How I’m spending my summer vacation

I hope you’ve had a great summer so far. Myself, I’ve spent some time during my first month as CPRS National President reflecting on the many highlights of another successful national conference, Evolving Expectations. It was a truly informative and eye-opening look at our ever-evolving profession, so thanks again to everyone who worked hard this year to create another invaluable professional development and networking retreat for our delegates.

A few days after the Edmonton Conference I was whisked away to participate at the 26th International Public Relations Research Symposium (BledCom), at Lake Bled, Slovenia to present on the theme Trust and Reputation. While I was there, Canadian researcher Natalie Doyle Oldfield shared this profound insight transferable to almost everything we do. To paraphrase, she said, reputation is a measure of the past... trust is an indicator of future reputation. 

If reputation is a measurable outcome of trusting relationships, what can we as CPRS National do to manage relationships that foster an improvement in trust?  Trust makes our professional association more attractive and is a leading indicator of success.

We can look through the lens of what another BledCom speaker, Rupert Younger, described as an organization's 'capabilities' and 'character'. CPRS National will set out to support local Societies to excel and deliver on their capabilities of professional development, networking, career advancement and membership retention and recruitment.  All the while, CPRS National will build character by being responsive to local Societies, sharing knowledge through thought leadership, advocating for ethical public relations, enhancing our ethics offering, and restoring bilingual services and communications. All of this must be under-girded by the fundamentals of fiscal responsibility and a solid base. Our new Strategic Plan has mapped how CPRS National will strive to sharpen its capabilities and enhance its organizational character.

It’s going to be an exciting time for us at CPRS National as we achieve these goals. But before our schedules fill up again, now’s a great time to sharpen our skills. I suggest focusing on your PD by catching up on any webinars you may have missed, reliving the highlights of Evolving Expectations, or learning a few key insights from this year’s Major Award and Awards of Excellence recipients.
However you prepare, as president, I’m fortunate to be able to lead the Canadian Public Relations Society as it embarks on its new path. Together, with the help of the new board of directors and hundreds of incredible volunteers across the country, we’ll be working hard to realize our new vision and make ourselves more #CPRSproud than ever before.

Victor Vrsnik, MCM, APR, FCPRS
CPRS National President