5 tips for dealing with co-workers who think they know PR

Sometimes, colleagues in other departments overstep. Here’s how to politely tell them to back off.

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This article originally ran on PR Daily in February, 2015. What could be more helpful than your colleague suggesting you pitch that story, plan that stunt or issue that press release? That would be great if your colleague was a communications professional and not the IT guy, an HR exec or someone else who isn’t coming from a place of experience or savvy. Of course, it takes a village to raise brand awareness and good ideas come from all corners of an organization. Part of being a good communications leader is being able to listen to diverse opinions and mine for ideas from all likely and unlikely places, but we’ve all had to run interference on uninformed or misguided requests that come from people who think they know best, but in reality may not. Ill-fitting requests may even come from those who outrank you, and you’ll need to employ some diplomacy and clever maneuvering to come out on the other end unscathed.

Here are some of the top issues you may face, and some tips for how to address without risking damaging your relationships:

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