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FleishmanHillard UK awarded Best Annual Report at PRCA City and Financial Awards 2022

February 28, 2022

FleishmanHillard has been awarded the coveted trophy for ‘Best Annual Report’ at the PRCA City & Financial Awards 2022 for its annual report for client Barclays! The City and Financial PR Awards are held by the PRCA in support of the City of London Company of Public Relations Practitioners. The Awards recognise the talent and impact of individuals, […]

The post FleishmanHillard UK awarded Best Annual Report at PRCA City and Financial Awards 2022 appeared first on United Kingdom.

Article

FleishmanHillard HighRoad’s Mubashira Farooqi Awarded Inaugural Young Changemaker Award by PRovoke Media

February 24, 2022

ST. LOUIS, February 24, 2022 – FleishmanHillard HighRoad’s Mubashira Farooqi earned the inaugural Young Changemakers award at this year’s IN2 SABRE Awards in North America, presented by PRovoke Media.

The Young Changemakers award recognizes the next generation of communications leaders, helping to launch careers and create better equity and opportunities for those in marginalized groups.

Farooqi won the judges over with her passion for advocating on behalf of women of color and encouraging diversity within the global PR industry. Outside of the office, Farooqi hosts her own podcast, which aims to amplify the voices of women of color within the communications industry.

Read more about Mubashira Farooqi and this honor here

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FleishmanHillard’s Ephraim Cohen Recognized for Innovation, Lands Spot on Coveted PRWeek Dashboard 25 List

ST. LOUIS, February 24, 2022 – FleishmanHillard’s Ephraim Cohen has been named to this year’s PRWeek Dashboard 25 list. This honor celebrates innovative communicators who are driving the public relations industry forward.

Cohen is the agency’s first global managing director of Media + Platforms, a practice he helped establish while leading as the general manager for FleishmanHillard’s New York office. Media + Platforms integrates the agency’s earned and owned media expertise with digital platform technologies – deepening the precision of its storytelling capabilities.

Outside of the office, Cohen is heavily involved with the Arthur W. Page Society, co-chairing its Northeast gatherings of Page Society and Page Up, which seek to advance the communications profession by providing development and networking resources to the next generation of professionals. Cohen has also repeatedly traveled to Qatar to host Northwestern University students and teach in the executive communications education program. Cohen continues to inspire colleagues across the firm and industry with his passion for advancing the public relations field.

Read more from PRWeek and view the Dashboard 25 – Class of 2022 list here.  

Article

Three Trends Guiding ESG Communications in 2022

February 22, 2022
By Judith Rowland

As we approach the midpoint of Q1, many brands are starting to execute on their ESG agendas for 2022. More than ever before, stakeholders are seeing ESG as a business practice key to profit and reputation. As the stakes for ESG continue to rise, here are three trends for communications professionals to keep in mind.

As Brands Rush to Net-Zero Commitments, Accountability Remains a Priority

Over 200 companies have pledged to reach net-zero emissions by 2040, including nearly 90 companies who set new targets timed with Climate Week in September 2021. Similarly, while a focus on regenerative agriculture used to be limited to the start-up community, many big-name brands are following the lead of Certified B Corp companies in committing to new ways of farming. Following a recent U.N. panel that U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres called a “code red for humanity,” brands seem to be racing to get in line to tout their commitment to reaching a sustainable future.

However, many pundits left COP26 in Glasgow frustrated, believing that without an accountability framework, pledges will be difficult to measure and may prevent stakeholders from holding brands to account for their ESG commitments. Limited transparency and an overreliance on carbon offsets may prevent us from reaching the targets necessary to avert catastrophe. As GreenBiz chairman and co-founder Joel Makower argued last year, “Given the lack of policy or standardized guidance driving net-zero commitments, not to mention the loopholes through which many companies seem to be leaping, there’s pretty much a net-zero chance that they will, collectively, meet the goals of the 2015 Paris Agreement — at least, not without some significant changes.” Communications leaders can buck potential criticism and accusations of greenwashing by pairing their ESG goal messages with a roadmap for how they’ll reach their targets and by clearly defining what concepts – like regenerative agriculture – mean to them.

Anticipated SEC ESG Disclosure Requirements will Mandate Transparency  

Following the lead of the European Union, the SEC is preparing to release new disclosure requirements that will require publicly traded companies to openly share their progress on environmental and social initiatives. While the details behind the SEC proposals are still under development, brands will need to ensure reporting across all communications channels is consistent and allows stakeholders to quantitatively compare the ESG performance of disparate companies. Noting that the disclosure requirements for climate change are rumored to come first, sectors with large carbon footprints – including the food and agriculture sector – may be forced to serve as a guinea pig.

Once enacted, the disclosure requirements will likely up the ante on expectations investors and other stakeholders have for ESG performance. Getting ahead of this and building transparency into 2022 ESG communications plans is a key opportunity that could allow brands to take a leadership position. On the other hand, waiting for the disclosure requirements to be announced will push brands into a reactive position wherein it is unlikely they’ll get credit for the steps they’re taking to become more transparent.

