latest news and notes from dovetail

Monday
Jul212014

“We are all Denver. In this great city, our great city, everyone matters.”

On July 14, our office had the fantastic opportunity to attend Denver Mayor Michael Hancock’s 2014 State of the City Address at the beautiful Denver Art Museum. The above quote came as part of Mayor Hancock’s closing remarks after he had finished elaborating on the economic, social and cultural initiatives that have helped transform Denver into a world-class city at a speed-of-light pace. 

There are many diverse elements that seem to play into the growth and prosperity of Denver: among them, our thriving economy, our access to healthy lifestyle options and the preservation of the precious and beautiful natural resources that surround us. To be sure, these are all things that make me immensely grateful and proud to live here, having relocated to Denver during the spring of this year. But I want to key in on, in my humble opinion, perhaps the most important part of those benefits we enjoy: that they are “ours.”

The significance of community, the importance of the people that call this city home, was evident in the mayor’s speech. There was a strong sense of shared responsibility, shared shortcomings, shared success and shared pride. This sentiment resonated strongly with me due in large part to it also being a foundational concept of the work we do at dovetail every day. It was one of the first things I learned when I joined the team.

The profound impact of partnership is something with which I have become extremely familiar over the course of the past several months. Through our work, we see the dividends that it pays, but it extends far beyond the workplace. We can create more mutually beneficial outcomes together than we can on our own. And in the case of Denver, as illustrated by Mayor Hancock, the efforts of many people have made and will continue to make this city what it is today. Vibrant. Thriving. Prosperous. Together. The idea that we have a stake in one another’s success can be a powerful one.

Monday
Jun022014

The diary of a dovetail intern

My name is Ashley Karl and I am a Communication major with a double minor in Business and Spanish at Regis University. Although I am looking forward to graduating in May of 2015, I have a few things I’d like to accomplish before then. As of now, I am a member of the Regis Women’s Golf Team, vice president of the Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) and the executive vice president of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars (NSCS), Regis Chapter. I enjoy event planning and utilizing my communicative skills in a variety of settings in order to expand my experience. I love to learn and to have access to creative freedom, which is how I became interested in dovetail solutions. I am overjoyed to see where these upcoming weeks will take me in this opportunity to bring my skills and knowledge to the company.

Last week was my first week as an intern at dovetail solutions, and it has been nothing but exciting as I’ve waited in anticipation to become involved in this company. My first week was incredible as I was immediately immersed in the company, the clients, and the positive atmosphere. This is an office of people who are more than coworkers, but rather friends, which is why I think this company is so successful. They also utilize a vital tool that many companies and people fail to take advantage of: communication. In just a few short days I have noticed a distinct chemistry between the dovetail employees, and it makes for a much more enjoyable environment. In my training, I am learning about the company’s active clients and gaining information regarding what they do and what services they seek from dovetail solutions. It is interesting to see the diversity in clientele and how dovetail solutions tailors its work to each client on a personal basis, developing strategies that will ultimately maximize benefits for every client. 

As I develop a position of my own within the dovetail team, I am beginning to set goals for myself as well as expectations for the internship. I really look forward to becoming more familiar with the active clients and having opportunities to contribute to the services we provide them. I hope to gain a greater understanding of how dovetail remains innovative and fresh as a public relations firm that constantly updates social media platforms and reaches out to the community in order to create a bridge between the clients and their target audiences. I am so intrigued by the day-to-day activities and meetings that take place in the office, and I am excited to become increasingly involved throughout my time here. Personally, I think my highest expectation for this internship would be to walk away with much more knowledge regarding public relations and all that it entails. Experience is crucial and the more experience I have, the more confident I feel about transitioning into the work world. I am so thankful to have found dovetail, and I strongly believe that it will exceed my expectations and provide me with valuable opportunities.

Tuesday
Apr222014

please meet, Dave Gaylinn! our newest dovetail team member... 

What an amazing first month as a client services partner at dovetail solutions! As I get up to speed with our clients and the office, I can tell this will be a job that is a lot of fun while consistently challenging my creativity.

