When reading PRSA’s Code of Ethics preamble I am reminded of the scene in Pirates of the Caribbean when Elizabeth is informed that the Pirate’s Code are more like guidelines than actual rules. These are something to follow in general, but there are those who stray. The Code only applies to PRSA members, who risk loss of membership if legal action is taken against a member who’s actions violate this Code. Emphasis is placed on maintaining integrity to ensure that those who are members of PRSA continue to have a good reputation in the Public Relations world.
The Code has six main descriptive words followed by a brief explanation. Advocacy is first. PR reps are their client’s advocates in the marketplace. It is their responsibility to represent the client in the manner required, providing information to the public. This is followed by Honesty, it is important when communicating with the public to be clear and accurate with information presented. Expertise is described as using the knowledge they gain to the best of their ability in a professional and creditable manner, moving into Independence. Being objective in counsel given to the client is important as is taking responsibility for your actions. Loyalty is also important, to both the client and to the obligation to public interest. Last is Fairness; respecting all those interacted with, opinions and the freedom of speech.
I personally think these are all important qualities to have in any job and life in general. As someone of Faith I hold myself to many of these standards in all I do. In class we discussed how our personal ethics affect the job we take. There are companies I wouldn’t represent no matter the price. Planned Parenthood is one them. While I respectfully do not judge the actions of others, my personal beliefs prohibit me from enabling something I so strongly disagree with. I have also had to leave jobs due to unfair and unprofessional treatment of employees, including threats of physical violence. As a consumer I respect and I am more likely to purchase from companies who maintain these guidelines. The quality of service and product go far in my opinion.