How To Challenge Your Political Bias

A key skill in public affairs is being able to understand and work with audiences from a range of political perspectives. But if you approach the problem with fixed political ideas then it could all go very wrong. So we all need to take steps to challenge our political bias. It is, of course, perfectly …

The Brexit Outcome? Europe will be more important than ever

Despite the ongoing saga that is Brexit, there will be one clear outcome.  UK businesses will need to do more to engage with Europe, its institutions and its Member States. But how? The release of the House of Lords European Union Committee report, ‘Beyond Brexit: How to Win Friends and Influence People’ provides some really …

Think Carefully About Thought Leadership

Thought leadership can offer many benefits in public affairs but there can be too much of a focus on the media.  We need to be aware of the potential pitfalls and take action. Thought leadership can set you apart from the competition, and we have to be aware that we are all competing for space …

It’s Not Just About the Written Word

Often public affairs is focused on the messages and briefing papers but sometimes it can take more than words to convince an audience. Be prepared to think beyond the written word. Of course, the written word is important. Politicians, and especially civil servants, can be quite traditional in their approach. They like and appreciate briefing papers …

The Democratisation of Public Affairs

Opening up a public affairs campaign can help deliver greater impact but there can also be a fear of ‘letting go’. While there will always be risks, there can also be significant benefits. It is a cliché to suggest that modern communications and social media have returned power to the people. Certainly they offer greater …

The Rise (Again) of Parliament and its Impact on Public Affairs

The importance of Parliament is increasing. Taking back control means that public affairs campaigns need to focus on Parliament and not just treat it as somewhere to hold events. With strong and stable majority long-term governments came Parliamentarians that followed the lines set out by the party leadership. Patronage was strong and Prime Ministers could …

Be Prepared To Defend Yourself

Not all political comment is welcome and sometimes politicians simply get things wrong. But don’t sit back, think about your reputation and defend yourself. There can be a tendency to steer away from responding to a politician. The risks can be considered too high when balanced against the often limited upside. A ‘wounded’ politician can, …

Sometimes You Do Need To Shout

Using all the means at your disposal to shout about an issue is rarely the best way to deal with Government. But sometimes the circumstances dictate it.  Brexit now calls for shouting. Organisations do not like to stand too close to the political flame. They worry about the long-term implications and the potential regulatory or …

The Political Realities of 2019

Anyone considering how to engage with Government and politics in 2019 needs to consider the political realities and their impact.  It shows the scale of the task ahead. There is no doubt that Brexit has dominated all else for a long time.  It is sucking the time and the energy of central government and civil …