Newsletter | August 2013

Dear PRISA member,

This month’s newsletter is looking at the new PRISA membership card in our section Feedback from the Board. We profile our new APR, Ruth Mzaidume, in our Spotlight on APRs. In our Trend Section, Peter van der Schyff, writes to us about Business Ethics.


Feedback from the Board Back to Index

PRISA takes professionalism to the next level

In line with its ongoing efforts to enhance professionalism in the public relations and communication industry, the Public Relations Institute of Southern Africa (PRISA) has unveiled new, personalised membership cards, tailored to each member, designed to highlight your recognised designation and your commitment to professional, ethical conduct.

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Regional Feedback Back to Index
PRISA’s Eastern Cape Region hosted Debora Patta - Handling Media in Times of Crisis

Samkelwe Gqomo, a member from the Eastern Cape Regional Committee, writes about this media workshop at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, Conference Centre, Port Elizabeth.
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PRISA committed to environmental sustainability

PRISA has, over the past six months, embarked on a green journey as part of its commitment to reduce the organisation’s environmental footprint and costs by reducing its carbon emissions and increasing efficiency at its head office.

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Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Programmes Back to Index

This month PRISA presents the following workshops in Gauteng and Namibia:

Proofreading and editing for public relations professionals: August 12 – 13: Namibia
Experienced writers understand the importance of professional proofreading and quality editing. They also know the difficulty in detecting one’s own mistakes in texts. Frequently the difference between a good article that belongs in the top drawer and one that lands in an editor’s file 13 (recycle bin) is a few grammatical errors and spelling oversights.


Creative writing for the media: August 14 – 16: Namibia

Writing should be memorable, especially for the media. It must be purposeful, well planned and, most importantly, it should be creative. It goes without saying that possessing good writing skills is an essential tool for all communicators, yet it is often neglected. This is particularly true in South Africa where the majority of public relations professionals do not have English as their mother tongue.


Communication strategy: August 20: Randburg, Johannesburg
During this one-day workshop, we shall discuss the reasons why strategies, and specifically communication strategies, are not implemented. We shall review the classic principles of strategic planning before we apply these tried and tested principles to the fast moving communication environment we work in. Aimed predominantly at senior practitioners and communication managers, the focus will be on aligning the communication strategy, which is a functional strategy, with the business strategy.


Reputation management: August 23: Randburg, Johannesburg

Understanding and influencing a brand’s reputation is one of the basic tenets of effective public relations. At both organisational and individual levels, reputation management is crucial to guarantee not only success but survival in an increasingly interconnected corporate world. The strategic value of a good reputation cannot be underestimated. This one-day workshop is tailored for senior management and professionals, both in communication and line functions.


Government relations: August 26: Randburg, Johannesburg

‘Government relations’ is a strategic function that assists businesses to acknowledge government as an important stakeholder and regulatory influencer in as far as operational license and business growth. The strategic value of government relations is assisting businesses with insights in respect of influencing and lobbying public policy.


Protocol and etiquette: August 28: Randburg, Johannesburg

This is the basic premise for applying protocol and etiquette rules and guidelines correctly. By doing more than what is deemed essential in the right manner, you could enhance your brand tremendously. Conversely, by doing the wrong thing, often quite innocently, one could destroy brand value surprisingly fast.


To book for any of the above mentioned CPD workshops contact Ivonne Blom at

To view a list of all our programmes for the rest of 2013

Spotlight on APRs Back to Index

PRISA members who have achieved the Accredited in Public Relations (APR) designation, which is now fully recognised by the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) will definitely confirm that it is not as easy as it sounds.

In this month’s Spotlight on APRs, Vincent Maake talked to a recent graduate who joins the highest rank of public relations, Ruth Mzaidume.

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Public Relations Consultants' Chapter (PRCC) Corner Back to Index

Why evaluate public relations coverage and the role of measurement

Many public relations professionals do post-campaign evaluations of their activities in order to determine whether or not the planned objectives, strategies and tactics have been achieved.

At this stage it is useful to revisit the detail of the Barcelona Declaration of 2010 and briefly comment on the practicality of following the first globally accepted guideline of public relations measurement.

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MyPRISA Back to Index

Dante Mashile (MPMSA CPRP), Vice President Group Media Relations Africa, Group Marketing, Communication and Public Affairs, ABSA –shares with us what PRISA has meant to him in his professional career.

PRISA is a professional body that assisted me to be the respected and trusted practitioner that I am at this stage of my professional career.

I was exposed to the practice of strategic communication management through the professional development programmes that PRISA hosted. The association with PRISA provided me with the broader context of professional business communication and public relations management. The integration of South Africa to the rest of Africa heightened the role of communication management in both public and private sectors in the continent. I am of the view that this sense of continental approach has redefined my understanding of other markets beyond South Africa.

Since 1998, when I joined PRISA, I certainly became a more focused and trusted practitioner with my clients, organisations that I have worked for and ethically delivered on my responsibilities as an experienced practitioner.

Trends in Industry Back to Index
Business ethics – a new South African scourge - Peter van der Schyff CPRP

During the first week of July 2013, the Competition Commission announced that fifteen South African construction companies have agreed to pay fines, collectively totalling R1.46-billion, for collusive tendering practices. This was the outcome of intensive investigations into alleged collusive conduct in the construction of stadiums for the 2010 FIFA World Cup

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World Public Relations Forum Presentations Back to Index
Feature presentation – Coffee culture and sustainability at Illy:

One of the feature presentations at the 2012 World PR Forum in Melbourne was entitled: Coffee culture and sustainability at illycaffè: building a global brand around company values.

It was presented by Anna Adriani who, in her capacity as Global Public Relations and Corporate Responsibility Director at illycaffè, is in charge of corporate communication, media relations and internal communication globally and, in her role as Corporate Responsibility Director, co-ordinates all activities pertaining to stakeholder engagement and company sustainability. Adriani, presented a case study pertaining to illy, a family business based in Trieste at the edge of Italy’s northeast, that produces and markets high quality coffee which is available in more than 140 countries.

But what illy truly markets is an intangible world of values, behaviours and culture, built day after day by public relations professionals who build and maintain relationships with all illy’s stakeholders.
Retweet: - Reorienting public relations in the Asia-Pacific century:

This session presents highlights from the Inaugural WPRF Research Colloquium.

Facilitated by Marianne Sison, RMIT University and the panel comprising Kate Fitch, Murdoch University; Anne Gregory, Leeds Metropolitan University and Gregor Halff, Singapore Management University, will discuss the key questions communication practitioners need to reflect on as we move into the Asian century.

With global issues such as the environment, health, food security, and poverty, what knowledge and skills are required to work in changing media and communication contexts? What kind of research do we need to do? How can we enable practitioners and academics to work together for the future?

Solly’s Blog Back to Index
Talk to Solly this is your opportunity to share your views and opinions about YOUR PRISA with Solly.

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Until next month,
Adele Paulsen
PRISA: Executive director

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Compiled by Helena van Wyk