PUTRAJAYA, 7 April 2022 – In time of uncertainties, trust and reputation are possibly the two fundamentals that become organisation’s pillars for sustainable and future growth, and this is where public relations (PR) can play a major role, according to Secretary-General of Ministry of Communications and Multimedia, Dato’ Sri Haji Mohammad Mentek.

In his speech at the launching of Global Alliance Education, Training and Development Month (GAETM) 2022 last Friday (1 April) in Putrajaya, he pointed out that the world today continues to go through a high degree of uncertainty, and South East Asia continues to be impacted by global issues.

In this context, he said, public opinion remains central to shaping the perception which translates into image and reputation.

His speech was delivered by Deputy Director-General of Information Department, Mr. Zainudin Haji Ismail, who represented him at the event which coincided with the launching of the 60th anniversary logo of the Institute of Public Relations Malaysia (IPRM).

Mohammad Mentek said: “A business can achieve its objective more easily if it has a good reputation among its stakeholders, opinion leaders in the business community, suppliers, and current and potential employees.”

He said that corporate reputation is a ‘soft’ concept. “It is the overall estimation in which an organisation is held by its internal and external stakeholders based on its past actions and probability of its future behaviour.”

“While reputation is an intangible concept, it is evident that a good reputation demonstrably increases corporate worth and provide sustained competitive advantage,” he highlighted.

He further said that an organisation which is well regarded by its stakeholders will influence other publics with words of mouth or words of mouth aided by technology.

“The public will be more inclined to trust your organisation. Likewise, generally government regulators will trust the organisation more if it has a good reputation,” he added.

GAETM 2022 was held in a hybrid mode that saw the speech delivered by the President and CEO of Global Alliance (GA), Mr. Justin Green, and a live presentation of the Global Capability Framework for PR practitioners by Prof. Anne Gregory of Huddersfield University (UK).

Attended by PR and communication practitioners, as well as communication academics and students from across the globe, the event was regarded as important as the social media and digital transformation today rules the communication world.

Mohamad Mentek told the audience that the Ministry recognised the commitment and contribution of outstanding organisations and individuals who share important stories, creative strategies, leadership skills and communication tactics as part of their contributions to global PR and communication body of knowledge.

The event was chaired by Mr. Jaffri Amin Osman, the Global Alliance (GA) chair of the Asia Pacific, who is also the Vice-President of IPRM and the CEO of World Communications, a public relations consultancy firm. Jaffri is the first Malaysian to be elected to the Switzerland-based GA executive board.

Present at the event was President of IPRM, Dato’ Sri Haji Ibrahim Abdul Rahman and President of ASEAN Public Relations Network (APRN), Ibu Prita Kemal Gani who appeared online.

GAETM is the first and largest free global education programme undertaken so far. Through collaboration of members, GA held global educational and training for communication and public relations professionals during April and May last year. This included over 150 webinars with professionals sharing their knowledge and insights from around the world during the unprecedented time.

The event this year featured sharing of public relations and communication materials like articles, videos, case studies, podcasts, and other related PR materials. The 24-hourly video marathon which was held from 5 p.m on 31 March until 5 p.m on 1 April was launched from its Kuala Lumpur office.

Current issues and topics shared throughout GAETM 2022 included digital transformation, trust issues, empathy, impacts of Korean culture, brand inclusivity and diversity, future of PR, ethics in social media, and voices of the young. These materials are available in the format of videos, podcasts, articles, and special write-ups.

Among others, the objectives of GAETM 2022 are to share impact assessment of COVID-19 to public relations and communication profession as well as the resilience of learning institutions; to share how IR 4.0 and soon IR 5.0 dramatically changed the landscape of the profession and institutions; to share rescue strategy in terms of transforming the way to do business.

It is also aimed to prepare professionals and institutions in welcoming recovery and sustainability post-pandemic, assess the damage and the remaining assets, and make bold and courageous moves to regain business brands hit by the pandemic, apart from sharing latest PR and communication tactics and strategies relevant to corporate sector and institutions globally.

The event also witnessed the handing over of the Malay translation of the Global Alliance PR and Communication Model to the representative of the Secretary-General by Dr. Wan Norbani Wan Noordin of Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) who led the team to undertake the translation work. ***