The Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) presented the Patrick Jackson Award for Distinguished Service to Abbie S. Fink of HMA Public Relations in Phoenix. The award is intended to recognize a PRSA member who has significantly contributed to advancing PRSA from the Chapter to National levels, as well as furthered the Society by inspiring fellow practitioners professionally and personally.
Achieving Exceptional Results
What do you think it takes to achieve exceptional results for your clients and organizations? There are things like working hard and paying attention to their needs that certainly top the list. But doesn’t that seem obvious?
For something to be truly exceptional, it needs to go beyond the obvious. That little extra something that sets you and your team apart from the others.
At a client event the other night, celebrating the transition of leadership from the founders to a new president and CEO, one of their clients pulled us aside to tell us how much they loved and appreciated Bob for all that he done for his family over the years. He shared stories of Bob’s visits to their family home, spending time with his kids and grandkids, really going above and beyond. Sure, anyone could have taken care of the client’s needs, but Bob believed that client service should be about relationships not transactions. And that’s how you get to exceptional results.
My first boss in the agency business used to say that public relations should really be called public relationships. Because after all, that’s what we are doing every day – building relationships between clients and their target audiences, between us and the media, between us and our colleagues, etc.
Here are a few more ideas to achieving exceptional results and I’d welcome your thoughts as well:
- Understanding of the objectives. It is not enough to just develop a plan but you’ve really got to take the time to understand the business objectives, why the client is doing what they’re doing and help them understand fully what role public relations can play in their success.
- Trust must be earned and it is kept through open and honest communication. And when your client trusts you, your team and the counsel you are providing, it opens up a wealth of opportunities for exceptional results.
- There is some truth to “no idea is a bad idea.” Some of the best campaigns come from your team’s ability to just be creative. Provide the time and space for creativity to happen. Give everyone a chance to express themselves. Imagine the possibilities!
- A willingness to take chances. Sometimes you’ve just got to go with your gut. Having the confidence to know that your idea is worth presenting and a willingness to put it all on the line. And a culture of support, both internally and with your clients, that taking chances is encouraged and supported.
- Stuff happens. Stuff we didn’t plan for. How we react to it is what matters.
About Abbie S. Fink, HMA Public Relations
Abbie S. Fink is vice president/general manager of HMA Public Relations in Phoenix, Ariz. HMA Public Relations is a full-service marketing communications agency whose experience encompasses work in the traditional marketing communications disciplines including public relations, traditional media relations and digital communications, marketing communications, issues management, community relations and special events. HMA Public Relations is also a founding member of the Public Relations Global Network (PRGN).