Is is better to use a PR person instead of lawyer?

With the exception of ABC Scandal (AKA “The Fixers”) and news, I don’t watch a lot of television. Usually it’s when I’m at the gym and six televisions are on that I get my fix of sitcoms and reality shows.

Last night, “Trophy Wife” was on. I normally would not have watched it, mostly due to the title (agreed upon here by Time magazine), but the story line of a lawyer asked to step in and be interviewed on camera after a huge oil spill was interesting. Living  in Florida on the Gulf of Mexico, it was also deja vu.

The funny thing was that the character, Pete (Bradley Whitford who was magnificent in “The West Wing”) was a lawyer, and not a PR person.


He sounded like a PR person. He looked like a PR person. Image


But not a PR person.

He ended up fainting and having what they thought was a heart attack during  his interview.

It ended up that he had had too many cupcakes and unhealthy snacks while preparing for the interview. It was not a heart attack.

It was actually pretty funny, and I wish the show wasn’t cancelled.


Today, when I saw this email from George Washington University about their Master’s degree in strategic public relations, I had to think that Pete
could have used this. (Along with some breathing exercises.)


5 Commandments of Strategic PR

1) Know your audience –  Communicate meaningfully, effectively and with purpose.

2) Become a conduit – Facilitate real conversations and drive timely, appropriate follow through.

3) speak through actions – Be socially responsible, transparent and proactive.

4) establish credibility – Earn trust, maintain respect and manage your image.

5) Make it count -Contribute real, measurable results and leverage data to plan your next move.


About marsha strickhouser

Plate Girl, or Marsha, is not a girl, but a full grown woman who has been collecting dishes - yes, dishes - since I was a little girl. My grandmother was a newspaper food editor, my mother was a teacher and later an antiques dealer. I am guilty of reading Southern Living magazines ... just to look at the PLATES the recipes were served on.  I have more dishes than I need, and I promise I have given plates and sets of dishes to many, many people over the years. I believe setting a festive table makes the meal better and the day or night more memorable. I live in Tampa Bay were I set my table (and the tables of as many others who let me), as well as visit restaurants, hotels and beaches where I admire and photograph all things I think are pretty.  I have my degree in journalism from the University of Miami and have worked in public relations for more than 20 years. To contact me about about a blogging relationship, please email me at

2 responses to “Is is better to use a PR person instead of lawyer?

  1. shingipreaction

    Your post caught my attention because my best friend is a lawyer and I’m a PR graduate and we never stop arguing over how we would handle a crisis. The 5 commandments are strong, true and to the point! Thanks for sharing and Scandal is a pretty awesome series!

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