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FleishmanHillard Named to 2020 PRNews CSR A-List for Eighth Consecutive Year

January 30, 2020

ST. LOUIS, January 30, 2020 — FleishmanHillard was named to the PRNews CSR Agency A-List for the eighth consecutive year. PRNews’ CSR Agency A-List, part of the 2020 CSR & Nonprofit Awards, consists of PR agencies that have established successful corporate social responsibility initiatives designed to communicate the importance of social good.

VOX Global, a FleishmanHillard specialty brand, also earned a spot on this year’s CSR Agency A-List.

The CSR & Nonprofit Awards program celebrates the companies and communicators working to improve the world through various initiatives and nonprofit partnerships.

CSR Agency A-List honorees and award winners will be recognized during a virtual ceremony on October 15.

View the full list of finalists and CSR Agency A-List winners here.


Honoring Chinese New Year

January 24, 2020
By Cheryl Pan

When I was little, Chinese New Year was my favorite time of the year. No school. Pretty new clothes. Late-night fireworks. Delicious snacks… My dad would dress the house with flashy red and gold decorations and my mum would cook us big meals with all the “auspicious dishes” like chicken and fish. It was always buzzy with greetings and visits with the relatives, and kids like me were usually most excited about the red packets, the “lucky money” in red envelopes, given by the elders.

It was not until I left home to study and work in different places that I realized Chinese New Year meant so much more. Being away from my family has made me appreciate this festival even more because it is the time for a reunion – like many others, on Chinese New Year’s Eve, I am anxious to hit the road to meet my family and join them for the once-in-a-year reunion dinner. During the feast, we celebrate the precious time of being together.

During the past eight years, I have found a lot of joy celebrating Chinese New Year here in Hong Kong, too. The FleishmanHillard and BlueCurrent family has been like a home away from home for me. The Hong Kong office has a good tradition of holding symbolic activities like the lion dance, giving Lai See (red packets in Cantonese), Hoi Nin Fan (lunch gathering to celebrate the start of the lunar new year), etc. I feel privileged to be working in an international company that respects the local culture and heritage where it operates.

FleishmanHillard and BlueCurrent Hong Kong teams celebrate Chinese New Year with Lion Dance tradition.

It is also interesting to see how Chinese New Year is celebrated around the world. My husband, before moving to Hong Kong, used to BBQ in his T-shirt in Australia where Chinese New Year falls in Summer. My relatives in the U.S. go to China Town for Yum Cha. My Chinese friends in Europe make dumplings and have hotpot, sometimes followed by board games.

Cheryl and her husband preparing for Chinese New Year.

Rich in traditions with thousands of years of history, Chinese New Year, thanks to ever-changing technology, is honored in some modern ways, too. For those I cannot meet physically, now I can give them red packets in e-cash through WeChat, wish them well via video calls or simply create funky personalized short videos and stickers and send them around as greetings.

Wherever you are, whatever you do, Chinese New Year is all about being together with your loved ones and welcoming a fresh start with wishes for all the great things. To those who celebrate it, may the new year be filled with health, success and happiness! Kung Hei Fat Choy!

Cheryl Pan is an account director based in our BlueCurrent Hong Kong office.  


Opportunity on the Mountain: Navigating #WEF20

January 23, 2020
By Michael Moroney

The annual World Economic Forum meeting, convened in Davos, Switzerland, provides more than 3,000 delegates – including titans of industry, NGOs and world leaders – a unique opportunity to discuss and find solutions to some of the most pressing, global socioeconomic and geopolitical issues of our time.

The “Authenticity in Action” report shows that three out of four consumers globally expect CEOs in particular to take a stand on issues that have an impact on the company’s customers (74%), products and services (72%) and employees (71%).

For 2020, the week-long Forum will focus on seven primary themes that impact society across business, government and culture.

  • Healthy Futures
  • How to Save the Planet
  • Tech for Good
  • Society & Future of Work
  • Beyond Geopolitics
  • Fairer Economics
  • Better Business

When President Trump announced that he would attend the Forum in 2018, many attendees began developing intricate contingency plans to account for added security and potential political fallout. However, given the already heightened security and plethora of world leaders in attendance, Trump’s visit was significantly less disruptive than anticipated. Of consequence, the President held a dinner with 15 global CEOs, and addressed the full hall with a speech that touted the U.S. as “open for business.”

Flanked by U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and U.S. trade negotiator Robert Lighthizer in his trip to the mountain this year, President Trump focused heavily on trade during his remarks.

