OF PUBLIC RELATIONS
Chartered Institute of Public Relations: President’s Q2 2014 Report 2
CIPR PRESIDENT’S Q2 2014 REPORT
This is my second report as President of the CIPR. I committed to report to the
CIPR Board, Council, Groups and members, in this way at the end of each quarter.
WORK IN PROGRESS
Q2 has been characterised by a period of intense
activity leading to the Annual General Meeting
(AGM) in Manchester.
My aspiration for the CIPR in 2014 is to refocus the
organisation around its vision and core purpose,
as set out in our Royal Charter, as well as to shift
the organisation towards being networked and
Following discussions at Council CIPR that started
in November 2013, members were consulted on
draft changes to the organisation's constitution.
We were the first Chartered body to use a Twitter
chat and wiki to consult with members on our
governance. Members voted overwhelming in
favour of the changes at the AGM.
We will now seek approval for the changes from the
Privy Council. The work to implement the reforms
will continue throughout 2014 and 2015.
This year, for the first time since our foundation in
1948, we held our AGM outside London. We took
the opportunity of the Northern Conference to hold
our AGM in Manchester.
My thanks are due to the North West regional
group for organising the conference and hosting
the AGM. It was an excellent day that was well
received by delegates.
I hope that we will hold many of our future AGMs
Our future success lies in our members from regions,
nations, and sectors throughout the UK, supported
by light touch services and infrastructure from Russell
Square, London. We will continue to make investments
in 2014 and 2015 to deliver on this promise.
I maintain a week-by-week activity summary
on Pinterest. Please check this for further
information about initiatives highlighted in this
report. For information about the CIPR please
visit our web site and follow @CIPR_UK on
Twitter for regular updates from the Institute.
Chartered Institute of Public Relations: President’s Q2 2014 Report 3
KEY AREAS OF ACTIVITY AND PROGRESS
The CIPR published its Annual and Financial
Reports for 2013 in May 2014.
The headline recorded that the organisation
retained a surplus for the year of £189,774, taking
total reserves to £868,399 in line with its financial
objectives. Membership was up by 4 per cent,
and Continuing Professional Development (CPD)
completions up by 29 per cent.
At the AGM, Honorary Treasurer Dave Sanders
reported that the operational plan for 2014 and
2015 is to focus on the Institute’s core business,
with an emphasis on membership, qualifications
Commercial activities have been scaled back, and
staff numbers have been reduced to a level that
will deliver our key professional services.
We will continue to review our operations, make
modest increases in membership subscriptions
and some other fees, and work to expand our
markets with new business development capacity.
As the economic upturn continues to gather pace,
the CIPR will work to ensure that it is best placed to
take advantage of new opportunities, commercial
and otherwise, which present themselves over the
SIR STEPHEN TALLENTS,
AND DOUGLAS SMITH
The CIPR Excellence awards were a highlight of
Q2. More than 800 practitioners gathered at Old
Billingsgate, London on the banks of the River
Thames near Tower Bridge. It was the largest
Excellence event in recent years and the new
location was refreshing.
Thank you to all the entrants and judges. Thanks
are also due to the CIPR team for responding to the
organisational changes that we made at the outset
of the year and for delivering a superb event.
I was delighted to award the Sir Stephen Tallents
award for 2014 at the AGM to Sarah Hall in
recognition of her contribution to the CIPR.
Sarah has made a longstanding contribution to
the North East group, as well as the Board and
Council. As a member of the Board and Council
this year she has helped significantly to drive our
agenda on modernity, diversity and ethics.
I was also pleased to present the inaugural Douglas
Smith Award on behalf of the CIPR International
group to Jeremy Dickey from the University of
the Arts, London. The award is designed to help a
new generation of public relations professionals
showcase their talent.
Chartered PR Practitioner
Work reviewing the CIPR member journey
continues. A Board paper in June reviewed the
Chartered PR Practitioner accreditation.
