Comment / 2014


“Do what you are passionate about, not what you are good at”, says Ketchum’s Stephen Waddington
“I was one of those kids that was really good at technology and electronics and science and a little bit dyslexic, although that wasn’t recognised until I went to high school. Every early decision was driven by what I was good at, which was science and technology, but actually I would have been better doing something like English and History as that’s what I am more interested in. This is why I tell my kids do what you are passionate about, not what you are good at."

PR Moment
10 December 2014

Social Buzz Top 50: Advice from the UK's most influential individuals in social on breaking into the industry "Set yourself up so that employers seek you out. You can do this by signing up to continuous professional development, developing a network of brands and people you want to work with, building your own profile by creating your own media and creatively illustrating how you understand the industry" -- Stephen Waddington, director, Ketchum and president, CIPR.

The Drum
8 December 2014

Flexible working must become commonplace to ensure the public relations profession keeps up with the changing business practices, writes Stephen Waddington The single biggest issue spotlighted by the CIPR’s State of the Profession survey has been that, in 2014,the average pay gap between the sexes is £12,000.Whether you cut the data in terms of an average pay gap or an imbalance in seniority, it is unacceptable that men are, on average, earn more than women – even when performing the same roles. It’s shameful.

Communicate magazine
4 December 2014


Twitter UK MD Bruce Daisley named Individual of the Year at the Social Buzz Awards
Stephen Waddington, director, Ketchum and president, CIPR ranked no 5.

The Drum
28 November 2014

The warning signs that you are working too hard in PR
It is vital to know yourself, says Stephen Waddington, European digital and social media director at PR firm Ketchum, because it is hard to recognise that you are working too hard: “Judging whether you’re taking on too much work can be very difficult, but it’s something you’ll need to master if you want to get on in most forms of occupation."

PR Moment
26 November 2014

President becomes professor
Newcastle University has appointed CIPR President Stephen Waddington as a Visiting Professor of Practice in Public Relations. The Digital and Social Media Director for Ketchum Europe, Waddington advises clients throughout Europe and globally. A former journalist and serial entrepreneur, he is the 2014 President of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations, where he has led a bold modernisation programme over the last twelve months.

Behind The Spin
25 November 2014

Newcastle University appoints PR Professor
Newcastle University has appointed Ketchum's Stephen Waddington as a Visiting Professor of Practice in Public Relations in the School of Arts and Cultures. His remit as Visiting Professor is to support the University through teaching, engagement with practice, and industry-led research.

25 November 2014

CIPR to produce and distribute its own content from 2015
President of the CIPR Stephen Waddington says, “This is part of the story of the fragmentation of media that has played out over the last 20 years. The CIPR already has strong owned and shared media channels, and through additional investment will be able to deliver better value and engagement to members.

Communicate magazine
18 November 2014

Once-in-a-generation opportunity to take the lead as a profession
There has never been a more exciting or challenging time to work in the PR business.

18 November 2014

North east new media rocks "Amsterdam, Berlin and London may attract the headlines and the attention of European business media and venture capitalists but there’s no doubt in my mind that media innovation is booming in the north east, fuelled by inward investment, home grown talent and infrastructure."

Northern Correspondent
10 November 2014


New CIPR Council rings in governance changes
The PR industry is always changing and always adapting to new situations. It’s only fitting that the association that represents the industry is changing too. […]The recent elections for the CIPR Council were voted on by the entire electorate for the first time. […] The 28 members of the council appointed on Monday were elected by 1,100 voters, a 90% increase in turnout, year-on-year.

Communicate Magazine
26 September 2015


21 strategic leaders, 2 days, 1 beach…It must be Silicon Beach 2014
“Marketing is no longer the adrenaline fuelled one-way propaganda crusade it was once was; it’s about brand-customer conversations.” – Stephen Waddington.

Coco Creative
26 September 2014

How to modernise a PR agency or Comms team
Where should you start when thinking about modernising a PR agency or Comms team? What does that even mean? You’re in the right place to find out thanks to current President of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations, Stephen Waddington. He’s just published a guide and it’s such a corker I thought I’d share it with readers of my blog.

All Things IC
24 September 2014

Stephen Waddington joins Suzy Ferguson Spirit Award judging panel Stephen Waddington, director of Ketchum Europe and CIPR President, has joined the judging panel to find a worthy winner for this year's Suzy Ferguson Spirit Award.

24 September 2014


Why public relations must wake up to wearables
During the CIPR debate, its current president, Stephen Waddington, rightly said that in dealing with wearable and connected technologies the “only way is ethics,” a sentiment with which I wholeheartedly agree. Yet I wonder how well equipped practitioners are when it comes to deal with the ethical dimensions we will find ourselves exploring?