Coming off the successful passage of the USMCA and the “Phase 1” trade deal with China, markets closely watched President Trump’s address – and Chinese Vice Premier Han Zheng’ s three hours later – for developments in trade relationships, as well as the President’s evolving approach to Europe. President Trump doubled down on his rhetoric Tuesday at a press conference, noting that he is serious about imposing tariffs on European automobiles if he can’t strike a trade agreement with the European Union.

With such a heavy focus on trade, and an “America First” agenda, the Administration held a number of high-level meetings with other world leaders. For companies and NGOs attending WEF, and meeting with government officials (from any country), here are a few questions to consider:

  • Can your organization justify the significant investment to stakeholders, and explain how attendance furthers your larger organizational objectives?
  • What is the likelihood that what you discuss in private meetings is reported in the media, and would you like the narrative it creates?
  • For any reports that you are launching at WEF, how can you give them news legs off the mountain?

In today’s politically tumultuous climate, a high-profile meeting with senior administration officials carries innate risks, however, also offers unique opportunities. It’s important for communications professionals to be able to provide a simple, concise answer tying these meetings back to organizational objectives, long-term vision and core values.


NetBase West Coast Tour

January 22, 2020

When: January 28, 2020 (San Francisco); January 29, 2020 (Seattle); January 30, 2020 (San Diego)

Where: San Francisco – Hotel Adagio, 550 Geary St, San Francisco, CA 94102; Seattle – Loews 1000 Hotel 1000 1st Ave, Seattle, WA 98104; San Diego – The Westgate Hotel 1055 2nd Ave, San Diego, CA 92101.

Register here for San Francisco, Seattle, and San Diego.

The NetBase West Coast Tour will discuss how brands can capitalize on artificial intelligence to drive business impact. Three speakers will share best practices to discover market and consumer insights with the power of technology.

Brian Mossop

Brian Mossop, a leader in FleishmanHillard’s Social and Innovation practice, will speak during the “Abandoning Vanity for Social Media Measurements with Real Business Value” session. Mossop will present four ways to use reliable, informative and impactful metrics to drive business results. With extensive expertise in social media analytics, Mossop will share how PR professionals can apply data analytics tools to a wide range of communications practices, including social crisis management and campaign tracking.

View the full agenda here.



FleishmanHillard Receives Perfect HRC Corporate Equality Index Score, Selected as a 2020 “Best Places to Work for LGBTQ Equality”

January 21, 2020

ST. LOUIS, January 21, 2020 — FleishmanHillard earned a perfect score of 100 on this year’s Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Corporate Equality Index (CEI) leading to the agency being named one of the 2020 “Best Places to Work for LGBTQ Equality.” The global firm joins the ranks of more than 680 major U.S. businesses that also earned top scores this year.

HRC Foundation conducts the annual CEI survey, the U.S.’ top benchmarking survey report on corporate policies and practices related to LGBTQ workplace equality, to identify companies offering inclusive policies and practices to employees who identify as LGBTQ. The CEI survey assesses companies on the following five broad categories: non-discrimination policies, employee benefits, organizational competency and accountability around LGBTQ diversity and inclusion, public commitment to LGBTQ equality, and responsible citizenship.

This marks the third consecutive year the global public relations firm received a perfect score resulting in an earned a spot on the “Best Places to Work for LGBTQ Equality” list. This recognition is a testament to the firm’s continued effort in making FleishmanHillard “the most inclusive global communications agency.”

“The impact of the Human Rights Campaign’s Corporate Equality Index over its 18-year history is profound. In this time, the corporate community has worked with us to adopt LGBTQ-inclusive policies, practices and benefits, establishing the Corporate Equality Index as a primary driving force for LGBTQ workplace inclusion in America and across the globe,” said HRC President Alphonso David.

View the complete list of 2020 top workplaces here.

FleishmanHillard is one of the HRC 2020 “Best Places to Work for LGBT Equality.”


Board Service: A Huge Need and Opportunity to Advance Inclusion

January 20, 2020

What can I do outside of my day-to-day work to fuel my ambition for social impact and inclusion? In my client work and through my involvement with FH4Inclusion, I felt like I was helping advance my clients’ purpose and the agency’s goal of making FleishmanHillard “the most inclusive global communications agency there is and nothing less.” But I was hungry to do more.

Only one-quarter of Americans take the time to volunteer, according to the latest survey results by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. And, according to the National Index of Nonprofit Board Practices, a number of nonprofits boards are looking for increased diversity, strategic thinking and a higher level of engagement in advocacy.

