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Business Communication: Untangling Its Identity Essay

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Title:Business communication: untangling its identity. (includes related article) (Section 3: Communication in Transition - From Art to Science)
Pub:Communication World
Detail:Moses Kanhai. 9.n2 (Feb 1992): pp22(3). (1330 words)  

Abstract:

Scientific research should be undertaken to help business communicators establish their identity and effectively assess their performance. There is much confusion on how PR practitioners view themselves and how they are viewed by others. The image of the public relations is clouded by the absence of a generally accepted definition of 'public relations.' There is also no clear distinction among different labels such as public affairs and public information. The close relationship between public relations and journalism is another factor that contributes to the confusion. A perfect definition of public relations may never come to being. Probably the best way for PR professionals to demonstrate their identity is to establish themselves as strategic communicators who are clearly distinct from mass communicators such as journalists, broadcasters and other public speakers.

Full Text:COPYRIGHT 1992 International Association of Business Communicators

I should clarify at this point that my use of the word "identity" refers to: 1. how we view ourselves, and 2. how other view us. And on both counts, there is considerable disagreement about what our profession is.

I will identify at least four major sources of confusion.

What is 'public relations,'

anyway?

Within this context, our relationship with "public relations," there continues to be the ongoing debate about differences between labels such as public relations, public affairs, public information and so on.

The debate spills into the relationship between the PR association and the business communication group.

The PR people appear convinced that theirs is an appropriate generic or umbrella label or function. They view communication as a...

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