I’ve been away from MWL for a while now. I celebrated Christmas, began the instructional design of my spring 2009 classes, and actually got some much-needed rest. But as we approach the New Year, I feel like I should say something, anything, to mark the passage. Here goes…
Goodbye, good riddance.
We all know what 2008 was like. First, there was the dominating presidential election. The wars. The housing bubble bursting. The failing economy. The bailouts.
As interested as I am in politics, I even got sick of the presidential election. The election did bring closure to one thing, and that is the long, slow suicide of journalism.
Journalism is dead. It killed itself by cutting out its credibility. RIP New York Times, Washington Post, et al. Now what do I tell my highly ethical PR students about media relations, about building relationships with journalists? My PR students are steeped in the ethical and legal aspects of communication/public relations, including fairness and balance. They get it.
The failing economy heightened the need for communicators/public relations practitioners to understand the relevant topics of finance, economics, and business management, with an emphasis on employee communication. I’ve been preaching this for decades, but I believe that this financial crisis finally drove home the message.
I have seen a renewed effort by communicators/public relations practitioners to learn how to communicate about economic and financial issues in order to be more effective in representing their organizations with key publics. That makes me very happy indeed.
So much for 2008. There is more, of course, but let’s move on.
I love this time of the year. Out with the old, and in with the new. Rather than celebrate the New Year with noise and alcohol-induced reverie, I greet each New Year in quiet contemplation. I take a quick inventory of the year ending, then I think of all the promise the New Year holds.
I do not make a bold set of New Year’s Resolutions. Instead, I refine those goals that I have already set for myself, namely, to transform and evolve into a higher and better being here and now, mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually. That includes specifics of becoming a better communicator, teacher, friend, husband, father, grandfather, student, employee, and neighbor.
Onward and upward. I wish you the happiest and most prosperous of New Years. Thank you for reading MWL in 2008. I look forward to our dialogue in 2009.