About a year ago, I met a like-minded social impact communicator who was part of the Net Impact San Francisco Chapter Leadership team (NISF) – an organization that strives to build and empower a network of professionals with the vision, connections and resources they need to drive positive social and environmental change. She knew about my interest and portfolio of work in social impact and inclusion and invited me to attend a couple networking and panel events organized by the chapter. After I attended a few events, I realized I wanted more from this experience and the timing was perfect. My contact reached out to me asking if I was interested in applying for a leadership position with the chapter.

The Net Impact San Francisco Professional Chapter organized an event at a local chocolate factory where participants toured the facilities and learned about the sustainable sourcing practices.

For almost a year now, I’ve served on the Net Impact San Francisco Professional Chapter Leadership team. During my time, I’ve leveraged my client service, communications and public relations skills to create a community of impact professionals. I’ve also organized events and programs that connect people in the area, allowing them to use business as a force for positive impact. In particular, I look for ways to advance inclusion by ensuring that our programs cover a wide range of topics beyond the environment and sustainability; and strive to create a space where individuals of varying backgrounds, industries, levels of expertise and perspectives can collaborate and unfold creative solutions to drive social and environmental challenges.

Here are a few of my favorite things about being part of this board:

  • No matter my age or experience, my perspective and hunger to make a difference are always welcome.
  • By bringing my professional skills to the board, I can expand my impact.
  • The opportunity to connect with passionate people who are leveraging their expertise to make a lasting impact in their backyard.
  • Learning and continuing to expand my skills, such as managing a social media account for an organization and learning to create mutually beneficial partnerships.

Maritza (right) with another Net Impact San Francisco Professional Chapter board member during a speed networking event.

There are many organizations around the world working to advance inclusion that are looking for board members. I encourage anyone who is interested to get involved, explore your passions and put your skills to use for good.

Maritza Rendon is a member of the Corporate Reputation and Social Impact teams in our San Francisco office and a global FH4Inclusion ambassador.


Creating Shared Value — In the Age of Stakeholder Capitalism

January 8, 2020

When: January 16, 2020, 8:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. HKT

Where: The Executive Centre, 43/F Champion Tower, Three Garden Road, Central, Hong Kong

Register here

president and senior partner, FleishmanHillard Greater China
Rachel Catanach

The Marketing Society‘s Creating Shared Value in the Age of Stakeholder Capitalism event will cover how businesses can effectively convey their brand purpose and impact to consumers and investors. Featuring simulation games and three industry leaders, the attendees will learn how organizations can make bolder decisions on creating shared value, while managing risks and reputation.

Rachel Catanach, president and senior partner, FleishmanHillard Greater China, will participate as one of the three speakers at the event. With deep expertise in global brand building, corporate and financial communications, Catanach has advised senior clients across sectors. She will discuss best practices in conveying corporate purposes to facilitate growth.

View a previous talk on technology advancement featuring Catanach here.


Don’t Let Data Become a Dirty Word

Technology, and the vast scores of data underpinning our every interaction and transaction, has unquestionably made our lives better, more efficient and more fulfilled.

Yet in recent years, the drawbacks have become glaringly evident, too. Privacy invasions. Misuse or outright theft of personal information. Security breaches. Our own data used to meddle in political and belief systems around the world.

As a direct consequence, privacy and security have rocketed up the consideration list.

Concerns increasingly impact the way consumers think, act and behave. Sixty-three percent now say that privacy concerns have made them less likely to use products and services from companies that use data for their own benefit.

And in this context, data security and privacy now top the list of issues consumers most want companies to take a stand on — ahead even of healthcare provision and protection of the environment.

But what to do? Where to start? And how to win? Security and privacy are issues that know no national boundaries. That metamorphose at breakneck speed. Whose origins often stem from bad actors or bad actions. And that are subject to increasing polarization, politicization and regulation.

In this complex environment, enlightened enterprises are seeing the direct link between long-term survival and robust reputations and brand integrity. Customers need complete trust in their ability to protect data. They need a plan, approach and strategy. They need both internal and external commitments to working with government, regulators, academia and each other. They need to behave in ethical, socially responsible ways. They need to not only do the most profitable thing, but do the right thing too.

Download FleishmanHillard’s Authenticity Gap Report from our dedicated report page here.


The Age of ‘Who?’ from a South Korean View

January 2, 2020
By Jena Kim