My wife and I had the pleasure of naming our first child in 2012. Like all parents, we wanted something different and unique that would personify our son. We chose Luca Salvatore. The name reflects my Italian heritage and Salvatore is the name of my grandfather. Luca is also one of the most popular names in Switzerland (where my wife and I met). To me, Luca sounds like a great sports name, and what sports fan father doesn’t hope to one day see his child succeed in athletic competition (just as Notre Dame football fans chanted “Rudy, Rudy, Rudy” in the film Rudy, I could imagine the crowd yelling “Luca, Luca, Luca”!)
This past year I had the pleasure of naming my non-human baby: my own company. The thought process was actually quite similar to naming my son. I wanted a name that would be unique and different. It should reflect my company’s values, services, heritage and aspirations. I also wanted a name in which I could tell a coherent story that would make sense to my targeted audience. I chose Experiential Communications as it represents the three pillars of my consultancy: teaching, education and strategic communications storytelling. Here’s the background and story.
Most university models financially reward teaching and research. Press visibility may be considered a bonus or contribution towards “good citizenship” (whatever that means), while some institutions don’t look highly upon those doing media work as it takes away from research (a mindset that desperately needs changing, in my opinion).
I have worked with many different types of professors over the years, and strongly believe that every faculty member and academic should be invested in external communications efforts. I am also of the belief that university systems should reward media visibility and a faculty member’s social media efforts (I am not naïve – I know this it is easier said than done). Here’s why I think this important for academics to be actively involved in external communications: Continue reading
Some 50 academics were asked if they had been trained to write for practitioner publications during a session at the Academy of Management in Orlando on Friday. Zero hands went up. At a similar session the next day, another 50 academics were asked if they had any friends or family members that didn’t understand their research. Every hand went up.
Academics in general have interesting thoughts and research to share with a relatively unbiased perspective (in comparison to spokespeople who work for companies or the government, for example). But often there is a language barrier involved. Summarizing a 40-page, nuanced academic research paper into a succinct, easy to read Op Ed, practitioner piece, blog and/or tweet can be challenging. Continue reading
Media Roundtable at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business – July 24, 2013
Experts and public relations professionals interested in building media relationships + a group of targeted journalists + good food and drink = successful media roundtable.
This above formula is a rather simplistic way to go about organizing a media roundtable. This past week at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business, we used this approach in hosting a roundtable for local media in the Raleigh Durham area. We featured three of the school’s entrepreneurship experts and 11 journalists from the top media outlets in the area attended the event. It was the second consecutive year in which we organized an informal media roundtable, and both times the feedback from journalists and our internal spokespeople was overwhelmingly positive. Here are some insights from my experience organizing local media roundtables, which might be helpful if you are ever planning to do something similar: