http://www.prsa.org/prjournal/Vol2No3/WilliamsDozier.pdf

Triangular Communications: The Who, Why and How  

I found this article interesting because I liked how the communicator would not only treats its publics as targets for planning but the managers as well. The Coorientation Model discussed in the article made sense to me because managers make decisions based on what they think they know about their publics, but often what managers think they know about what their publics want is the opposite of what is really true. This is where public relations kicks in with its commmuncation audits and directs their message to the managers and the publics so they have a better understanding of each other.

I was intrigued at the idea of doing something like a communications audit in a corporation. I’ve never done a lot of research projects, but I like the idea of going out and gathering information and then redirecting management to see what the people really want. The triangle model discussed in this article puts the public relations practioner in the middle man position. And it seems to me that the success of a corporation in making its publics happy relies on them.

I also liked how management was catergorized in two different ways: basic approvals or active input. By using the communication triangle, it would be easier to make mamagement more active because once information about their publics are put in front of them, questions can be posed like: How can we cater to this public? What changes can we make? How can we find out more information? I really like the idea of the communication triangle because in a way it makes me feel like the public relations practioner is almost higher then mananment. That without the practioners going out and finding out what the people really want, managment would make decisions based on their own opinions and it would be harder for the corporation to survive.

I also agreed with the article about that if managment is more involved in the decisions made, the communcation is more closely bonded, but when management was not included as a part of the “audience” the communication staff was ignored at time. This even applies to my job in retail. Managers a lot of times, just make a list of things for the lower people to do and say yes and no to small decisions. When a part time person comes up with a great idea that would benefit the customers, managers shrug it off. But they are not the ones out there selling and listening to what people are saying they need or want. If managers were out there with the part timers listening, it would make more sense to them on why they are not getting the sales that they want because they are not fulfilling the needs of the customers.

The same concept applies to larger corporations, like stated in this article, management needs to be brough down to the level and its workers. This way managers have more of an idea of how their decisions effect their public. If the communcation staff is able to not only address the public but management as well then there would be a more solid understanding of the publics and the decisions being made for them.

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