and it is not surprising that communication professionals strongly agree. What is surprising is that: • many fewer [60%] say that their function actually does report to the CEO, and • upon further questioning about their role in the four areas – values, relationships, ‘new media’ and trust – the results are not nearly as conclusive. Although a majority agree that the communication function should be a leader/facilitator in the following areas: • enabling the enterprise with ‘new media’ skills [87%] • enabling the enterprise with ‘new media’ tools [84%] • instilling company values [75%]. … there is only moderate agreement that the communication function should lead/facilitate in these areas: 5 See Appendix 1 for the cover letter, survey questions and responses 6 See Appendix 2 for our research methodology WHERE ARE WE? WHERE SHOULD WE BE? 5
  8. 8. • managing multi-stakeholder relationships [63%] • building trust in all its dimensions [62%] • building multi-stakeholder relationships [59%] • defining company values [57%] • managing trust in all its dimensions [57%] So, although communication professionals believe they have a leadership role, they are not aligned in their view of what that leadership should look like. In the open-ended questions, both those who agree and disagree, refer to either another function’s ownership or shared responsibility (e.g. HR, IT, Finance, Sales, others in the C-suite, and/or leaders in general) for values, relationships, ‘new media’ and trust. IN THEIR WORDS … “I’m not sure communications should play a leadership role in defining the company culture, but should certainly play a leadership role in sharing them and making them live in the organization.” “Leave the social media to the social communities. Media are never strategic. Managing trust is a continuation of old thinking.” “Communicators create connections and conversations.” “Stakeholder engagement is the most important role the communication function has.” “Communication function needs to drive the strategy and content of new media in support of the company’s business goals. But IT is better positioned to enable skills.” “A company’s new media voice needs to be decentralized to be authentic.” “No other professional group in the organization, outside of the CEO and the Board, have yet claimed the role of organizational conscience or reputational guardian.” “If leadership does not see trust as a priority, … [and if they aren’t trust worthy]…, then communications is just so much pretty talk.” WHERE ARE WE? WHERE SHOULD WE BE? 6
  9. 9. MOST RESPONDENTS AGREE THAT: O THE COMMUNICATION FUNCTION HAS EVOLVED SIGNIFICANTLY OVER THE PAST THREE DECADES AND IS ACHIEVING INCREASED STATURE WITHIN THE CORPORATION. O THE CONVERGING FORCES OF TECHNOLOGY, GLOBAL INTEGRATION, MULTIPLYING STAKEHOLDERS AND THE RESULTING NEED FOR TRANSPARENCY ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT COMMUNICATIONS CHALLENGES FACING 21ST CENTURY COMPANIES. Specifically, 79% of participants agree the communication function has evolved significantly and is achieving stature. Interestingly, a larger percentage of communication professionals in not-for-profit and public sector agreed [93%] than did those in privately held and publicly traded organizations [72%]. Three key trends are cited as evidence of this change in the responses to the open questions with respondents reporting: increased executive support for communications, quality of communication leadership and influence within the organization. Other comments include: increased pressure and higher expectations for real-time, transparent communication, demand for qualified talent, improving quality of communications education/research and increased respect in the press and from CEOs. Those who disagree with this positive trend cite several reasons, including: their budgets not increasing despite increased demand, the reactive nature of the function and the often- peripheral position of communications within the organization. Nearly 80% agree that the converging forces described in the report are still the most important communication challenges facing 21st century companies. All public sector respondents [100%] agree with this statement, followed by 74% of those in privately held, publicly-traded organizations and not-for-profits. Those who disagree about the forces cite other more important challenges, including better integration of business and social issues, social media (interestingly this was seen as distinct from technology), and proliferation and complexity of information. When asked what the implications of these challenges are for the communication function almost all of those who disagree responded to this question. And though described in different ways, their answers boil down to this: a perception that the communication function of today may not have the perspective, knowledge and experience needed to anticipate important trends, understand the implications for the business and design and implement flexible, effective communication strategies. WHERE ARE WE? WHERE SHOULD WE BE? 7
