Leadership in Communication Management

Professor Bruce K. Berger from the Plank Center for Leadership in Public Relations at the University of Alabama gave the participants an insight into leadership models and empirically based criteria for excellent leadership in communications management.

Howard Nothhaft (Lund University) set out his first attempts at identifying the empirically relevant roles of German communications managers. Professors Finn Frandsen and Winni Johansen (Aarhus University) highlighted the complex relationship between strategy and communications management. According to the researchers, strategy is to be found everywhere. Strategy should also be understood as a process, not a product, and as something where reflection plays an inherent role.

Professor Joachim Schwalbach (Humboldt University Berlin) also pointed out that communication has to be adopted into the corporate logic of the company in order to be successful. This also means facing the changes of the dynamic, globalized world and taking them into account. However, responsible action should not be ruled out, quite the contrary: Schwalbach advocated an approach of responsible corporate management, which brings together corporate governance, corporate social responsibility and the ‘license to operate’. In addition, responsible action should go hand in hand with a successful action.

Professor Ansgar Zerfass (University of Leipzig) and Thomas Mickeleit from Microsoft Germany discussed the latest research results and practical insights into the role of social media. Professor Claudia Mast (University of Hohenheim) has seen on the basis of empirical studies clear limitations for personalization strategies in business journalism. Readers and decision makers have shown a renewed interest in holistic reporting on corporate issues. This has had a concrete impact the work of the press.

The evening was rounded off with an interesting evening program in Leipzig’s Stadtbad. Built in 1916 and currently in the process of being restored, this building is one of the best examples of art nouveau architecture in Europe.