Flying in helicopters and riding in locomotives. Shaking hands with the President of the United States. Leading an event on the stunning grounds of Pebble Beach. Driving an exotic supercar home for the weekend. Doing CNN live and countless other media interviews. These are but a few of the thrills I’ve enjoyed thus far in my chosen field of communications.
I’ve also been entrusted to help a grieving mom who lost her toddler son in a horrific accident share her anguished story with the nation so others might be spared similar grief. I’ve aided senior government officials communicating onsite from major derailments where people perished. In this post 9/11 world, I’ve even worked with leading corporations to prepare them for the serious business of communicating in the aftermath of a terrorist attack or other mass casualty event.
All of this got me thinking about how to explain what we do in communications in general, and at Stratacomm, in particular. To be sure, most days at Stratacomm are less dramatic than the extremes noted above. The more typical days, however, are no less important to our clients and to their audiences with whom we communicate.
Our role is to educate people on an issue, persuade them to a point of view and motivate them to take a desired action. In this way, it’s humbling to consider what Stratacomm does in terms of our people helping our clients do big things on big issues, day after day:
- Educating the public to change behavior and save lives
- Showcasing autonomous mobility technologies to better our world
- Promoting solar power, cleaner fuels, advanced materials, low emission hearth products, electric vehicles, LED lightbulbs and private land conservation to protect our planet
- Raising brand awareness and favorability to launch startups, grow companies and promote industries
- Serving government agencies as they advance the public good
- Communicating on big construction projects to ease community concerns and impacts
- Shaping public conversations and policy debates leading into a Supreme Court case (Ask me sometime about how we ended up arranging for a Stratacomm intern to address the national media from the steps of the high court)
- Engaging with local officials to demonstrate how investing in train stations rejuvenates cities
- Assisting universities to expand alumni networks and even maintain accreditation
- Spotlighting mine-resistant military vehicles to safeguard troops in harm’s way
- Sharing the journey of a building’s conversion to net zero to inspire others
- And so much more …
Working at Stratacomm affords the opportunity to interact with incredibly diverse people – be they clients, colleagues, partnering firms and others. The relationships we forge with our clients, in particular, run the gamut from being hired guns, to trusted advisors, to vital partners, and even to close friends.
Stratacomm brings together people who offer an exceptional array of passions, skills and competencies to move our firm and our clients forward. We get to unleash creative minds to develop and run everything from small local events to large national campaigns.
There is no step-by-step instruction manual for us to follow. Rather it’s converting blue sky thinking into ground-level actions. And it’s innovating to harness the rapidly advancing, myriad ways in which we can develop, run, analyze, refine and measure integrated communications campaigns. And we know all of this comes together to deliver for our clients because annual surveys confirm nine out of 10 them would hire us again (and 100 percent of our people are proud to work here).
When the sun rises, there’s no telling what the day ahead might bring in terms of new challenges, varied tasks and shifting priorities. What is certain, however, is that what Stratacomm does every day is to communicate with a range of people, across a range of platforms, on a range of issues to help solve a range of business, policy and public service challenges by delivering measurable results.
Our job often entails simplifying whatever is being conveyed. So, I’ll take my own best advice and reduce to three words what it is exactly that Stratacomm does: help clients thrive.
John F. Fitzpatrick co-manages Stratacomm – a strategic communications consultancy based in D.C. and Detroit. The firm’s core values center on client service, innovation, entrepreneurship, teamwork, learning, ethics and fun.