  10. 10. IN THEIR WORDS … “The role of communication has moved from marginal to central.” “Strategic thinking from communications professionals is either received as surprising or is unwelcome.” “We need to up our game.” THERE IS ONLY MODERATE AGREEMENT [70%] WITH THE CONCLUSION: O COMMUNICATORS ARE UNIQUELY POSITIONED TO BECOME EXPERTS ON THE ART AND SCIENCE OF ORGANIZATIONAL TRUST. Given the level of agreement for the communication function’s role in building and managing trust, this result could be seen as surprising. We may have expected a higher level of agreement. Those who disagree again cite other functions as having important roles to play in building organizational trust. In other words, trust isn’t just about the communication function. That said, those who agree suggest four main reasons why: 1. The C-suite sees trust as a priority and turns to us for answers [note: those who disagreed felt precisely the opposite] 2. They have the right perspective: cross-business, cross-functional, cross- stakeholder 3. They have the right skills and expertise around managing and measuring reputation 4. They have access to the right communication tools and channels. IN THEIR WORDS … “We are in a position to be the reality check on what is said internally and publicly and how that compares to what behaviours various key stakeholders see.” WHERE ARE WE? WHERE SHOULD WE BE? 8
  11. 11. OPINION IS ROUGHLY EVENLY DIVIDED ON THE STATEMENT: O WE ARE NO LONGER IN CONTROL OF OUR TRADITIONAL SPHERES OF PROFESSIONAL ACTIVITY. INDEED ALL BUSINESS FUNCTIONS ARE AT THE DAWN OF AN ERA OF RADICAL DE-PROFESSIONALIZATION. Of all the questions in the survey this one generated the most equivocal response [52% agreed] and may suggest that respondents do not see the opportunity of the function’s important cross-business and cross-functional positioning as positively as the CEOs in The Authentic Enterprise. Those agreeing cite the explosion of social media and its impact on the organization, as well as the flattening of the organization and blurring of boundaries between the different parts of the business being the main reasons for a loss of control. This means communication professionals need to get even better at what they do, with new strategies, focus and skills with systems and processes that work. And, with a gentle evangelism, show that they bring value to the organization. Those disagreeing state that communication professionals are at a flexion point and that the changes affecting their organizations signal a need to remain in control of their professional activity, as well as for strong advocacy for the place of communications within the organization. IN THEIR WORDS … “…play in a much bigger game and for the bigger team” “We are the experts who are shaping the conversation and impacting the brand.” “We need to be in control… Never before have we needed to steer the conversation more.” “We need to professionalize to stay in control.” WHERE ARE WE? WHERE SHOULD WE BE? 9
  12. 12. Finally, we asked two specific questions on professional development: 1. IF YOU UNDERTOOK ANY PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT IN THE LAST 12 MONTHS, PLEASE INDICATE THE FOCUS/CATEGORY Fewer than 50% of respondents answered this question. Those who did generally report tactical communication training [speechwriting, writing, communication planning, media relations, branding], though there are a significant number of references to digital and social media training, coaching and mentoring, strategic thinking and planning. 2. IF YOU INTEND TO TAKE ANY PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT IN THE NEXT 12 MONTHS, PLEASE INDICATE THE FOCUS/CATEGORY Again, fewer than 50% of respondents gave an answer. The majority says they plan to take communication training of some kind, with several referencing social media or ‘new media’ training. The low response rate on these two questions may be important given the strong agreement concerning both the leadership role of the function and the level of change communication professionals are experiencing. IN THEIR WORDS … “It used to be that professional communicators were gatekeepers … and the emphasis was on word-crafting and ‘spin’. Today it’s about direct communication, transparency, authenticity and speed.” “We have to learn to collaborate.” “The role of the communication professional is changing to that of enabler, facilitator and coach.” “Professional skills are changing and management of communities and stories are more important than control of the message.” WHERE ARE WE? WHERE SHOULD WE BE? 10
