My Google Experience: Part 4
Majors Log: Star-date_1/11/11
What a great day to post a blog. There has been a lot of things going on since my last post. I have been mainly working with our PR managers on day-to-day announcements and product launches. Since we were right in the midst of Holiday season, a lot of charity and non-profit promotional launches were priority. Last week was a big week for Google's "Android" at the Consumer Electronic Show (CES) 2011. I did not attend the annual showcase in Las Vegas but the product line and operating system received huge reviews and favorable write-ups from the tech world. Everyone is now getting back in the swing of work and the news cycle is starting to take off again.
Most recently, I delivered a presentation-pitch to our Asian-Pacific public affairs directors and team members on Army Public Affairs. I felt this was an opportunity to share some of the similarities and complexities the Army has dealt with over time and to see where Google can learn from our missteps and vice versa. I was astonished so many "Googlers" had a vast interest in how the Army does business from a public affairs perspective. Some of their key areas of professional interest included the "Rolling Stone" article surrounding GEN (Ret) McChrystal, the nature of embed reporters, the story of SGT Pat Tillman, Abu Ghraib story, and of course DADT. I totally underestimated the level of relevance I bring to this mega-organization and how much we all can learn from each other.
As I continue to work and grow professionally in the field of public affairs, I am starting to learn this business of communication and message development as more of an "art-form" and less of a "layered-procedure"; surgical in planning but crafty in execution. Army public affairs has increasingly become more kinetic in military operations and deliberate in its implementation; yet it is mostly dependent on command culture, personal make-ups and subjective regarding measures of effectiveness. I've learned the art of working with journalists to assist with telling the Army's story is a subtle process that requires honesty, ethicalness, accuracy and responsiveness. Some stories will be favorable and some will be less than favorable. I've also discovered that assisting reporters to craft a story or feature about the Army is much like an artist painting a picture of a symbol of joy, triumph and freedom, however, the artist is acutely aware to include signs of pain, turmoil and despair in order to depict the honesty of struggle and evidence of perseverance.
Tech-innovation will continue to flood our consumer markets and will become more solidified in the footprint of society. It will be vital to have knowledgeable personnel embedded in our military familiar with such new technology and who can responsibly employ these resources in order to reap the calculated results for our commanders and leaders in the field and behind the podium. Remember the fight is not always conducted on the ground or in the sand-box but sometimes its in front of the camera!
I'm happy to be at Google working along side future innovators that will ultimately create an idea that will aid in the mission of our Soldiers serving in the United States Army, both now and for years to come.