Photo by Chris Montgomery on Unsplash

I recently moderated/lead a panel discussion on the challenges of managing an extended workforce (it was part of the HRTA’s Collaboration Zone event). The discussion followed several presentations which addressed the mechanics of the extended workforce, and an assortment of “enabling” technologies that allow workers and organizations to match talent to task, without geographical encumbrances. But the session I was enlisted to lead primarily spoke to the “collateral” issues:

  • In the podcast I co-host (Work in Progress), we often talk about company culture — whether it’s a CEO, a film director on set, or a musician leading a recording session…

Photo by Aubrey Hicks on Unsplash

One of my recent NSFW columns for WorldatWork (A Trip Down COVID Lane) discusses the things I’ll miss when we’ve been able to put the pandemic in the rearview. I wanted to write a parallel piece about the Trump years (for Medium, as politics are, ironically, not safe for NSFW ), but after 24 hours of coming up empty, I decided to go a more conventional route and list the things I won’t miss, not even for a second.

I hasten to mention that I’ve studiously avoided politics in my NSFW columns, on my Work in Progress podcast, and in…


A marketing asset or even a series of assets does not a content marketing campaign make. It’s the difference between a series of random musical notes and an extended jam from a well-drilled jam or jazz band: one produces a coherent body of music, the other a whole lot of sound and fury signifying…nothing meaningful or memorable.

Some bands are capable of extended jams that seem to defy gravity — their musicianship and near telepathic interplay enable them to sustain brilliantly structured improvisations that, in lesser hands, collapse under the weight of leaden drum solos and aimless guitar hero pyrotechnics…


by Charles Epstein

A typical trade show offers a brief three-day window to capture attention. After months of planning, the show comes and goes in the blink of an eye. In the end, Sales and Marketing may have little to show for it but a stack of leads that may, in fact, lead nowhere. Focusing trade show efforts solely on customer acquisition is bound to result in disappointment.

Integrating a slate of public relations (PR) activities — from securing placement in an industry pub that will be distributed at the show to preparing press kits — can result in third-party…


by Charles Epstein

Photo by Jose Francisco Morales on Unsplash

Sometimes it’s eye opening seeing how the other half lives — or, in this particular case, how the other half “pitches.” As a veteran PR practitioner I’ve seen many things change over the years, from how one engages reporters (put that cell phone down!) to suddenly needing to be everywhere at once (Twitter! Instagram! Pinterest!) and an equally intense need to avoid several places at all cost (no comment). One thing, however, has remained constant: the importance of a “killer” pitch (aka, editorial query).

On Twitter the dreaded “ratio” refers to tweets where the negative responses far…


by Charles Epstein

It turns out that that the answer to our over-dependence on cell phones, tablets, smart watches and personal assistants — all the “modern inconveniences” — is to make them a bit more inconvenient.

This is apparently what Palm had in mind when they introduced a small form factor phone and touted its limitations (smaller screen, less processing horsepower and functionality) as a way of replacing one very bad habit — cell phone addition — with a less bad one. As Ezra Klein tweeted, “This product makes no sense in a consumer goods framework of smartphone use but…


by Charles Epstein

Don’t get me wrong, I love radio.

Some of my earliest and fondest memories are radio-based: listening to late-night Mets and Knicks games (and some of their most epic well past bedtime), growing up listening to the talk radio that played in the house continuously (I can still do passable imitations of Bob Grant, Barry Farber and Malachi McCord), and in my high school years listening deep into the night to the surrealistic dreamscapes of the great radio monologist Joe Frank. Years ago I wrote a pilot for a radio series called Dick Mann Undercovers (wherein the eponymous Marlowe/Bond-like hero battles an assortment of…


by Charles Epstein

I’m gonna have to say it: it feels like yesterday that we took pictures of my daughter just before she walked through our front door en route to her first day of kindergarten (I’m reminded of it every day as the picture is affixed to my monitor). A mere 12 years later and we’re seeing her off to college. It’s wrenching, exciting and unsettling all at the same time, which Daniel Drezner neatly captured in his recent Washington Post column, “An open letter to incoming frosh at colleges from one of your parents (I’m not crying you’re…


What the sales team can learn from behavioral psychology

This is probably not news — certainly not to me in my other life as a recreational tennis player: most of us hate losing more than we take satisfaction in winning or potential gain. If I leave the court with a decisive 2 set win, I’ll spend the next 24 hours playing the best points in my head…then move on with my life. If I’m on the losing end, it becomes an all-consuming obsession, eating at me like a rolling toxic heartburn. For days.

Clearly I’m not alone. The psychologists Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky demonstrated the intensity of “loss…


Hint: it’s not always in a press release.

According to a recent Muck Rack survey, 53% of U.S. based journalists do not rely on a press releases at all to find new stories, with just 3% of journalists worldwide reporting that they did. To any sentient PR person who’s been awake these past oh, ten years, this is not news.

You will occasionally find a friendly reporter who will eagerly glom onto your press release and flatter your sterling prose by filing a story that uses 90% of it (thanks!). But as pr professionals we know not to bank on a press release turning into — or even…

BackBone

Tech, Workforce and Healthcare PR, marketing communications, bus development.

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