  13. 13. CONCLUSIONS Our survey suggests four main conclusions: 1. COMMUNICATION PROFESSIONALS GENERALLY AGREE WITH THE CONCLUSIONS OF THE AUTHENTIC ENTERPRISE There is especially strong agreement that the communication function should be in the C- suite and play a leadership role on values, relationships, ‘new media’ and trust now and in the future. There is general agreement with all of the report’s recommendations, making The Authentic Enterprise an important reference point for communication professionals, especially in light of the following three conclusions. 2. THE COMMUNICATION FUNCTION HAS AN IMPORTANT LEADERSHIP ROLE TO PLAY, BUT WHEN AND HOW TO LEAD IS LESS CLEAR Five years after The Authentic Enterprise was published, only 60% of respondents say their function reports to the CEO. And, though they agreed that the function should play a leadership role on the four areas described above, the level of agreement on the specifics and additional comments in the open questions suggest communication professionals are still not clear on how exactly to assume this leadership. 3. WHAT COMMUNICATION PROFESSIONALS SAY THEY ASPIRE TO IN TERMS OF LEADERSHIP, AND WHAT THEY ARE DOING ARE NOT THE SAME The results and feedback on our survey are generally more positive than expected. It appears to us that communication professionals have moved well beyond the ‘nobody gets us’ complaint. But, there continues to be a lack of consistency about having the authority or taking the responsibility. According to many of those we surveyed, they are “at the table”; the question that remains is what to do now that they’re there. There is an underlying sense that even if (or maybe especially because) they’re “at the table”, or close to it, communication professionals feel that they shouldn’t need to keep demonstrating their value. It seems that they are not applying the same strategic communication thinking to themselves and their function as they would for their clients. Remarkably, there isn’t one comment that speaks to the need to mindfully practice what they preach in strategically positioning our function. It’s as if respondents expected to get “there” and for things to be static. Reality of course is very different. And, there is a feeling throughout that they are uncomfortable with leading [both having authority and taking responsibility]. Comments include things like, “The communication function isn’t really in the right function to lead”; “It’s not really our job”; “Isn’t it up to other functions (HR, IT, Finance, etc.) to take the lead while communications provides them with advice and support?”. WHERE ARE WE? WHERE SHOULD WE BE? 11
  14. 14. 4. THERE IS A DISCREPANCY BETWEEN WHAT COMMUNICATION PROFESSIONALS SAY THEY ASPIRE TO AND HOW THEY ARE INVESTING IN THEIR PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT As The Authentic Enterprise points out, and many respondents confirm, aspirations and expectations for the communication function have changed. Now, in addition to providing an important communication lens for organizations, communication professionals need to bring serious business and strategic thinking and a collaborative and facilitative orientation to the work they do. For professionals that have only recently emerged [or are still emerging] from seeing their ability to craft and control messages and target audiences as their primary value, this is a significant change. So, it is surprising to see the choices communication professionals are making for their professional development, if, as our low response rate to this question suggests, they are making any at all. WHERE ARE WE? WHERE SHOULD WE BE? 12
