Amy Newman is a Senior Lecturer of Management Communication at the School of Hotel Administration, Cornell SC Johnson College of Business. She teaches courses in business writing, persuasive communication, organizational behavior, and corporate communication. Professor Newman is the author of “Business Communication: In Person, In Print, Online” (Cengage, 10e) and “Building Leadership Character” (Sage, 2018). Prior to joining Cornell, she was an adjunct instructor at Ithaca College, eCornell, and Milano, The New School for Management and Urban Policy in New York City. Professor Newman spent most of her career in corporate positions and external consulting roles. Internally, she held management positions in human resources and leadership development. As an external consultant, she worked to improve employee performance and communication in hospitality, technology, education, publishing, financial services, and entertainment companies. Professor Newman has won grants to develop technology-based learning solutions as well as awards for teaching excellence and student advising. She is a director-at-large of the Association for Business Communication.
All enterprises are governed by numbers; most managers and clients use data every day. Public relations propels those numbers, making PR a business necessity rather than a nice-to-have enhancement. Communications professionals must therefore frame discussions around PR using business metrics developed through evidence-based plans, measurable evaluations, and calculated ROI. Students in this course will examine how "strategic PR" is all about crafting a precise plan to use public relations to achieve organizational goals.
In this course, you will learn that to be successful, you need to map out where your organization is headed in terms of business goals, how PR is going to help you get there, and who your audience is for your PR efforts. You will follow a recommended eight-step plan for building a communications strategy consisting of clearly articulated steps for creating an evidence-based approach to public relations that can help impact your organization's bottom line. By the end of this course, you will be able to devise, measure, and evaluate your PR strategy.
You always need public relations for one critical reason: PR drives sales. But do you have to hire an external PR agency? Can you afford it? How do you choose one? How do you compare requests for proposals from different agencies? And once you've hired an agency, how can you get the greatest value for your spend?
This course is designed to give people who are current or potential clients of external PR firms the skills they need to optimize their PR efforts. In this course, you will identify best practices for determining whether to use external resources, for vetting potential agencies, and for hiring and managing those agencies. As the client, you will always have a finite marketing budget, but you can use best practices to yield the greatest value from the portion of it that you're spending with an agency. You will discover a simple calculation to determine whether you can afford a PR firm now; and if you can't afford one now, you will identify concrete steps you can take towards that goal. Through this course, you will determine how to best leverage a PR agency.
A crisis can have a tremendous impact on the people involved and on an organization's performance and reputation, so it's important to communicate effectively in order to minimize negative consequences. Preparing for a crisis through the creation and ongoing analysis of a crisis communication plan can help minimize negative reactions and fallout. In this course, you will define crisis, paracrisis, and the goals of crisis communication. You will share your own experiences and practice identifying potential crises, creating a crisis communication plan, choosing a crisis communication team, and evaluating the plan.
A key component of preparing for a crisis is crafting messages for internal and external stakeholders. Messages must be quick, consistent, and open, and preparing initial statements ahead of time will help leaders and spokespersons communicate effectively during a crisis. You will examine the content of effective initial statements with the opportunity to review real-life examples, evaluating them for quality and success. You will practice addressing difficult questions and criticisms, exploring acceptable and graceful responses.
Once the crisis is over, it's important to review what worked well, what didn't, and to update the crisis communication plan for next time. Reflecting on a real life example, you will evaluate the response to the crisis and the crisis communication plan itself.