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Research on best practices of public relations sponsored by the International Association of Business Communicators suggests that excellent public relations occurs when the senior communications officer is part of the dominant coalition and has a presence in the C-suite.Bowen et al. (2006). When the public relations function is relegated to a communication technician role, it is not fulfilling its unique management function.
As mentioned previously, this status must be earned. Public relations professionals gain that access by providing essential information and counsel necessary for making important decisions. When these communication professionals have the advanced knowledge of strategic public relations, including research and evaluation, and demonstrate business acumen, they should be a part of that management team.
The next chapter will identify other organizational factors that also influence how public relations is practiced.