  15. 15. WHERE TO FROM HERE? Five years ago, The Authentic Enterprise concluded, “… our profession is in a strong position to succeed in the 21st century. [But n]one of the new roles described is currently the responsibility of an existing [communications] department. Our evolution as a function has prepared us well to take … [these roles, and]… success will require new approaches, deeper business knowledge, new skills, measurements we are ready for this moment.” But, today, five years later, our survey suggests that despite agreement with the direction and conclusions, communication professionals are not, and may not be, ready for a new expanded leadership role. A standout response in the open fields was: “Communication professionals need to feel and become empowered to define their professional future.” We couldn’t agree more and it seems to us that communication professionals now need to: 1. Demonstrate to their leaders and themselves that communications is not just a function it is a core strategic competence 2. Make the transition from the past to the future; that is: FROM TO Deep understanding of communication Deep understanding of the business and and how it works where and how communication can best support Siloed communication specialties A single integrated, strategic [internal, external, media, marketing, communication view – horizontal etc.] – vertical Transactional events Relationship builders Controlling Collaborative and facilitative 3. Ensure they are in a strong position to fulfill their aspirations for themselves, their function and their organizations Finally, we believe there is an important opportunity for communication professionals to engage in a further discussion and exploration with one another to discover practical approaches for advancing the profession. WHERE ARE WE? WHERE SHOULD WE BE? 13
  16. 16. ABOUT THE AUTHORS The authors are communication professionals who are passionate and curious about what communication professionals do, why, how they do it and how, as individuals and a profession, they can get better. Neil Griffiths is Director, Brand and Strategy, within SNC-Lavalin’s Global Corporate Communications team. Based in London, UK, Neil’s responsible for the ongoing development of the company’s brand and corporate identity and the strategic approach to communications. Neil sits on the board of IABC Europe/Middle East and supports the members in that region with their professional development. [www.linkedin.com/negriff] Deborah Hinton is Partner, Communication Strategy, Hinton : Communication matters in Montreal. She helps her clients create conditions for outstanding organizational performance and believes in the potential of organizations to deliver business results while creating great experiences for the people that work for them, and for the people and communities they serve. Deborah blogs regularly on communication and leadership. [www.hintonandco.com/blog and www.linkedin.com/in/deborahhinton] Disclaimer: Neither author was or is a member of the Arthur W. Page society and neither played any part in the research writing or promotion of The Authentic Enterprise. WHERE ARE WE? WHERE SHOULD WE BE? 14
  17. 17. APPENDIX 1 – THE SURVEY: INTRODUCTION, QUESTIONS AND RESULTS INTRODUCTION Thank you for taking the time to complete this survey. It should take you about 10 minutes to complete and your answers are completely anonymous. We’ll be using your input to paint a realistic picture of what is happening in the field, where you as a communication professional see yourself today and what you think about the future. We expect the results will lead to some important insight and practical recommendations for you as a professional and for the profession as a whole. This survey is inspired by The Authentic Enterprise, a report published by the Arthur W Page Society in 2007, based on “original research among CEOs, [their] own experience and a broad range of studies and perspectives”. Having reviewed dozens of reports, articles and white papers, we found it to be the most credible, insightful and provocative. Though intuitively appealing, we don’t believe anyone has ever tested the recommendations broadly with communication professionals to see how we think we’re doing and to better understand the implications for the profession and for you as a practitioner. We believe it is time. If you have any problems with the survey, if you have any questions, you’d like to receive a copy of the survey results or you’re interested in finding out how and where you can learn more, please contact Deborah Hinton at deb@hintonandco.com or Neil Griffiths at negriff@hotmail.com. QUESTIONS AND FINDINGS The questions and results are presented in the charts on the following page. WHERE ARE WE? WHERE SHOULD WE BE? 15