With Pressure to Account for Scope 3 Emissions Intensifying, Industry Stakeholders Need to Collaborate on ESG

In late January, the California state Senate passed a bill that would require corporations with more than $1 billion in annual revenue to disclose all scopes of their greenhouse gas emissions to the California Secretary of State’s office. The bill emphasizes the importance of acknowledging a full emissions footprint, including Scope 3 emissions, which represent emissions associated with value chains and the consumer use of a product.

As taking a more holistic look at emissions through the supply chain become de rigueur, industries with extensive, global value chains – such as the food and agriculture sector – will face the greatest challenges. With large grocery retailers pledging to slash the greenhouse gas emissions in their supply chains, producers are feeling heightened pressure to get their emissions in order. Communications leaders should view supply chain partners as a key audience and ensure they’re taking steps to support suppliers as they work toward their ESG commitments.

It is critically important that the business community work together to achieve climate goals. Stakeholders in each sector must see each other as partners in promoting environmental impact. Vilifying entire industries is not a helpful tactic and takes energy away from the positive actions required to avoid the disastrous effects of climate change. Within the agriculture industry, leveraging new innovations and proven techniques will be vital to meet global food security and protein needs while protecting our shared planet.

It is safe to say that 2022 will be a landmark year for ESG communications. Approaching these new demands for accountability, transparency and engagement through the supply chain provides a strategic communications opportunity – and a business opportunity – for companies and brands.

Article

Celebrating Intersectionality Within the Black Identity

February 18, 2022

Classification of race and ethnicity is usually generalized to the following categories: Black, Asian, Hispanic, American Indians and White. When you’re biracial, these checklist groups are just a tiny fraction of the daily struggles you’ll encounter. Biracial individuals often feel part of both of their cultures and so are always asking themselves, “Am I enough?” In this piece, Popoai Tanuvasa-Lole, Alfred Fleishman Diversity Fellow, shares her perspective on being biracial in America.

Myth of the Monolith

Honestly, I didn’t think much about race growing up. I was one of two Black kids in my entire school, everyone else was white. Don’t get me wrong, it was very clear to me that I was different. But I didn’t really have an opinion on what I was and what I wasn’t. I was okay with operating in that default “other” category.

Right now, and this may change, I identify as a mixed-race Black person. When I went to college, it really changed how I was able to identify with being Black. Although Maryville University is a predominantly white institution (PWI), I’d never been in a place where there were so many Black people that looked so many different ways and sat in so many different intersections of the Black identity and life. For the first time, I felt truly loved and accepted. However, this new setting posed its own set of challenges.

I had a lot of folks who couldn’t tell “what I was” at first glance, and I had to deal with ethnic ambiguity that I’d never had to deal with before. And this put me in the situation of having to find out what language I wanted to use to define myself. Sometimes I felt like a conditional Black person, and I think there are some mixed-race Black folks who have a lot of anger about that. I still struggle with it today. I’ve experienced many people both implying and saying, “Well, you’re not Black and you’re not Samoan enough.” And, while I feel very connected to both cultures, I sometimes feel as if I don’t belong to either.

But I’ve also come to understand that the idea of being “authentically” Black is literally a response to things like the one-drop rule and the tie between white supremacy and how we define race and mixed race. So, this reclamation of what it means to be Black is a byproduct of racism. But (and there’s a big but), I’d be remiss to not acknowledge that there are privileges that I have that other non-mixed Black people don’t. I am lighter skinned. I might not be white-passing, but I can pass as something else and because of this, I have been treated as an “exception to the rule” multiple times.

It’s weird to be labeled this way, and I’ve been on the “identity struggle bus” for the better part of my life. But I wouldn’t have it any other way; it’s what makes me who I am. And I’m not an exception. I think that has really made me embrace this idea of I am Black. I’m mixed, but I’m Black.

And being Black is nuanced. It’s beautiful. It’s a privilege in its own right.

Article

FleishmanHillard’s Michael Rinaman, Managing Director, TRUE Global Intelligence APAC, Participated in Session at GEEF 2022

February 17, 2022

FleishmanHillard’s Michael Rinaman, managing director, TRUE Global Intelligence APAC, participated in a plenary session at this year’s Global Engagement & Empowerment Forum on Sustainable Development (GEEF) in Seoul. During this session, participants discussed Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and how corporations can use SDGs to manage corporate reputation.

Read more about this session and view the recording on FleishmanHillard in Korea’s site.

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FleishmanHillard UK crowned Best Agency for Public Affairs

By Jaiye Elias

FleishmanHillard UK is PRWeek UK Corporate, City & Public Affairs Awards winners, scooping the top prize for Best Agency for Public Affairs! It was expressed that high-quality client work and creative campaigning, for the likes of UKHospitality, impressed the judges. The judges said: “Good growth, impressive diversity stats, quality client work and creative campaigning combine […]

The post FleishmanHillard UK crowned Best Agency for Public Affairs appeared first on United Kingdom.

