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Running head: Intro to Technical Writing of PR 1 The Novice Practitioners Introduction to the Technical Writing of Public Relations: An Exploration of the Recondite Principles Exhibited by Superfluous Scholastical Argot and Ostentatious Academia in the Composition of a Prolegomena Sean Alphin Radford University Intro to Technical Writing
  Running head: Intro to Technical Writing of PR 1 The Novice Practitioners Introduction to the Technical Writing of Public Relations: An Exploration of the Recondite Principles Exhibited by Superfluous Scholastical Argot and Ostentatious Academia in the Composition of a Prolegomena Sean Alphin Radford University  Intro to Technical Writing of PR 2 There are a considerable amount of varied definitions relating to public relations. The issue itself is one which is regularly debated on every side by authorities within the field due to their abundance. Nearly every notable figure in the field of public relations has published their own definition of public relations; which they believe most accurately exemplifies the primary focus of the discipline. According to the textbook, which was assigned concerning this course; the exemplar working definition of public relations is stated as being: A leadership management function that helps achieve organizational objectives, define  philosophy, and facilitate organizational changes. Public relations practitioners communicate with all relevant internal and external publics to develop positive relationships and to create consistency between organizational goals and societal expectations. Public relations practitioners develop, execute, and evaluate organizational  programs that promote the exchange of influence and understanding among an organization’s constituent  parts and publics. (Lattimore, Baskin, Heiman, & Toth, 2012,  p.4) However, this definition is by no means a clear and concise representation of public relations. Albeit a thorough definition, and besides that it does in-fact describe many of the various aspects involved in public relations. The following example demonstrates a much clearer, more concise, and easily understood definition of public relations. Public relations involves the realization of an organizations goals and objectives in congruence with proper application of the leadership management function.  Now with that stated, let’s  take a closer look at the component parts of this definition of public relations. The goals of an organization are the general direction in which the organization is headed. The organizations goal is the mission of the organization as outlined in its mission statement. The objectives of an organization are closely linked to the goals of the  Intro to Technical Writing of PR 3 organization with the exception that objectives are much more specific and determinable than goals (Lattimore et al., 2012). The leadership management function component of this definition involves cooperation with both internal and external publics. Furthermore, the leadership management function especially emphasizes the foundation of effective relationships and the maintenance of consistency between organizational goals and societal expectations (Lattimore et al., 2012). Before we can even start our discussion of the paradigms involved in public relations though. We first have to begin with defining what a paradigm actually is. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, a paradigm is defined as, “A pattern or model, an exemplar; (also) a typical instance of something, an example;” additionally, in the case of r  hetoric specifically,  paradigm is defined as, “A figure of speech in which a comparison is made by resemblance” . The rhetorical paradigm as it relates to public relations is not often thought very highly of by external publics. The typical response to mention of rhetoric that is in propinquity to public relations is often to worry about spin, misdirection, or misinformation being communicated one-way by the corporation. In 2000, Heath pointed out this problem with rhetoric in public relations when he stated; “ From its birth, public relations has been seen as a tool used largely by corporate managements to get their way, even if they have to lie and manipulate truth and motive ”  (pg. 70). What can be done by the practitioner of public relations to separate this highly stigmatizing and negative association regarding the rhetorical paradigm? In what way can we attempt to alter the external  publics’  pre-existing negative perceptions and try to create a positive shift away from this current view? The rhetorical paradigm of public relations relates to how we are able to go about ethically persuading someone of something. Being able to do this is one of the fundamental basis’ of public relations. Heath provides a possible solution to the problem when  Intro to Technical Writing of PR 4 he stated , “ What corrects the bad use of rhetoric? The good use of rhetoric. Note, that I said the good use of rhetoric, not the use of good rhetoric. That distinction is crucial, because rhetoric is a  process of suasory discourse that can be used for good or bad ends ” (Heath, 2000, pg. 72). It rests in the hands of the professional practitioner regarding the proper exercise of the rhetorical  perspective in public relations. Only through the consistently good practice of rhetoric will it be  possible to slowly alter the publics’ perception about public relations and the rhetorical  perspective. Through professionalism and ethical practice this negative perception can be changed. The rhetorical perspective is a very valuable tool when it is properly used and is not something we should just give up. The excellence/ symmetry perspective of public relations focuses on nine key characteristics of public relations including the levels of programs, departments and organizations. This model was first postulated by Grunig following a study of his that took place in 2002, which aimed at increasing the effectiveness of the organization overall. The study in this  journal was done by Andrea Schwarz and Alexander Fritsch and entitled, Communicating on  Behalf of Global Civil Society: Management and Coordination of Public Relations in  International Nongovernmental Organizations . The study at tempted to scale up from Grunigs’  previous study to examine the effects that differences in cultural and political landscapes of various regions and countries had on the organizations effectiveness and accomplishment of excellence in PR. The basis of the study was to determine how good of public relations  practitioners INGO ’s were  at both the central and local level. Four-hundred forty communication managers were surveyed for this study and asked about those nine generic principles of the excellence/ symmetry perspective. The conclusion of the study showed nearly , “two -thirds of respondents stated that their organizations cover all elements of strategic planning,
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