I maintain that addressing our highest award is
critical to setting out our value to members and
the broader profession.
I have led a member-driven initiative with
Chartered PR Practitioners to negotiate a
publishing contract for an anthology of essays.
This will be published in 2015 to coincide with the
tenth anniversary of the Royal Charter.
We announced six new Fellows in May. This is
the highest membership grade and is awarded in
recognition of service to the CIPR or the broader
Please consider nominating those who you think are
worthy of recognition of this honour. The deadline
for the next round of nominations is 18 July 2014.
More than a third of our Fellows have contributed
to a consultation on the role of professionalism in
public relations. We will share the results at the
Fellows lunch on 25 July 2014.
Chartered Institute of Public Relations: President’s Q2 2014 Report 4
As part of my campaign for President for 2014 I set out a series of 10 Election Pledges. I have set out progress in each of these
areas in the next section.
01 COMMUNITY 02 CONFIDENCE 03 PROFESSIONALISM
Support, promote and celebrate the leadership
of the CIPR in the regions and nations by
providing a clear vision and purpose. Actively
engage the Council – the CIPR’s governing
body – and all its committees to represent the
membership and the profession. Modernise
the institutional model of the CIPR as a central
provider and start the shift to a member-run
and member-led networked organisation.
Assert the CIPR’s leadership nationally and
internationally in areas such as diversity,
social media, public affairs and internal
communication, ensuring that members have a
leadership voice in their relevant communities.
Recognise that the public relations industry
must shift from a craft to a profession by
putting Continuing Professional Development
(CPD) at its core. Set a roadmap to ensure
that CPD is recognised and seen as a key CIPR
• Members voted on changes to Governance at
AGM (June). Now seeking Privy Council approval.
• We are tackling an issue impacting the
public relations profession at each meeting
of the Council: engagement in April; and
reputation in June.
• New group finance reporting rolled out
under leadership of Honorary Treasurer
Dave Sanders. New manual and online video
material in progress.
• Laura Sutherland co-opted onto board at the
start of the year to help address the challenges
we face in Scotland this year.
• Recruitment underway for Scotland Policy
• Commitment for sector groups to deliver
initiatives in nations/regions agreed and
• Spoken at the following CIPR events in Q2:
webinar for CIPR International members;
the Northern Conference, Manchester; a
regional group meeting in Nottingham; and
the Excellence Awards in London. I was also
pleased to attend the CIPR Corporate
Financial group summer party.
• Represented CIPR, speaking at the following
events: Share This and Share That Too,
Entrepreneurs Forum, Darlington, Collision
Course, Gorkana; and World PR Forum,
• Confirmed to speak at six events during the
remainder of 2014 including: BledCom, Bled;
Silicon Beach, Bournemouth; the World PR
Forum, Madrid; and Upload, Lisbon.
• Governance changes embed the Code of
Conduct more clearly in our mission and
structures. Seeking Privy Council approval.
• Sarah Pinch continues with her work looking
at the reputation of the profession and has
developed a guided discussion document for
• Work beginning on scoping the development
of an enhanced CPD offer for mid-career and
• Work underway with Chartered PR
Practitioners to review, revise and republish
the 70+ skills guides, the CIPR Research,
Planning and Measurement Toolkit and the
Best Practice Guidance that supports the
Code of Conduct.
PROGRESS ON THE 10 PLEDGES
Chartered Institute of Public Relations: President’s Q2 2014 Report 5
04 EXCELLENCE 05 RELEVANCE 06 RELATIONSHIPS
Actively promote the Accredited Practitioner
and Chartered Practitioner schemes as a
benchmark for excellence to all members and
with their employers in all sectors, charity,
public and private, in-house and consultancy.
Ensure that these schemes continue to
resonate with employer and member needs.
Quantify the benefit of public relations to
the UK economy through a research initiative
to provide the industry with a confident
authoritative voice. Use data to assert the role
of public relations as a management discipline.
