Keep Your Friends Close, But Your Enemies Closer…

Friends and opponents can both be critically important to the success of a public affairs campaign.  So how best should you think about these audiences? Potential allies for a campaign can often be given a huge amount of attention but the role of opponents is often less well thought through.  Yes, supporters can reinforce messages …

How To Win Political Trust

Building relationships of trust with policy-makers is at the heart of public affairs.  But how can you build those relationships? It is important to appreciate from the outset that, just as with any other relationship, time and effort needs to be invested.  Sometimes the policy-makers may feel like a very needy friend but if you …

Brexit and the Devolution Dilemma

All sides in the Brexit debate expect some economic disruption once we leave the EU. Many believe that the future should be in local hands and that Westminster needs to let go. Unfortunately, it seems that Westminster does not necessarily feel the same way. There was certainly a drive towards devolution under the Coalition Government …

What to say to a politician

It is easy to get confused about what to say when faced with a politician.  The meeting may have taken an age to set-up and is an important 30 minutes.  But if not properly prepared for then the opportunity will be wasted. There can, of course, be different types of interaction with a relevant politician. …

How To Know When Government Doesn’t Have The Answers

It is a self-evident truth of modern politics that Government has to pretend to have all the answers.  But as we all know that is very far from the reality. Here are some examples of when it is very clear that Government doesn’t quite know what to do…. Too often, the media and political opponents …

The Politics of Infrastructure Has Changed… For The Worse

The announcement of Crossrail’s delay and cost overruns have been accompanied by ongoing media stories about similar issues with HS2. Such failures will undermine political and community support for infrastructure projects and something has to be done. It has to be remembered that both projects built on the hope and optimism generated by the Olympics.  …

What Makes A Good CEO In A Crisis?

We have all seen CEOs perform in times of a crisis for their organisation. But what are the main traits that help them to perform well? What makes a good CEO in a crisis? The type of pressure faced in times of a crisis is different from other forms. The time available to think and …

Reputation above all else? International Development Select Committee’s damning report

The publication of the International Development Select Committee report into “sexual exploitation and abuse in the aid sector” suggested that there had been “more concern for reputations than victims”. This approach from organisations is not just wrong but also inflicts more reputational damage.  Sometimes organisations need to inflict early reputational damage on themselves if they …