Posts Tagged ‘leadership’

Leading Through Change: A Roadmap for Navigating Uncertainty

Tuesday, November 7th, 2017

*By Pam Golden, President, GLA Communications

In life and in business, we often focus too much on the destination – where we are going – and forget to take the time to enjoy the journey. Elise Mitchell, Chairman of Mitchell Communications Group and CEO of Dentsu Aegis PR Network and author of Leading Through the Turn: How a Journey Mindset Can Help Leaders Find Success and Significance shared with attendees at the 2017 PRSA International Conference how she changed her approach to life and work and realized that the journey matters as much as the destination.

Photo Courtesy of PRSA

The first time I heard Elise talk about her journey was at a PRSA Counselors Academy Spring Conference and I came away inspired and motivated. This time was no different as there are few people I have met in business who are as willing to share as much as Elise.

A few years back, Elise asked herself: Is this all there is? She felt like something was missing and wondered if the destination was not worth reaching, what was she striving for? In pursuit of the destination, could she find the journey? For Elise, it was a motorcycle trip with her husband that helped her find her way and even inspired the title of her book.

One piece of advice that Elise offered was to “scrap the maps and go with the detours of life.” By doing so, you will find yourself in amazing destinations that can create new opportunities.  And of course, the journey can take different turns. In 2012, Elise sold her firm to Dentsu Aegis Network, which took her and her team on a different journey that included two restructurings in two years. As we all are aware, success is not promised. We have to work for it and have to stay the course.

Whether we are leaders of an agency, a company, a department or a team, the question Elise says we should be asking ourselves is:  “what matters most as a leader? What do I want to be known for?”  And the road is not always easy, so when the storm moves in, this is the most important time to take the helm.

Elise also reminds us that it is important to enjoy the ride – so we should find the off switch and live a whole life. She encouraged us to invest in ourselves because if you don’t there won’t be anything for anyone else and because it is the people who matter most since relationships are the greatest gifts we have.

*Pam Golden is president of GLA Communications which she founded in 1986.  Her expertise has helped fuel many successful communications campaigns including the launch of home satellite TV, DVD and HDTV. Pam provides high-level strategic and tactical counsel to GLA’s clients, bringing the benefit of more than 30 years of experience in creating and executing effective campaigns that deliver results. Pam is an active member of the Public Relations Society of America and serves on the executive committee for its Counselors Academy sector, where she is also chair of the programming committee. In April 2017, Pam was named as a finalist in the Leading Women Entrepreneurs “Brand Builders” category, which celebrates communications professionals who excel in brand innovation.

2012 Counselors Academy Conference Keynote – Groovin’ to Your Own Beat: How to Build Your Business by Merging Your Personal and Professional Selves

Tuesday, May 15th, 2012

Colleen Flood*

The 2012 Counselors Academy kicked off on Sunday, May 6, 2012. The evening’s keynote session featured Jay Baer, president of Convince and Convert, and Gini Dietrich, CEO of Arment Dietrich. The duo asserted that “it’s difficult to tell a client they need to be using the Web if an agency principal doesn’t believe it themselves.”

How to Build Your Personal Brand into Your Professional Brand
During the session, Baer and Dietrich discussed “how revenue follows capabilities and capabilities follow beliefs” and presented agency leaders with best practices to “finally ‘get off their duffs and start becoming social’ in order to build their businesses.”

Here are some key takeaways from the presentation:

  • If an agency has several employees, why not tweet under the agency name?
  • Videos create a human being behind the brand. We remember personal stories and want to do business with the people we know.
  • Network – social media connects you with people you cannot connect with in 3D and helps with national recognition.
  • Agencies need to spend time on leadership campaigns (e.g., blog posts). Tech has made us all self-servers of information and we want to find the answers ourselves when it’s time.
  • Can a junior staffer handle social media? Social media is not something you should delegate and you can’t outsource your voice.
  • People will remember your “branding.” So, give away what you know. Remember, “giving away a list of ingredients doesn’t make you a chef.”
  • Figure out your circles. Listen and find opportunities to be helpful. The best way to be helpful is to setup searches. People buy from people they like and trust. Your client wants to work with you!
  • Commit to social media regularly – say, 20 minutes a day – and fill in the “tiny gaps in your day.”
  • How do you measure social media success? Understand how it pays off in terms of leads, new business, and client retention. Listen. Assess the conversation. Engage. Measure and then improve.

The audience also had the opportunity to ask a few questions. One question focused on “what PR firms should stop doing and start implementing instead.” The answer? Stop chasing the hot new thing and start having policies in place for brand ambassadors.

How are you “groovin’ to your own beat” and “merging your personal and professionals selves to build your business?”


