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Four Basic Communication Strategies, Beyond the Borders of Traditional Public Relations Practice
Unformatted Document Text:  17 building, creating one voice, and enthuse people. They see communication as persuasion. Their job to manage this persuasion through harmonic performance. A conductor is the type of communication manager who takes the score provided by the organization, and brings it to life. He sees to it that the correct instrumentation is used, in order to project a well pitched and persuasive voice. He is responsible for pleasing the eyes and ears of his target groups, thereby inducing positive feelings towards the organization. While it is the marketing manager’s task to develop markets, the conductor’s task is to develop a prominent brain position in his target groups for the organization’s mission and position. To this end, research is of the essence. Only by this means is it possible to define and recognize target groups, and to monitor and evaluate the process of persuasion itself. The conductor is convinced that his actions are the product of a calculated process and that they have a predictable outcome. The conductor’s claim to fame is based on his faith in his own ability to find the right tone of voice under any and all circumstances. To him, communication management means interpreting and recreating the opus that has been passed down from those at the top. In order to properly perform this task, the conductor claims a position close to the upper echelons. The conductor first emerged in the professional literature in the eighties, especially in literature, written from a functionalistic perspective. As the first author to seriously define communication management this way, Van Woerkum (1982:39) put it “Influencing the knowledge, attitude and behaviors of target groups in a direction that is predefined by the organization”. At a 1992 national congress of communication management, keynote speaker Van Persie stated that “Communication management is a matter of conducting a large orchestra, in which all sections amalgamate for the benefit of a well written symphony”. She and the other speakers described the communication manager as the “great communicator”. Van Riel (1995) provided the theoretical background for this approach with his concept of corporate communication. This he defined as “an instrument of management by means of which all consciously used forms of internal and external communication are harmonized as effectively and efficiently as possible, so as to create a favorable basis for

Authors: Van Ruler, A. A. Betteke.
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17
building, creating one voice, and enthuse people. They see communication as persuasion. Their job to
manage this persuasion through harmonic performance.
A conductor is the type of communication manager who takes the score provided by the organization,
and brings it to life. He sees to it that the correct instrumentation is used, in order to project a well
pitched and persuasive voice. He is responsible for pleasing the eyes and ears of his target groups,
thereby inducing positive feelings towards the organization. While it is the marketing manager’s task
to develop markets, the conductor’s task is to develop a prominent brain position in his target groups
for the organization’s mission and position. To this end, research is of the essence. Only by this means
is it possible to define and recognize target groups, and to monitor and evaluate the process of
persuasion itself. The conductor is convinced that his actions are the product of a calculated process
and that they have a predictable outcome. The conductor’s claim to fame is based on his faith in his
own ability to find the right tone of voice under any and all circumstances. To him, communication
management means interpreting and recreating the opus that has been passed down from those at the
top. In order to properly perform this task, the conductor claims a position close to the upper echelons.
The conductor first emerged in the professional literature in the eighties, especially in literature,
written from a functionalistic perspective. As the first author to seriously define communication
management this way, Van Woerkum (1982:39) put it “Influencing the knowledge, attitude and
behaviors of target groups in a direction that is predefined by the organization”. At a 1992 national
congress of communication management, keynote speaker Van Persie stated that “Communication
management is a matter of conducting a large orchestra, in which all sections amalgamate for the
benefit of a well written symphony”. She and the other speakers described the communication
manager as the “great communicator”. Van Riel (1995) provided the theoretical background for this
approach with his concept of corporate communication. This he defined as “an instrument of
management by means of which all consciously used forms of internal and external communication
are harmonized as effectively and efficiently as possible, so as to create a favorable basis for


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