The purpose of the study is to empirically examine the practice of public relations in Greece and assess the extent to which practitioners strategically manage and contribute to the strategic management of organizations. Moreover, the study aims to reveal differences in the public relations practices across various industry sectors. Towards this end, an online survey was conducted to examine the views of 75 public relations practitioners from various business sectors in Greece. Findings indicate that most of the public relations functions examined exhibit a considerable amount of strategic focus as practitioners participate in the strategic management processes of organizations and have a say in senior management although their input is far from strategic. Moreover, they support the organizational strategy by practising two-way asymmetrical models, focusing on positive publicity, and marketing communications and employing prescriptive communication strategies. Nonetheless, they do not engage to a great extent in formal and informal research, active listening, and outcome evaluation. Thus, public relations practitioners in Greece support organizational goals and enterprise strategy by acting as strategic advisors of the senior management and operational supporters through the implementation of communication strategies. The low response rate of the survey limits the generalizability of the findings of our study, which aims to provide preliminary insights about the under researched Greek practice of public relations. The originality of the study stems from the alternative measurement tools proposed to evaluate strategic public relations and the emphasis on cross-sectional analysis.
Keywords: public relations, Greece, industry sectors, strategic management, strategic communication, practitioners