Embracing your true character in the world of PR - why discipline matters


Starting a business is a journey marked by growth and transformation, and as you evolve, so does the character you bring to the table. But in the realm of Public Relations (PR), there's one vital trait that is non-negotiable: client discipline.

Let's be honest; it can be a real challenge and resource drain when your PR constantly find ourselves chasing after clients to ensure punctuality, pursuing overdue invoices, and sifting through a maze of miscommunications. It's frustrating when we've put together a well-thought-out plan, only for last-minute changes to disrupt everything, seemingly without consideration for the ripple effect it can create.  Our role as PRs is to support your relationships with all stakeholders, and that requires a foundation of trust, honesty and discipline.

The reality is, honesty isn't always about looking pretty. It can manifest in various ways, like being a perpetual latecomer. But, in a strange way, this behaviour is an honest reflection of who the client is. At least at that point, your PR team knows what they're dealing with.

When we seek to engage with clients, we prioritise those who exhibit discipline as one of their core qualities. It's this discipline that holds the key to unlocking opportunities and opening doors that may have seemed closed in the past. Our reputation as an agency and individuals has been built on reliability, and it is built on our commitment to working with clients who are:

  • Responsible
  • Respectful
  • Professional
  • Excel in their areas of expertise
  • Display dynamism
  • Stay focused on their goals

PR work demands a unique blend of flexibility and integrity. While at the same time it requires us to adapt to changing circumstances, it also necessitates a level of integrity to craft and execute strategies that align with mutually agreed-upon Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). This synergy ensures that our clients are well-positioned to reach their objectives and achieve the maximum return on investment in PR.

I remember a situation where a client parted ways with us, and the reason behind it was rather unique. We were organising an event, and we were committed to starting it on time, a principle that formed a significant part of our promotional efforts. We believed in punctuality, encouraging attendees to purchase tickets in advance, arrive on time, and even providing information on public transportation schedules. It was all about respecting the entire audience's time.

In this particular instance, we faced a challenge when our client's friends were planning to attend a film screening but expected to arrive late. We tried to accommodate them by offering seats at the back of the theater, but they insisted on being in the VIP section, which happened to be situated in the middle of the theater. We explained that this would disrupt our commitment to punctuality and the overall experience for the audience.

Regrettably, the compromise was not acceptable to our clientm which was they would have to enter after the film had concluded, just before the Q&A session. As anticipated, his friends arrived 27 minutes into the screening. We had arranged for security to uphold the agreed punctuality policy and, as a result, they were denied entry. Unfortunately, this led to the client parting ways with our services. 

So, the question we pose is this:

It's a question that goes beyond your business or project; it delves into your character, your commitment, and your willingness to work hand-in-hand with your PR team. Your success  with your PR begins with the honesty and discipline you bring to the table, allowing your PR professionals to chart a course toward success with you.