Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Campaigns is Officially Over!!!

My group officially finished our campaign this afternoon. We did our presentation to our clients and handed over out books. I would have to say that I am actually pretty surprised how well the presentation went. One of our clients was very surprised about some of our results, but seemed to at least respect us for the decisions we made regarding the campaign. This has truly been a frustrating experience, but I feel pretty happy with what we turned in. I think we probably deserve a low A or very high B on the presentation, but we'll probably end up with a mid to low B on the campaign book. There was just too much stuff that we had to throw together at the last minute. We weren't super organized and our roles in the group weren't very specific. That caused some issues because we all had random jobs all of the time instead of having a few set things that we had to do before the book should have been turned in.

Some things I would have liked to have done over:
1) Have a midpoint meeting with the clients just to run by what ideas we had thought up. We had to change some things at the last moment because we did not do enough research with the clients to find out if they had attempted these things before.

2) Better distribution of roles. Some people found out the information about a certain event, but then someone else would do the news release about it. That doesn't make much sense to me.

3) Wayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy more organization.

4) Wayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy more communication between the group.

This is a great thing to have learned though, and this kind of information will be very important to me when I get out into the job world. So to Dr. Russell, thanks for this opportunity. And to my group members, I had a great time getting to know y'all and I'm proud of how we came together at the end. It has been a pleasure. Until next time...

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Crisis Managment on

I'm sitting here writing a huge paper for a class I have Thursday and I check and what do I see??? An article about crisis management and its uses. If you read my blog (which is approximately 3 people or so...haha) you know that I did a few posts about the JetBlue thing. Once again, I thought they did a pretty darn good job. I think they took the "mortification" and "corrective action" approach according to Benoit's Image Restoration Theory. I think those are the best two that you could use. Also, they essentially used the "compensation" tactic as well by unveiling a "Customer Bill of Rights," which outlines ways they will compensate those who have been hurt or personally anguished by the airline. Nevertheless, I am really interested in crisis management. I like being in pressure situations and I feel like I could come up with some good ideas...especially since I am a really honest, upfront person. Obviously there would be some lawyer barking at me telling me not to be "too" honest, but whatever. In my opinion (as a future public relations practitioner), winning public opinion is much better for your organization then losing a court case. What is the point of being mum and losing or winning a court case if the public is going to hate you? I'd much rather one person hate me than millions. Don't you agree? Until next time...

Women's salaries still less than Men's salaries

This is a blog for the ladies out there. A study found that women make only 69% of what men do 10 years after graduation. That is ridiculous. In our graduate classes we hear about this all the time. I would say that every graduate class I have had, we have talked about the pay gap between men and women. It was really hard for me to comprehend at first that someone would get less money just based on their gender, especially since like 70% of PR students are female. For example, in my public relations campaigns course there are only 5 guys I believe. That class has at least 40-50 people in it. I think I am one of only three guys in our graduate PR program. Nevertheless, you might be asking what this has to do with public relations? Well if you read the last part of that article it says, "women expect less and negotiate less pay for themselves than do men." What I get from this is that women need to do PR for themselves when they get into salary negotiations. They need to be strong and unyielding and show that they deserve just the same as everyone else; male or female. Maybe that will start to show an evening out of the salary gap. I sure hope so. Really I do. I think everyone deserves what is rightfully theirs. Maybe I should leave this argument to women? I suppose it is just something that I believe in. Oh well. Until next time...

Friday, April 20, 2007

What have I learned in my PR Campaigns course? we go. I'm going to vent a bit. I believe the MOST IMPORTANT thing I have learned in my campaigns course is...the team makeup is EVERYTHING. Some people just don't work well together. In my PR Management course we read a chapter from Essentials in Management by Andrew J. Durbin entitled "Teams, groups, and teamwork." I recommend EVERYONE read it. There is a section that talks about the "roles for team and group members." They are listed and described as such:

Knowledge contributor - technically proficient, provides useful and valid information.
Process observer - observes how the group is functioning.
People supporter - provides emotional support and resolves conflict.
Challenger - confront and challenge bad ideas (or any ideas)
Listener - helps to summarize discussion and progress for the team.
Mediator - helps when issues between members move past the point of reconciliation.
Gatekeeper - makes sure all team members contribute equally.