*Bio: Colleen Flood has been a sales consultant with BurrellesLuce for over 12 years and is eager to become a more integrated part of the social-public relations community. She primarily handles agency relations in the New York and New Jersey metro-area. She is not only passionate about work, but also about family, friends, and the Jersey Shore. Twitter: @cgflood LinkedIn: Colleen Flood Facebook: BurrellesLuce 

Tough Talks, Insights for Creating a Win-Win-Win: Alan Cohen, Acts of Balance, Interview With Johna Burke, BurrellesLuce, at the 2011 Counselors Academy

Friday, September 23rd, 2011

Transcript –

JOHNA BURKE: Hello, this is Johna Burke with BurrellesLuce, and we’re here at Counselors Academy. We’re joined by Alan.

Alan, will you please introduce yourself?

ALAN COHEN: Absolutely. My name’s Alan Cohen, and I’m president of Acts of Balance Executive Coaching and Training based out of New York City. And I work with public relations executives and PR firms to help develop more effective leaders, and I work a lot with communications skills and team-building.

BURKE: Great. Alan, you did a session on tough conversations for PR practitioners and agency owners here. Can you give us a couple of your insights as far as how people can set up and then have those tough conversations?

COHEN: Absolutely. One of the most common things that I see in my practice is people really avoiding having those tough talks. And in avoiding them, they actually make the situation even bigger and more volatile. We largely like to be people pleasers, and so we avoid having the conversations that may be unpleasant, may provoke some strong emotions. But what I do is really help develop people to think, to plan in advance, to go through a multistep process to really think about how they’re interpreting the situation, to really align their values with having the conversation and to really, really plan it out so that the conversation will develop into a real win-win-win; a win for the individual having the talk, the–a win for the person who’s being spoken to, and really a win for the relationship overall. It’s really about a collaboration. So as leaders, we need to have the courage to have the difficult conversations. And leadership is not always easy, but it’s important that we stay in integrity by really addressing the situations that are causing us discomfort.

BURKE: Alan, thank you so much. Where can people connect with you online and in social media?

COHEN: I’m at, and my Twitter handle is actsofbalance.

Or you can join my Facebook fan page, also Acts of Balance.

BURKE: Thank you so much, Alan.

COHEN: Thank you.

PR Week Measurement Roundtable Q&A Takeaways

Thursday, July 7th, 2011

Valerie Simon

Questions And AnswersOn Wednesday, May 4th, I had the opportunity to attend the PR Week Measurement Roundtable, along with some of my BurrellesLuce colleagues.

The roundtable focused on the constantly evolving role of measurement in the PR industry. Bernadette Casey, senior editor at PR Week, and Johna Burke, SVP of marketing here at BurrellesLuce, hosted the event. The breakfast provided attendees the opportunity to network with more than 25 senior leaders in measurement and featured a Q&A with Jason Forget, corporate reputation manager for GE Energy, among BurrellesLuce clients and friends.

In a quest to become a “gold standard communicator,” measurement is a key component of PR and marketing activity. In fact, 70 percent of the day at GE Energy is spent doing media monitoring and analysis.


Truths for Effective Leadership from the PRSA Counselors Academy

Monday, June 27th, 2011

Colleen Flood*

On Friday, May 13, I had the pleasure of attending the session, 20/20 Hindsight: Timeless Truths for Effective Leadership lead by Mimi Meredith, Goodness Grows, at the annual PRSA Counselors Academy.

Everyone makes mistakes – particularly when it comes to building and forging relationships. These can be any sort of relationship, but it is equally true for PR and communications professionals looking to connect with their business associates and audiences, as well as great leaders.

Obstacles to Great Leadership

  • Assumptions
  • What you understand
  • Who you understand

Often when building relationships we allow our assumptions to get in the way. We self-project on individuals (“I think therefore you are”). This saves us time, but we never really get to know people. Since we were children we were told to “treat others they way we want to be treated” and it has become the platinum rule for business and employee engagement.

Great leaders don’t equate understanding with agreement. They speak to be understood.  They learn by assessing what people already understand, limit by taking the ‘me’ or unnecessary information out of the conversation, look by checking out body language and test to see if you are getting through by asking “what do you think?” or “what are your takeaways?”

Great leaders don’t treat employees like they themselves want to be treated. They move beyond preconceptions of people. In essence, great leaders allow people to be beyond what we label them.

What do you see as being some the obstacles of great leadership? And how do you suggest moving past them? Please share your thoughts with me and the readers of BurrellesLuce Fresh Ideas.


*Bio: Colleen Flood has been a sales consultant with BurrellesLuce for over 12 years and is eager to become a more integrated part of the social-public relations community. She primarily handles agency relations in the New York and New Jersey metro-area. She is not only passionate about work, but also about family, friends, and the Jersey Shore. Twitter: @cgflood LinkedIn: Colleen Flood Facebook: BurrellesLuce