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Tim:

And relationship building is a good foundation for when the organization needs to behave better in public. It's the better behavior that organizations are missing at a moment when their relationships are the most public. Educators are my heroes.

I've been a member of PRSA for many years, including president of my local chapter. I've heard many conversations and read many articles that stress relationships. I agree that it should be more, but the fact is that debates about what PR really is goes back to the 1920s when the term "public relations" was first employed regularly. There were press agents, who gave the field a bad name for stunts to get publicity, and there were people like Arthur Page who in 1927 was VP of PR for AT&T and stressed relational aspects. See the Page Center for more background. Also, you'd be happy to know that we educators--I've met many and there is ample agreement--stress relationships as we teach PR.

@Patricia -- it turns out common sense is not that common. A confluence of factors are over complicating and confusing the issue; technology and how we create with it, shifts in the way we work or how we collaborate, and opportunity entry points not being linear anymore. Good for another discussion.

@Rachel -- "this is the way we've always done things" coming from behind closed doors time and time over tends to teach people what to expect, alas. Right or wrong, it's a fact that many institutions have inherited too much bureaucracy built in other times and mushroomed unchallenged, while agility and collaboration are needed to thrive today. I shudder every time I need to contact a government office, often bracing for being worse off afterward. Not a good way to have a relationship, is it? Indeed, the global state and direction of education sadden me greatly.

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