Public relations are a function of management. It involves monitoring and evaluating public attitudes and relating organizational policy and procedures to the interest of the community, to gain its understanding and acceptance.
Nature of Work
Work in this field is essentially in the nature of a consultancy and the implementation of a strategy to develop relationships with sections of the public, whose support and goodwill is necessary to the success of a venture. This could take many forms.
Major Tasks Performed
Internal communications involves management-employee interaction that could include compilation and editing of an in-house newsletter; organizing social and cultural gatherings to encourage management-staff contact outside of the work environment; direct communications like films, slide-shows or group discussions that explain reasons for the implementation of a new policy or system of functioning.
Involves initiating and maintaining contact with other organizations and bodies whose cooperation is required for the smooth flow of operations. These would include government departments; individuals involved in policy-making or administration; trade unions and other companies with whom interaction or negotiations might be necessary from time to time.
Is to do with arranging press conferences; issuing releases or statements; and in general keeping in
touch with members of the print and visual media, to ensure wider coverage of the organization's activities in order to remain constantly in the public eye.
Means compiling and distributing information about an organization, individual or scheme and also interacting with the public to answer any queries they might have.
Deal with consumer relations, taking care of problems regarding the availability or quality of a product or service.
FAIRS AND EXHIBITIONS
Organizing and participating in these events in order to keep the public aware and in touch with current activities and developments.
Involves the setting up and coordination of a range of activities from scholarships; television programmes; sports tournaments and cultural festivals to tree planting drives; area cleaning and beautification schemes; and welfare and development projects in urban and rural settings.
Could apply to a corporation; political party; or a national leader, a pop star or sports personality. It
involves the creation of a public identity. With regard to an organization, this would mean the projection of a `work culture' or philosophy.
For individuals it requires advising them on every aspect of personality from dress, hairstyle and deportment to public statements and appearances as well as controlled publicity of personal interests and activities.
Public relations is distinct from advertising in that while advertising aims for an immediate sale of a product, service or idea, public relations takes a more subtle approach, with a view to the long-term gains accruing from the generation of public goodwill.
Depending on the size and needs of the operation, some or all of these tasks may be handled by separate departments, a single individual or team, or an external agency.