Further promote working relationships with
key national and international organisations
in advertising, digital, marketing and public
relations. Support the work of the CIPR diversity
group and actively engage with school and
college students, and the wider public, about
public relations as a profession that fully
represents the wider community it serves.
• Work underway to review the CIPR member
journey, in particular Chartered PR Practitioner
• Regular QA interviews with Chartered
PR Practitioners published on the CIPR
• Anthology of stage two Papers written by
Chartered PR Practitioners to be published
• The Professional Practices Committee
has modernised the structure for Code of
Conduct, Complaints and hearings.
• Published updated Wikipedia best practice
guidance for members and broader public
• Comment on Public Relations ranked in top 10
occupations of the future by Institute of Public
• Partnership with The National Institute of
Adult Continuing Education to promote
professional development in public relations
during Adult Learning week.
• Successful completion of government-funded
project into the communication of science led
by Past President Sue Wolstenholme. This will
lead to a new stream of work for the CIPR.
• Engagement with other PR associations:
AMEC and the Guild of Public Relations
• Supported AMEC initiative on social media
• Joined international manifesto to support
Wikipedia best practice.
PROGRESS ON THE 10 PLEDGES
Chartered Institute of Public Relations: President’s Q2 2014 Report 6
07 SOCIAL 08 LOBBY 09 TRANSPARENCY
Move the CIPR along the journey to becoming
a social organisation, putting content and
conversation at its core. Connect directly with
members and the broader industry through a
monthly Twitter discussion.
Seek swift resolution on the issue of the
registration of lobbyists and ensure that any
new statutory rules are fair and applicable to all
practitioners irrespective of role.
Promote the CIPR Code of Conduct and Ethical
standards in public relations. Ensure that the
CIPR is an open and transparent organisation
working in the public interest.
• Monthly #CIPRchat Twitter chats on
governance changes, and European Union
elections in Q1 2.14. Suggestions for future
topics such as welcomed.
• Rob Brown co-opted to Board to review
most effective means for engagement with
members via content. Report due Q3 2014.
• Plans in hand to build new members area on
CIPR website (late 2014 or early 2015) to
allow greater member-to-member interaction.
• Public affairs represented on the CIPR Board
and Council in 2014.
• New public affairs representative role agreed
for Scotland; work continues with the Scottish
Parliament on proposed Scottish register.
• Comment on the Labour Party's commitment
to repeal the Lobbying Act.
• Commitment to manage the CIPR Board and
Council in a transparent way.
• Answer all personal emails within 48 hours
and publish minutes of meetings with 24 hours
of them being signed off.
• Publish quarterly progress against plan.
PROGRESS ON THE 10 PLEDGES
Chartered Institute of Public Relations: President’s Q2 2014 Report 7
PROGRESS ON THE 10 PLEDGES
As I get the opportunity to travel around the country
I continue to be delighted by the energy and
motivation of volunteers from nations, regions and
sectors throughout the UK. I owe them all my thanks
for giving their time and energy to the CIPR.
My thanks are also due to members of the Council,
and in particular Past President Sue Wolstenholme,
Honorary Treasurer Dave Sanders, and President
Elect Sarah Pinch.
I would also like to recognise the drive and
motivation of the CIPR's CEO Alastair McCapra and
the team at the CIPR in responding to the changes
and the progress that we have delivered so far year.
Stephen Waddington MCIPR
30 June 2014
Displace Max Clifford as the mouthpiece of
the public relations industry and promote
the expertise of CIPR members to the
media, through social media and speaking
• Personal blog and columns in Communicate
and PR Week.
• Statements issues on Max Clifford, Labour
commitment to appeal the Lobbying Act (see
lobbying) and Tax Payers’ Alliance criticism of
NHS investment in public relations.
• Plan underway to develop and promote
a media directory of CIPR member
spokespeople for Q3 2014.