PR Conversations
7 August 2014


PR is dead. Long live PR.
Stephen Waddington is Ketchum’s European director of digital and social media and this years president of the CIPR. In his books, speeches and blog posts he’s been emphasising the need for public relations to change.

Behind the Spin
15 July 2014

Public figures exploit 'right to be forgotten' at their own peril Stephen Waddington, director of Ketchum Europe and president of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations, says the Merrill Lynch example demonstrates that "you can actually end up drawing more attention to content because the article isn’t actually removed from the Internet."

PR Week US
11 July 2014

The Prolific Northerners 2014 – The Top 100
Although he originally trained as a journalist, Waddington is now a leading PR consultant and the current president of the CIPR. He established his name as the co-founder of technology specialist Rainier PR, eventually selling the £2.3m-turnover agency to Loewy, and then founded Speed before joining Ketchum in December 2012.

Prolific North
11 July 2014

House of Commons debate - is wearable tech an ethical nightmare for PR industry?
The existing ethical frameworks within the PR and communications are "efficient" enough to cover advances in wearable tech, CIPR president Stephen Waddington said during a House of Commons debate last night.

The Drum
8 July 2014

Stephen Waddington, #BrandVandals and the future of public relations
Reputation and trust is an outcome of good public relations. In my view, our future as practitioners lies in helping organisations communicate with their publics and foster a genuine dialogue. There is a secondary issue: Public relations shouldn’t be siloed as a department within an organisation. It should be part of every operational area of a business and be represented at the highest level of an organisation.

Tom Liacas
7 July 2014

CIPR President's Report
I spent several years criticising the CIPR until I was invited to join the Social Media panel. That group, led by Rule 5’s Rob Brown, has been a strong catalyst for change. The happenstance of my term as president and Alastair McCapra's appointment as CEO has given us a strong impetus and drive for change.

3 July 2014


Collision Course: advertising, digital and PR new world order
How to navigate the new world order of comms was the topic of discussion at a Gorkana event this week, hosted by Ketchum's Stephen Waddington. Joining him to debate were Telefónica's Paul Fabretti; Sarah McGhie from Domino's; Golin's Neil Kleiner; and Farhad Koodoruth from Threepipe.

27 June 2014

Walking gives your ideas legs Stephen Waddington, a director of the PR agency Ketchum Europe, was astounded by how many triggers Green found in the Tube trip between London’s Liverpool Street and Aldgate stations. “He told me to come with a creative problem, which was a situation I had with trying to build a community for one of my clients,” Waddington said. “We started travelling and around every corner he would pull out an idea or a source of inspiration.”

The Sunday Times
22 June 2014


BrandVandals » de Steve Earl & Stephen Waddington
Avec « #BrandVandals », les experts britanniques Steve Earl et Stephen Waddington délivrent un ouvrage à lire impérativement par tout communicant qui se respecte.

Le Blog du Communicant
24 May 2014

Chadlington slams 'right to be forgotten' ruling as "unbelievable and strange"
The PR veteran was speaking to PRWeek following criticism of the European Court’s ruling by CIPR president Stephen Waddington, who said it would set the financial interests of the PR industry against notions of democracy.

20 May 2014

Right to be forgotten ruling will pit PR against democracy, says CIPR president
"[The] interests of society at large and the best interests of the [public relations] industry are pushing in the opposite direction, they are misaligned. In this day and age that is just not sustainable. Do we really want the financial interests of our industry to be counter to notions of democracy?"

15 May 2014

'Legal action is needed to tackle the growing problem of slave labour with unpaid interns'
CIPR President Stephen Waddington has described this as ‘morally questionable’ and said ‘free labour has no place in any sustainable business model.

Wales Online
11 May 2014

April 2014

A glimpse into the future of branded content marketing
The CIPR’s president Stephen Waddington even sees branded content moving beyond marketing to become the communication norm across the organisation. But there’s some consensus that more risks still need to be taken before branded content truly lies at the heart of every strategy.

11 April 2014

Industry Responds to Financial Times ‘PR Is a Waste of Money’ Piece
The most positive point in her piece came from CIPR president Stephen Waddington, who said “as media fragments, communications becomes what everyone does within an organisation.” He followed up on that thought in a blog post today, writing: "...engagement requires professional expertise. Public relations has a role in listening and engagement in every department within a modern organisation."

PR Newser
11 April 2014

Publicity is free with no PRs
Stephen Waddington, president of the Chartered Institute for Public Relations, says “As media fragments, communications becomes what everyone does within an organisation. Organisations need more guidance for a greater number of employees, he says. The role of the internal communications professional will be in the ascendancy as employees engage with external audiences,” he argues.

