If you are starting out or considering a career change, does the following appeal – learning another language (or three), travelling and working abroad to understand things from different cultural angles, putting yourself in other people’s shoes and thinking ‘what’s in it for me?’ from their point of view, being inquisitive, an interpreter of information and insightful, and above all being a diplomat – forgiving, encouraging, conciliatory, driving change? Ie, being paid to be a roving, curious, intellectual, liberal dilettante? Welcome, then, to the new order of public relations and its search for talent around the world.

This was one of the many conclusions of our latest round-tables on globalisation and public relations, held in Echo’s offices London this week. The debate followed up the inaugural session in New York earlier this summer which focused on the need for public relations to draw on the world of politics. The ‘eternal verity’ of PR – that it be authentic,to tell a story truthfully and engagingly – remains, said the London gathering, along with the desire to ‘be an actor in the world’ (rather than just a commentator/observer), and the need to be enterprising internally and externally to support leadership teams in welcoming risk and driving change. No one else in the organisation is equipped to do this, and rather than be threatened by marketing or legal counsel, the best of their approaches should be channelled in the interest of corporate responsibility.

The Authentic Enterprise White Paper has not been fully launched in London so it is encouraging to see how its currency is so relevant and consistent. The challenge, it seems, is finding people to help make it happen.

The final round-table is being held in Zurich next month at Credit Suisse’s offices with global CCOs from the Continent. The findings and video soundbites will be integrated into the International Public Relations Association (IPRA)’s Gold Paper on Globlization and Public Diplomacy, and presented at the 18th IPRA Public Relations World Congress in Beijing on 13-15 November 2008.