  18. 18. How are you doing? A survey of communication professionals 1. "The communications function has evolved significantly over the past three decades and is achieving increased stature within the corporation.” Response Response Percent Count Agree 79.4% 85 Disagree 20.6% 22 answered question 107 skipped question 0 2. If you agree, what is the evidence you see that demonstrates the function has increased stature (e.g. increased budget, seat at decision table, etc.)? If you disagree, what is the evidence you see that demonstrates the function’s stature is the same or diminished? Response Count 93 answered question 93 skipped question 14 1 of 17
  19. 19. 3. "The converging forces of technology, global integration, multiplying stakeholders and the resulting greater need for transparency are the most important communications challenges facing 21st century companies.” Do you agree that these are the top four most important challenges today? Response Response Percent Count Agree 78.2% 79 Disagree 21.8% 22 answered question 101 skipped question 6 4. If you agree, rank in order of priority? Rating Response 1 2 3 4 Average Count Technology 30.8% (24) 24.4% (19) 25.6% (20) 19.2% (15) 2.33 78 Global integration 10.3% (8) 17.9% (14) 26.9% (21) 44.9% (35) 3.06 78 Multiplying stakeholders 24.4% (19) 21.8% (17) 30.8% (24) 23.1% (18) 2.53 78 Transparency 34.6% (27) 35.9% (28) 16.7% (13) 12.8% (10) 2.08 78 answered question 78 skipped question 29 5. If you disagree, what would you say are the top four most important challenges today (in order of importance)? Response Count 20 answered question 20 skipped question 87 2 of 17
  20. 20. 6. What are the implications for the communication function? Response Count 20 answered question 20 skipped question 87 7. "We are no longer in control of our traditional spheres of professional activity. Indeed, all business functions are at the dawn of an era of radical de-professionalization.” Response Response Percent Count Agree 51.6% 47 Disagree 48.4% 44 answered question 91 skipped question 16 8. If you agree, what is the evidence you see that demonstrates we are no longer in control of our traditional spheres of professional activity? If you disagree, what evidence do you see that demonstrates we continue to be in control or are increasingly in control of our traditional spheres of professional activity? Response Count 74 answered question 74 skipped question 33 3 of 17
  21. 21. 9. What impact does this have on you in your role? Response Count 77 answered question 77 skipped question 30 10. "Communicators are uniquely positioned to become experts on the new art and science of organizational trust.” Response Response Percent Count Agree 70.1% 61 Disagree 29.9% 26 answered question 87 skipped question 20 11. If you agree, what is the evidence you see that demonstrates we are uniquely positioned to become experts on the new art and science of organizational trust? If you disagree, what evidence do you see that demonstrates we are not uniquely positioned? Response Count 76 answered question 76 skipped question 31 4 of 17
  22. 22. 12. What impact does this have on you in your role? Response Count 64 answered question 64 skipped question 43 13. "The Authentic Enterprise" concluded that the communication function should report directly to the CEO through a Chief Communication Officer. Do you agree or disagree? Response Response Percent Count Agree 90.9% 80 Disagree 9.1% 8 answered question 88 skipped question 19 14. In your organization (or those that you consult for), does the communication function report to the CEO? Response Response Percent Count Yes 60.2% 50 No 39.8% 33 answered question 83 skipped question 24 5 of 17
  23. 23. 15. If yes, is that person a member of the executive committee of the organization? If no, to whom does the function report? Response Count 69 answered question 69 skipped question 38 16. Do you agree that the communication function should play a leadership role today in these four areas – values, relationships, ‘new media' and trust? Response Response Percent Count Yes 90.6% 77 No 9.4% 8 answered question 85 skipped question 22 17. If no, what is there that shouldn’t be there and/or what is missing? Response Count 17 answered question 17 skipped question 90 6 of 17
  24. 24. 18. In your view are these four areas relevant to the future of communication? Response Response Percent Count Yes 90.6% 77 No 9.4% 8 answered question 85 skipped question 22 19. If no, what is there that shouldn’t be there and/or what is missing? Response Count 13 answered question 13 skipped question 94 20. Defining company values Response Response Percent Count Leader/facilitator? 57.3% 47 Follower? 42.7% 35 answered question 82 skipped question 25 7 of 17
