The role of communicator shines bright during the pandemic

The Institute for Public Relations’ Tina McCorkindale lights the path with data-driven guidance. Here’s what the research says about efforts to start recovering from COVID-19.

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There’s an old saying in public relations that “PR is not ER.” While technically accurate, communicators are being increasingly viewed by the C-suite as essential frontline messengers of critical, often life-saving information for employees, and as safeguards of corporate reputation.

Nobody sees this more than Tina McCorkindale, president and CEO of the Institute for Public Relations (IPR), which has been providing the industry with fresh research that captures the ever-changing attitudes and behaviors of employees, corporate leaders, the media and consumers as we enter each new phase of this pandemic.

“This crisis really demonstrates how critically important communicators are to an organization,” says McCorkindale, who spoke to us in April from her home in Seattle.

With communicators now flooded with news, information and daily data dumps, IPR seeks to stand out from the pack with research and data-driven resources that shine a light both on what’s working—and  what’s not—in internal and external comms.

Some of the interesting findings from the research (from March and April 2020), much of which has been in partnership with PR firm Peppercomm, include:

“This is the first time on a global scale that something has impacted everyone in this world,” says McCorkindale.

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