Report: Communications leaders get C+ in 2019 report card

Despite plenty of data on a lack of two-way communication, decision-sharing, gender parity and other issues, the performance of many industry leaders hasn’t improved. The question is: Why?

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What makes a good communications leader—and how can leaders better serve their organizations?

The Plank Center at the University of Alabama has made it its mission to identify great leadership traits among PR professionals and gauge the industry’s performance over time. Its latest report card gives leaders a passing grade but reveals not much has changed regarding the field’s biggest problems.

Dr. Bruce Berger, co-investigator of this study and professor emeritus at the University of Alabama, says the findings were surprising, given that so much is known about leaders’ shortcomings. Why hasn’t progress been made on problems we’ve known about for years?

Berger explains that this report card came about after the Plank Center developed a survey to measure communications leaders in 2012. Researchers for that report talked to 4,500 pros in 23 countries to test a leadership model that underpins the center’s research. 

The report card measures:

This latest report card reveals that many see PR leadership as mediocre, with plenty of room for improvement. 

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