A focus on Public Affairs: It has nothing to do with Ashley Madison but everything to do with growing your business.

In the realm of all that is political the simple term “public affairs” has seemed to find a new definition for itself which involves elected officials being caught up in tawdry internet scandals on an increasingly regular basis. The whole Ashely Madison hack has placed an exclamation point on this idea and this point of view isn’t going away any time soon for good reason. Bad boys and girls doing bad things make great headlines and that’s just a fact of life.

But what does someone involved in “public affairs” really mean? I asked myself this question as this is basically what I do now through my new business and wanting to not be caught up in the whole idea of back room deals done for a sole profit motive was something that wasn’t even a small part of my motivation in forming a company I now realize is very focused on public affairs.

So I took the easiest route and looked up the definition of public affairs on google. Yes, I am that simple and here you are: Public affairs work combines government relations, media communications, issue management, corporate and social responsibility, information dissemination and strategic communications advice. Practitioners aim to influence public policy, build and maintain a strong reputation and find common ground with stakeholders.

And so there it was. The simple act of having public affairs as your focus has at the purest sense the idea of bridging the gaps between all facets of our communities at the DNA level while maintaining a focus to “maintain a strong reputation and find common ground with stakeholders.” For me, this simple definition was manna from heaven as it completely clarified for me why I’ve chosen to do what I do.

We live in a very complicated world where things grow more and more complex every day. For me the pursuit of a life spent in the public affairs arena revolves around something pretty simple: making things easier for businesses to expand while providing jobs and opportunities for the citizens where they reside, for individuals and families to improve their lives and for communities, my own and others, to realize their full potential based on the unique assets each and every one is blessed with.

So, in the end my definition of “public affairs” may differ radically from the one defined by Ashely Madison. But somehow I’m thinking the majority of people out there would rather have another definition to choose from and ultimately the choice is yours to make.

Principal, Copenhaver Consulting LLC, former mayor of Augusta, triathlete, writer & runner focused on transforming great ideas into great actions.

Principal, Copenhaver Consulting LLC, former mayor of Augusta, triathlete, writer & runner focused on transforming great ideas into great actions.