Financial Times
8 April 2014

We must get our equality house in order
It is absolutely shameful that the average pay gap between the sexes is £12,000, says Stephen Waddington.

8 April 2014

Packed house for social media event
Stephen Waddington, President of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations and European Digital and Social Media Director of global PR firm Ketchum, gave an insight into the changing world of communications. Telling the audience that 90% of all media interactions are now screen based and that people spend on average 4.4 hours per day of their own time in front of screens, Mr Waddington said: “There are no boundaries any more between an organisation and its audience. The world is transparent.

4 April 2014

CIPR survey: poorly paid internships are blocking students' PR careers
CIPR president Stephen Waddington said: "The lack of fair pay for interns has wide ranging repercussions. It reinforces a growing concern that employers who refuse to pay interns could be depriving the profession of the most promising talent. "

3 April 2014

March 2014

Ebook in a day – the day so far!
The second and third year PR & Communications students have already been working on their E-Book in a Day Project for four hours and it’s proving stressful, but successful (mainly to do with 45 people over-loading the Wi-Fi!). With motivation from CIPR President, Stephen Waddington, Richard Berry and Catherine Sweet, I’m excited to see how it turns out!

Solent PR
26 March 2014


The Hobson & Holtz Report - Podcast #744: February 24, 2014
Latest CIPR ‘State of the Profession’ survey prompts a challenge to communicators from CIPR President Stephen Waddington.

For Immediate Release
24 February 2014

Get qualified if you want to be professional, says the CIPR Public relations is at a crossroads, with an alarming contrast between the wishes of communicators to be regarded as professionals and an unwillingness to achieve formal qualifications.

CorpComms Magazine
21 February 2014

NETwitterati pair are appointed to senior CIPR positions
Stephen Waddington and Sarah Hall have been appointed to senior roles in the national body for public relations professionals, the Chartered Institute of Public Relations.

The Journal (Newcastle)
17 February 2014

Stephen Waddington: It’s time for PRs to be taken seriously
It is critical that the CIPR is relevant to members and the broader profession. That starts with the value proposition focused on professionalism. We are shifting the organisation to become a network that is more member-led and a truly social organisation. The CIPR is a UK-wide organisation and it needs to represent the interests of members beyond London. We need to invest in the network, not the central organisation. There’s a lot to do but we’ve made a good start.

3 February 2014

An interview with Stephen Waddington “The [public relations] professional will continue to polarise between practitioners that are cracking on and using new forms of media to engage publics in a two-way dialogue and those that continue to spam journalists. The former have a great future in the business. The latter will be out of a job within a generation I’m afraid.”

Wes Hosie
3 February 2014


Future proofing the business of public relations
The business of public relations is in massive upheaval as media fragments and organizations connect directly with their publics. It’s a terrific opportunity for anybody in the public relations business that is willing to embrace change. Yet all too often we get hung up about the future of the profession. Our colleagues in the advertising and digital have no such worries. They are getting on with it and taking our ground.

30 January 2014

Future skills, influence, Romans and cement
"It was great to hear from the new president of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) at what was once the frontier of Roman Britain and talk through PR issues as varied as the Roman origins of social media and this week’s cement-gate on the London Underground. It was great to have such a senior figure in Newcastle, with Wadds making good on his commitment as president to empower the regions right across the UK."

Ross Wigham
24 January 2014

A major overhaul of the CIPR is imminent
"The CIPR’s purpose as an organisation lies in shifting the business of PR from a craft to a profession. Its value is a royal charter commitment to drive up standards in PR and to work to improve the profession’s reputation."

15 January 2014

Minter Dialogue Episode #85
"Successful repeat entrepreneur, author and prolific blogger, Stephen Waddington is now running Digital and Social Media for Ketchum Europe, part of the Omnicom Group. Stephen is leading the charge for the modernization and professionalization of PR practitioners. If you are interested in the evolution of PR, you’ll want to listen to what Stephen has to say."

The Myndset Company
11 January 2014

#PRin2014: Top trends that will impact the industry in 2014
"But if we expect to take our place at the head of the table, PR pros need to learn from our colleagues in advertising and digital. Moving forward, PR pros need to stop getting hung up on the future of the profession and get on with taking our ground."

10 January 2014

Mind your #BrandVandals employees
"Today, thanks to the Internet, communication between an organisation and its audiences can no longer be one-way: everyone has a powerful voice through which they can share their opinions. This is the subject discussed in#BrandVandals by Steve Earl and Stephen Waddington. The book examines the impact that social media-empowered individuals can have on organisations, and proposes some answers for the future of organisational communications."

Marginalia on Engagement
5 January, 2014