First off, I am a challenger. I have no problems admitting that. I feel that if everyone agrees all the time on every idea, you are going to run into problems. When it comes down to it, not all ideas are smart or well thought of. They are IDEAS...not set in stone. In this particular campaign I feel as if I am probably the knowledge contributor as well. Will I always be...of course not. I am the knowledge contributor because of my background in music. I am in a group where I am the only one with a SERIOUS musical background. Some of the other members have played instruments through middle school and maybe through high school, but I have a bachelor's degree in Music Performance so I feel more comfortable. In our group we don't have someone that is purely a gatekeeper and that is something we needed more of. I'll just say that work was not given out evenly and there were plenty of solid reasons why that had to happen.

Campaigns has been a VERY VERY VERY VERY VERY frustrating course, but it has probably been my best and most realistic public relations course. To be honest, if PR is like this all the time...I probably won't retire being a practitioner. I take things pretty personally and I get super angry when people don't seem like they are pulling their weight or doing their job properly. To give you an example...I'm kind of "over" school. I just really want to get out. I am probably not putting as much effort into some of my classes as I should, but I do put all of my effort and more into these group projects...mainly because I don't want to screw someone else because of me. That's not fair to anyone. Anyway...we are going to make a C on our campaign, but it has been an amazing, honest, and educational experience. Until next time...

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Update on the University of Toledo points-shaving scandal

I recently had a post about a point-shaving scandal that was going on at the University of Toledo. Just a day or two ago, ESPN reported that the case had been dropped. HOWEVER, it has been dropped only so that the government attorneys will have more time to gather information and put together a stronger case. In my opinion, this doesn't look good for Toledo and their running back "Scooter" McDougle. The government seems to be really going after McDougle which probably means they have some information and they think they can find a whole lot more. From a PR perspective, I think Toledo needs to release another statement about the whole thing. I'm not sure if they should banish McDougle because when it comes down to it, McDougle was doing this WHILE in school. Right under Toledo's noses. That looks really bad on Toledo. Therefore, I'd probably release a statement saying that I would cooperate in any way I could and we are very upset that it made it this far. You would think that would cover all of their bases. Tell me what you think. Until next time...

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Athletic Success leads to Academic Integrity/Enrollment

(Dr. Sweetser you are going to LOVE this post...haha) I have stated many times that I felt that success in collegiate sports would help a university boost its academic enrollment. According to the University of Florida (it is the next to last bullet under the "extra points" section), after winning the National Championship in football the freshman applications rose 8% which was a record. I really feel as if you could see that kind of response from almost any school who is receiving a lot of press for something positive like that. Any type of big victory in a major sport (Football, Basketball, Baseball, Softball, etc) would probably get the same results. I would love to see the number of applications sent to UGA in 1978 vs. 1980-81-82. I really think you would probably see a greater number for those glory years of Georgia Football. Thinking about it, I'm sure UGA gets a ton of applications nevertheless because it is the states largest and most prominent university (Georgia Tech doesn't count because it is a tech school, not because I hate them...haha). Florida has UF, FSU, Miami, UCF, Florida International, USF, Florida Atlantic, and I'm sure other huge universities so that could play a factor. Anyway, I believe winning in sports is a HUGE boost for academic integrity for a school. The more people who want to go to your school, the more competition you have for spots, which means the higher quality of student you will admit. Until next time...

Friday, April 13, 2007

Saban isn't starting well at Bama

I'm back to my sports now. Anyway, Nick Saban is obviously a well respected coach. He took a pretty good LSU team and made them a national championship team. Left for the pros and did respectable (better than Spurrier at least). Anyway, now he is back at probably the second most revered college football school of all time, Alabama. Saban is also known as kind of a overly serious coach. He does things his own way and really doesn't care much about the media or anyone else. He just wants to win, and he does. Well, he hasn't had a chance to win at Bama yet and he is already making the media angry. As a PR student I would have to say that is a terrible idea. The media is already going to be all over you because you coach at Bama, and you are the highest paid coach in college football. Obviously, if he wins the media will back off. However, if the trend continues with Bama and they don't live up to the expectations (National Championship every other year, SEC Championship every year, you get the drift) the media is going to make his life miserable which will in turn hurt recruiting and put his job on the line. Needless to say, I'd be careful. I would say that the University of Georgia's football team has a pretty stiff media policy as well. If I'm not mistaken, the media can only be at practices for a little while and they can only talk to players/coaches on Tuesday. That's pretty stiff I'd say. I just don't think Saban is handling it very well. Let me know what you think. Until next time...