  25. 25. 21. Why did you select this option? Do you see that changing in the future? If so, in what way? Response Count 69 answered question 69 skipped question 38 22. Instilling company values Response Response Percent Count Leader/facilitator? 74.7% 59 Follower? 25.3% 20 answered question 79 skipped question 28 23. Why did you select this option? Do you see that changing in the future? If so, in what way? Response Count 57 answered question 57 skipped question 50 8 of 17
  26. 26. 24. Building multi-stakeholder relationships Response Response Percent Count Leader/facilitator? 59.0% 46 Follower? 41.0% 32 answered question 78 skipped question 29 25. Why did you select this option? Do you see that changing in the future? If so, in what way? Response Count 55 answered question 55 skipped question 52 26. Managing multi-stakeholder relationships Response Response Percent Count Leader/facilitator? 62.7% 47 Follower? 37.3% 28 answered question 75 skipped question 32 9 of 17
  27. 27. 27. Why did you select this option? Do you see that changing in the future? If so, in what way? Response Count 43 answered question 43 skipped question 64 28. Enabling the enterprise with ‘new media’ skills Response Response Percent Count Leader/facilitator? 87.3% 69 Follower? 12.7% 10 answered question 79 skipped question 28 29. Why did you select this option? Do you see that changing in the future? If so, in what way? Response Count 55 answered question 55 skipped question 52 10 of 17
  28. 28. 30. Enabling the enterprise with ‘new media’ tools Response Response Percent Count Leader/facilitator? 84.0% 63 Follower? 16.0% 12 answered question 75 skipped question 32 31. Why did you select this option? Do you see that changing in the future? If so, in what way? Response Count 46 answered question 46 skipped question 61 32. Building trust in all its dimensions Response Response Percent Count Leader/facilitator? 61.5% 48 Follower? 38.5% 30 answered question 78 skipped question 29 11 of 17
  29. 29. 33. Why did you select this option? Do you see that changing in the future? If so, in what way? Response Count 55 answered question 55 skipped question 52 34. Managing trust in all its dimensions Response Response Percent Count Leader/facilitator? 57.1% 40 Follower? 42.9% 30 answered question 70 skipped question 37 35. Why did you select this option? Do you see that changing in the future? If so, in what way? Response Count 43 answered question 43 skipped question 64 12 of 17
  30. 30. 36. Type Response Response Percent Count Privately held 43.9% 25 Publicly held [traded on the stock 31.6% 18 market] Not-for-profit 12.3% 7 Public sector [government] 12.3% 7 Other (please specify) 10 answered question 57 skipped question 50 37. Size Response Response Percent Count < 25 employees 24.2% 16 25 – 100 10.6% 7 101 – 500 6.1% 4 501 – 1,000 3.0% 2 1,001 – 10,000 31.8% 21 > 10,000 24.2% 16 answered question 66 skipped question 41 13 of 17
  31. 31. 38. Years of experience in communication: Response Response Percent Count <5 2.5% 2 5 – 10 14.8% 12 > 10 82.7% 67 answered question 81 skipped question 26 39. Where you work: Response Response Percent Count In-house communication 57.3% 43 function Consultant 34.7% 26 Agency 8.0% 6 Other (please specify) 9 answered question 75 skipped question 32 14 of 17
  32. 32. 40. Primary area of focus: Response Response Percent Count Internal communication 42.6% 26 External communication 26.2% 16 Media relations 3.3% 2 Public relations [incl. community 11.5% 7 relations, CSR] Marketing communication 16.4% 10 Other (please specify) 32 answered question 61 skipped question 46 41. Level of education Response Response Percent Count Undergraduate degree 32.9% 27 Graduate studies 11.0% 9 Graduate degree 28.0% 23 Post-Graduate studies 28.0% 23 answered question 82 skipped question 25 15 of 17
  33. 33. 42. Area of academic specialization Response Count 67 answered question 67 skipped question 40 43. If you are a member of a professional association, please indicate which one(s): Response Count 57 answered question 57 skipped question 50 44. If you undertook any professional development in the last 12 months, please indicate the focus/category (e.g. writing, communication planning, social media, etc.). Response Count 50 answered question 50 skipped question 57 16 of 17
  34. 34. 45. If you intend to undertake any professional development in the next 12 months, please indicate the focus/category (e.g. writing, communication planning, social media, etc.). Response Count 49 answered question 49 skipped question 58 17 of 17