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FleishmanHillard Discusses the Quality of Women’s Health at GEEF 2022 Session in Korea

February 16, 2022

FleishmanHillard in Korea held a panel at this year’s Global Engagement & Empowerment Forum on Sustainable Development (GEEF) in Seoul. During the session, panelists discussed the status of women’s health policy in Korea and women’s health as a critical global agenda.

Read more about the session and view the recording on FleishmanHillard in Korea’s site.

Article

Accessibility at Work: Cultivating a Culture of Disability Inclusion

February 14, 2022

Over the past decade, many industries have begun creating products and services from an “accessibility-first” perspective: one that considers the needs of as many people as possible from the start. This approach prioritizes equitable experiences for users, including the estimated 1.2 billion persons with disabilities across the world. As communications practitioners, it is vital to ensure that materials are designed with a diverse audience in mind.

However, to cultivate a true culture of accessibility, we must not merely consider the impact of products and services on users. We must push beyond what we create to look at who we are as creators to open meaningful dialogues concerning our own workplace environments. When communications departments fail to maintain a culture that respects and values people with disabilities, this fails us all.

Here are three ways we can all support a culture of disability inclusion in the workplace:

Ramp up disability inclusion education

The path to creating an accessible environment for individuals with disabilities begins with developing a workplace culture that is founded in and actively practices inclusive values. Through top-down promotion of accessibility education, all employees can gain deeper insight into the experiences and needs of others.

Training and education practices need not be limited to official seminars or mandated online programs. Initiatives such as creating inclusive language and design guides and inviting speakers on disability and accessibility topics can enrich both the work we create and those who create it. Other activities like holding brainstorm sessions, with the intent to identify strategies to counteract disability biases, also support active learning.

Additionally, partnerships and collaborations offer valuable opportunities to support accessibility education and development. FleishmanHillard’s membership within The Valuable 500 – a network of companies committed to supporting disability inclusion – strengthens our capacity to develop and act upon accessible strategies within business.

Overall, educational programs and strategies must emphasize appropriate workplace behavior, how to uphold core accessible values in business and the process for reporting behavior that violates these values.

Promote accessible hiring practices

Creating an inclusive recruitment program requires consistent actions to combat hiring biases and proactively include those with disabilities. While inclusive hiring is founded in the domain of human resources professionals, it is ultimately a collaborative effort.

First, accessible job descriptions are a must. The language used within these descriptions reflect the values of the hiring organization and informs the applicant’s perception of the workplace culture. Where possible, communications professionals must advocate for up-to-date disability inclusion statements and accessible language in the role description. These should be regularly reviewed and revised as language conventions evolve.

Additionally, practices such as posting positions on job boards or attending career fairs that specifically support people with disabilities facilitates equitable recruitment. Furthermore, ensuring hiring teams are comprised of people with diverse identities and perspectives introduces a higher level of objectivity into this process. Communications professionals should use their position within a hiring team to actively support accessible practices, to the extent possible given their role within an organization.

As an example of such efforts, FleishmanHillard has partnered with the International Paralympic Committee and other Omnicom agencies to launch #WeThe15 – a decade long campaign that aims to further access to core human rights such as employment, education and healthcare for the 15% of the world with disabilities. An active commitment to disability inclusion during hiring is a critical part of breaking down barriers that people with disabilities face.

Establish and support employee resource groups

Everyone deserves a space where they feel heard and respected for their most authentic selves. Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) are voluntary groups, created with the purpose of supporting an inclusive environment, comprised of and led by employees who share a common identity or who are allies.

People with disabilities can form connections with individuals across entire organizations that may not otherwise be organically developed. These connections foster a sense of belonging within the workplace and bolsters employees’ ability to create diverse, groundbreaking work through collaborations.

At FleishmanHillard, our DisAbility Community ERG creates a space for people with disabilities and allies to find support and engage in open communication. Through enabling productive discussion about inclusive practices and the lived experiences of people with disabilities, this group has a unique and active impact on our communications work.

Conclusion

Each of these steps bring us closer to creating a culture of accessibility. However, at FleishmanHillard, we recognize the need to continuously improve and adapt our strategies on the path to inclusion. Through regular review and dialogues concerning these practices, communications professionals can foster disability inclusion around the world.

Article

Gen Z: Evolving Social Media and Sports Preferences

The pandemic has brought all generations into the digital world to work, connect, socialize and be entertained. Members of Generation Z have lived their entire lives digitally, but as they come of age, they are cementing their status as purveyors of culture, drivers of consumer growth and are redefining the media landscape. Their lives are lived through social media, their lifestyles are defined by the content they consume and they are shaping cultural moments – such as in sports, lifestyle and fashion – from the comfort of their mobile devices.

In partnership with FleishmanHillard’s TRUE Global Intelligence practice, BlueCurrent China released a global study on Generation Z in China, Japan and the UK during Q4 2021. The report aims to understand how this generation is poised to engage with cultural moments through digital platforms, influencing how these moments are made. 

View the report on BlueCurrent China’s site.