At the Global Alliance’s Eighth World Public Relations Forum (WPRF) in Madrid, Spain, more than 800 public relations and communication professionals from 65 countries considered the theme of Communication with Conscience. The Forum was hosted by Dircom, the Spanish Communication Directors’ Association.
The Forum built on the Global Alliance’s work at the Seventh WPRF in Melbourne, Australia, where delegates adopted a new vision of a communicative organization, centred on the role of communication in defining organizational character and values, building a culture of listening and engagement, and instilling in organisations and individuals a sense of their responsibility to society.
In Madrid, delegates contributed their ideas about how public relations and communication professionals could be leaders not just in building communicative organisations, but also in contributing to their own societies. The following universal principles emerged from the dialogue:
- Public relations must aspire to a social purpose, serve social cohesion, and aim to bring communities together.
- Public relations can enable social integration by listening, identifying agendas, and creating shared narratives and safe places for dialogue around the social challenges of each society.
- Public relations professionals must take responsibility for identifying how they can serve their own societies.
- By realizing the power of communication, each public relations professional can be a leader. True leadership achieves personal, organizational and societal transformation.
- By reflecting on transformational leadership moments, our profession can learn to serve our organizations better, and by doing that, serve society better.
The Global Alliance pledges to continue the dialogue – and build on the momentum of Madrid – by capturing the stories of public relations professionals around the world as they aspire to contribute to their societies through communication.
The GA will capture the richness of these leadership experiences, curating them according to cultures, themes, geographies and challenges. This curation will tell the evolving story of leadership in public relations, to guide current and future leaders both inside and outside the profession.