  35. 35. APPENDIX 2 – RESEARCH METHODOLOGY The survey opened and we began promotion on June 6, 2011 and closed July 12, 2011. We targeted communication professionals [self identified by the groups they belong to] over the five weeks of the survey, directly and indirectly through: • Hinton : blog post • Deborah and Neil’s – LinkedIn, Facebook, Google + and Twitter - networks • Direct emails to selected people in our networks • LinkedIn discussion groups o IABC International o IABC Europe o IABC UK o Comm Scrum [promo section] o C-suite communication o Communication professionals o Corporate Communication o Corporate Communication Centre o Employee Communications and engagement o IABC Montreal o Influence as Power o Internal communication o Institute of internal communication o Inside out o Public Relations & Communication professionals o Public Relations Professionals o The Holmes Report • Our professional contacts who forwarded links within their own networks. WHERE ARE WE? WHERE SHOULD WE BE? 33
  36. 36. APPENDIX 3 – THE SURVEY RESULTS AND THEIR “STATISTICAL SIGNIFICANCE” By Michael Hinton, MA, Managing Director Minerva’s Owl Consulting Economists Readers of surveys often ask: Are the results are “statistically significant?” but few, I imagine, know what “statistically significant” means. There are four points I have found in my experience as an economic consultant that non-statisticians need to know about “statistical significance.” Results are “statistically significant”, says statistician John W. Tukey if: “… the sample is large enough to ensure that if you took another … it would give [roughly] the same result …” Notice Tukey says “large”, he does not say a “large percentage.” What matters for statistical significance is the number of people surveyed not the percentage of whatever group they belong to. That is why opinion polls of size 1,000 are said to give highly statistically significant results for surveys intended to obtain the opinion of all members of the IABC [15,000], all Canadians [34.5 million] or all Americans [314 million]. Second, the other key characteristic of “statistically significant” results is that each person surveyed is equally likely to have been included in the study. Random samples are thought by statisticians to be good because they produce unbiased results. Since this survey is not a random sample of communication professionals, readers should be aware of bias introduced by self-selection and survey design. SELF-SELECTION OF RESPONDENTS. This bias is introduced by non-random factors that influenced people to respond to the survey. The three main factors in my opinion are whether the respondents: o were aware of the study o knew the authors and chose to support their study, and o had time to complete the survey. Of these I believe the third is the most likely to have biased the results. Most communication professionals are extremely busy and have little time to devote to responding to surveys. This being the case it is likely that some of the respondents were in a lull in their jobs or were “in transition” at the time of the survey. And, yet this does not mean the results are not valuable or important. What it does mean is that, the survey is not a reflection of the views of the average or typical communications professional; it is more likely the survey reflects the views of more experienced men and women, with a stronger interest in communications as a WHERE ARE WE? WHERE SHOULD WE BE? 34
  37. 37. profession, some of who are in some way ‘in transition’ or between consulting contracts. QUESTION DESIGN. Bias introduced by the design of the questions includes anything in the ordering and wording of questions that would introduce different ideas in the minds of different respondents. For example key words were employed without definition in the survey that different people I imagine would be likely to interpret differently. Words such as: facilitator, technology, tools, new media, etc. Third, the reader must be careful not to think “statistical significance” means something that it does not. It does not mean “important” although many people, many of whom should know better, often misuse it in this way. For example, economist and econometrician Professor Deirdre McCloskey writes “[r]oughly three-quarters of the contributors to the American Economic Review misuse the test of significance.” Significance does not mean “important” it means “consistent” or “a result similar to” what we got before and what we will get again if we did the survey all over again. Fourth, and most importantly, I would suggest, that in thinking about the results of this survey you should ask yourself not “Are the results “statistically significant”?” But rather, are the results important, interesting, or valuable? WHERE ARE WE? WHERE SHOULD WE BE? 35

×