In business terms, going into the new year 2009 feels a little different than its 2008 predecessor, what with the dreaded C-crunch and all that goes with it. But coming back to work last week I felt pretty optimistic - while 2009 seems to stretch a long way ahead in terms of the business trials and tribulations we're all going to be facing, there's lots we can do about it, and we've already been putting some of the wheels in motion.
This month, for example, sees the launch of our 'Smith & Smith Academy', where our PR execs get extra training around all sorts of issues. There'll be regular workshops for managers, too, with outside speakers coming in to help our team do their job even better. We feel that an 'academy' system will help us get the trained, professional, motivated staff we need for the future, with less churn and more in-house development and progression.
We're planning on opening some of the sessions out to clients and other people in our network. Watch this space! Client-side, the credit crunch means that we've been having some serious looks at how we can best add value to our clients, with PR helping them through challenging times. Internal communications is looking like more of an issue for a lot of organizations at the moment; ditto crisis management, which has long been one of our specialisms and which was already coming into its own over the last 18 months. Liz Jackson MBE, MD of Great Guns Marketing, has written an inspiring opinion piece in the January issue of Management Today, where she outlines some of the opportunities that present themselves during lean economic times and how innovation and team-building are more important than ever. "A united team with a common purpose, excited about what lies ahead, is invaluable," she says. So here's to a year of unity, purpose ... and excitement! By: Jane