I’d blame writer’s block for my absence of posts these last 10 days. But that isn’t the problem. Fact is, I just can’t find a topic that lights my lamp, at least not anything you’d want to read about.
But here are a few things that might get you thinking about PR and life:
Summer doldrums led me to myragan.com, the new social networking for communication professionals. On arriving, I set up my profile page, then I ventured into some discussion forums where I extended my war of words with Strumpette.
Who can resist an online tussle with the original PR vixen? Not I. Amanda is a pretty good sport, considering that she’s not a real person. I’m kinda glad we have her, as she knows how to spice up the PR blogosphere, provided you don’t take yourself or Amanda too seriously.
If you enjoy discussing PR issues that go beyond Web 2.0 topics, check out the Ragan site. Better yet, try it for a while. More than 6,000 have joined so far and discussion, both on forums and blogs, ranges from deep professional concerns to silly pet peeves. If you join, I’d love to be your friend. I’m easy.
Smoke ’em if you got ’em, Honda says. Back here in Buckeye land, employees at Honda’s giant assembly plant in Marysville, Ohio, will soon have outside smoking areas right on campus. When Ohio passed a statewide smoking ban last fall, Honda prohibited smoking on the entire property, forcing the truly addicted to drive off site for a nicotine fix. That led to lost productivity and even some traffic congestion on the roads nearby. So Honda is adjusting to accommodate the smokers in its employ.
Contrast Honda’s retreat on smoking to another Marysville, Ohio, company that created national buzz last year by banning smoking among employees — on OR off the job. At Scotts MiracleGro, you quit smoking or you find a new job.
One after another, states are enacting bans to protect the rest of us from second-hand smoke — and I’m for that. But how much regulation is too much? And what will be the consequences in terms of employee relationships if we try to manage employee lifestyle choices? Initially, I took the side of Scotts on this one. Now I’m not so sure. My inner-libertarian is rearing its head.
Back on campus at Kent State, we just blessed our first thesis in the new PR master’s degree program. Congrats to Scott Juba, who will become our first official PR master’s grad come August. Scott’s research looks at what PR professionals perceive as the challenges and validity of measuring social media. More on his findings when I get time to summarize them.
On the personal side…
Need a summer adventure? Me, too. So come August, Sharon and I will spend 5 days circumnavigating Wisconsin’s Apostle Islands — in kayaks. That’s 5 days in the boats and 4 nights in a tent — all with no beer. Hmm. I can handle 4 days without a brew, really I can. But the last time I slept on the ground for 4 days I was 27 years old and way, way more flexible.
You know you’re getting old when the wife says, “Hey, we better do this while we still can, honey.” Somehow I just know those Lake Superior waves will massage my pains away. Watch my photo gallery in August, or go there now to see shots from last year’s Lake Superior adventures.
Vicarious adventures are good, too. That’s why you have kids. Our younger son, Chris, and 5 other hardy souls set off 4 days ago from Great Slave Lake in Canada’s NWT. They plan to arrive at the Arctic Ocean somewhere around August 15 with no resupply points en route.
You can check out the details and see our kid’s handsome mug at the trip website (under the “personnel” button.) Seems like yesterday that we put both our boys, then 4 and 7, in a canoe for the first time. I share this item just because it’s so cool to see a kid live a dream at age 21. Wish I were there.