A Momentous – and Dubious – AP Style Change

A Momentous – and Dubious – AP Style Change

The news first broke on March 18 in a tweet on the AP Stylebook Twitter feed:With this less-than-140-character announcement, the normally sound Associated Press Stylebook rocked the world of style and usage by sanctioning the hyphenless spelling of “email” in its online edition and made it further official in May with the inclusion of it in the new 2011 edition of its spiral-bound book.While many PR pros, journalists and writers may scratch their heads over what the big deal is about the ratification of this spelling – especially considering this has been the most common spelling for some time and that British English speakers have long used this spelling — this update is in fact a disappointing concession to people’s aversion to using hyphens and the speed-is-everything mindset that characterizes today’s writing. More to the point, this spelling is a travesty, and for this reason, I would like to take a moment to explain why the hyphen is so important in the spelling “e-mail” and help careful writers understand this distinction and make the best decision about this spelling going forward in the new era of AP-style-approved “email.”

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For the Love of Change

What drives change? Models on change and transformation suggest that it requires a cause – a critical reason why to change in the first place. This can be a less or more dramatic cause, commonly known as the sense of urgency, or the burning platform. Fair enough. Changing habits, patterns, beliefs and behaviors requires a lot of effort. So why the hassle if it wasn’t for a significant reason?  In reality this does not always seem to work out. Even the most dramatic situation – be it in personal or business life – does not necessarily get the change going. As change communication consultants, we usually address this kind of change resistance by reinforcing the cause; adjusting the cause story; spending time and effort on structuring the upcoming change process into goals, phases, and milestones; and creating toolkits and trainings for managers.

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The Cannes Effect

This summer, I’m serving as a guest commentator for the Holmes Report’s Think Tank blog and sharing my thoughts on a number of timely news issues. In my latest post, I offer some thoughts on how criticism of PR agencies’ showing at the recent Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity is a big fuss about nothing. I invite you to check out the full post here and let me know what you think.

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Is Time 'to Think' Valued?

Is Time 'to Think' Valued?

In my third post as a guest blogger for the PRWeek Insider blog this week, I share an experience that showed me the importance of including downtime in a busy schedule and the value downtime can offer in helping to be more focused and productive. I invite you to check out the full post here and let me know if you agree or have had a similar experience.

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For Women Only

For Women Only

This week, I’m a guest blogger for the PRWeek Insider blog and am sharing some perspectives on several PR topics that have been on my mind lately. In my second post, I talk about the challenge for women to more assertively manage their personal brand and become more vocal in the news for their industries. I invite you to read the full post here and share your thoughts with me.

 

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China Speed

China Speed

Earlier this year, Ketchum made a major move in its global expansion by increasing its investment in our Greater China operations to a majority position. And as one of the first of many steps to fully bring our China colleagues into the Ketchum family, we are now working to bring Ketchum University to China. To this end, I recently had the privilege of visiting our Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong offices to introduce our learning program, gather information from them on what they most need, and deliver Ketchum’s leadership development program to their senior staff.Three things stood out for me on this trip: the tremendous energy being generated by China’s rapid economic growth, the sense of the dizzying speed of change that its people have, and the strong desire to connect and integrate with the global community.

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Integration, 360, BAL . . . Is There an Easier Way to Slice the Pie?

Integration, 360, BAL . . . Is There an Easier Way to Slice the Pie?

This week, I’m blogging for the PRWeek Insider blog on several timely PR topics. My first post looks at integrating different agencies’ skills and services into one cohesive approach for a client campaign and the related challenges we sometimes experience. I invite you to read the full post here and share your experiences with me.

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Cannes Communiqué: And the Winner Is . . .

Cannes Communiqué: And the Winner Is . . .

Turnabout is fair play, they say, and I have to admit it was more than a little satisfying to be on the other side of client presentations for a change. As written earlier, Ketchum served as global sponsor for the Cannes Lions Young Marketers Competition, which saw two-person teams from client organizations from 17 countries competing to produce the perfect brief. Each team qualified by winning its national competitions, making Cannes something like the Olympics of marketing communications.The assignment was no walk on the beach. Each team was given two days to develop a concept for a new product or service its company could launch locally or internationally, with the profits to go to a fitting charitable cause. Then they had to write a two-page brief for a marketing communications agency, supplemented by a presentation not to exceed eight slides.

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Cannes Communiqué: Technology Is the New Creativity

Cannes Communiqué: Technology Is the New Creativity

This week, a Ketchum contingent is in attendance at the Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity in southern France, where the global marketing industry has gathered to celebrate what’s working, what’s coming and what’s hot in marketing communications. Here are some on-the-scene reports.While some may think that technology is transforming creativity, the panelists for today’s session on the subject argued that technology IS the new creativity. The premise will be truly realized by today’s youth, because kids grow up now surrounded completely by technology in almost every dimension of their lives.

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A Summer of Creativity

If there’s such a thing as right-brain boot camp, mine just spent a week there. Participating in PR brainstorms, cartooning my first-ever legitimate comic strip to convey a corporate business case, reaching out to students all over the globe to join Ketchum’s crowdsourcing site, Mindfire – these tasks demanded a  level of creativity that last summer’s lifeguarding job didn’t require. (I am, however, quite exceptional at coming up with pool games for eight-year-olds on the fly!)I’m a new intern at Ketchum working with the Innovation Group. As an English major, I come from an academic background that emphasizes analyzing the past work of masters — writers such as Austen, Flaubert and Hemingway. Recently, I was studying purely through rote memorization during a semester abroad in Tokyo (if you need to know all the prefectures of Japan or how to spell “cat” in hiragana [Japanese writing], feel free to drop me a line), so working in an environment that encourages “out of the box” creative thinking is an exciting transition for me.

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