In this series of guest posts, participants of PR Advanced: Be The Change will give their own perspective on a different part of the day. Our second post is about the second keynote of the day, Margery Kraus of APCO Worldwide.
“Passion is the secret sauce,” Margery Kraus calmly explained as PR Advanced’s second keynote speaker of the day took the stage.
Founder APCO Worldwide in 1984, Margery currently resides as the firm’s global CEO. APCO Worldwide is an independent global communications consultancy with 29 worldwide locations and more than 500 employees.
Margery started her speech by describing the vision for her company, originally creating organic, value-based growth by pushing the limits of communications. “By pushing the boundaries of innovate solutions, you can empower great people to do great work.” Margery described. She believes that learning her client’s business first, she was able to help their industry grow.
Building her company around teamwork, trust and keeping APCO Worldwide an employee owned business, Margery has retained control of the majority of the company’s shareholders. Private ownership allows her company more global control in the long run; less focused on immediate profits.
Stressing the importance of looking at external audiences, Margery shared that being a good listener is more about linking what you hear in the media to your client’s current needs. Margery explained, “Don’t worry about what you’re selling, think about what people want to buy.”
A formula for a successful business first involves happy clients, then a service by a reliable group of people and finally a profitable company. Margery clarified, “If you don’t have happy clients, you have nothing.”
APCO Worldwide uses a model of ROI + ROR = Market Capital. Return On Investment + Return On Reputation = Market Capital. Reputation is created by the relationships and perceptions of external, global stakeholders. Margery continued to expound that her company focuses on a different type of GPS. The abbreviation stands for “Global Political Strategy” or navigating through the future of business.
Touching on public relations, Margery continually strives to elevate global understanding of the profession and reserve a respected seat at the corporate table. With new global job markets, corporations need communications professionals to help them reach new consumers. Confiding to the audience her made up word: “Glocal.” Margery described it as “a global view but with a focus on local culture. It’s not that America is less important, but the rest of the world is more important.” Globalistis can be facilitators of international dialogue, no longer just disseminating information.”
Finally, the most important concept APCO Worldwide works and lives by is Passion. Margery described the idea: “Passion provides the fuel for our souls and minds. Passion makes us work better and smarter. Passion makes it more than a job. Passion builds relationships that live beyond the project. Passion is our secret weapon.”
Written by Ellen Cohn, Social Media and Media Relations Coordinator for PR Advanced.