Before I get too deep into my first month here, I should introduce myself. My name is Dave Gaylinn. I grew up in New Jersey, graduated from Syracuse University with degrees in broadcast journalism and political science. I lived my dream working in the public relations department, either as an intern or full-time employee in professional sports from 1998-2010, including five years with the Denver Broncos. From 2011-14, I worked as the communications manager with USA Cycling, the national governing body of cycling. I thoroughly enjoyed my tenure in sports, but over time being away from my family helped me decide that a transition to a position with a little less travel.

I could not have been luckier, landing another dream job with dovetail solutions!

My experience working in sports has made clear to me that anyone’s individual success begins and ends with the success of the team. My experience here proves to me that the success of dovetail solutions certainly fits into that mold. My co-workers have been great in facilitating my transition to dovetail solutions. We pull together as a team to make sure we’re providing the best possible service to our clients in every aspect of our business.

While working in an agency certainly has its differences from my experiences in the sports world, many of the skills I’ve developed over the course of my career will continue to be honed in my new position. Working with clients in diverse industries reminds me of my experience working with several different players with various desires and goals. Some players wanted more attention than others, while others only desired the spotlight shone on certain areas of their professional career. The media is always hungry and part of my job is to feed it stories to present our clients in their best light.

Our clients are certainly among the very best that Denver has to offer, involved with extremely exciting projects in varying industries. I’ve already toured the remodeled Denver Union Station with Mayor Michael Hancock and several of the partners involved with the venture. It was awesome to hear some of the stories behind the project as we toured the building. I can’t wait for it open in the summer!

The Broncos teams I worked with were exceptional at pulling together to achieve common goals – particularly beating the Raiders! This is no different than the atmosphere among my co-workers at dovetail solutions. When one of us has a deadline or a project, we all do everything we can to share the load and make sure the goal is met.

Whether in sports or at dovetail solutions, teamwork is the key to success!

Friday
Apr042014

Handling a Crisis: Insights from Tracy Weiss of Weiss Communications

A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to attend my first of what I hope will be many monthly PRSA luncheons. It felt a bit intimidating to be an intern surrounded by so many talented and successful public relations professionals. Despite my nerves about the situation, I found it to be very exciting and beneficial, and I believe that rings true for the rest of the attendees for a number of reasons.

The PRSA luncheon was a great opportunity to meet with other communications professionals and trade updates and advice. Tracy Weise, from Denver-based Weise Communications, gave a compelling presentation on crisis communication. Through their work with The Medical Center of Aurora, Tracy and her team were on the front lines of communication following the Aurora shooting on July 20, 2012. This tragedy had a significant impact on the state of Colorado in addition to the country as a whole.

During her presentation, Tracy shared valuable advice on dealing with crisis communication. She said that when it comes to communications, it is not a question of “if” a crisis will occur, but rather a question of “when.” Without an established crisis plan, you can’t do your job as a public relations professional. Crises are inherently unavoidable and ignoring them will only lead to even more significant trouble. A thorough communications plan is crucial for successfully handling a potential emergency and should include a strategy for information transfer, task-based roles and social media.

One element of a successful crisis communications plan Tracy shared that I found particularly unique is the use of social media. While social media can be very effective for a traditional public relations plan, this is especially true during a crisis. Tracy established that crises are when anyone who doubts social media will realize its true importance and benefits. However, if your social media presence is not already established and active, it will not provide much help, so it is critical to develop a presence that is vigorous and familiar.

For distributing information during a crisis, social media can serve as a reliable outlet that audiences will trust as long as it is coming from the source itself.  For example, following the tragic Boston Marathon bombing, the Boston mayor’s Twitter handle provided frequent updates on his office’s actions in handling the crisis. Because of their frequency, authority and accuracy, these 140-character messages from the mayor’s Twitter handle were enough to satisfy both the press and public audience.

I left the luncheon feeling much more knowledgeable about crisis communication based on Tracy’s thoughtful advice and experience. It was inspirational to hear about how one team successfully managed such a difficult time. This experience has made me very excited to contribute to crisis communications plans and attend further PRSA luncheons.

Wednesday
Feb262014

word to the wise

It may come as no surprise, but one of my favorite subjects in school was grammar. Admittedly, I even took a grammar course in college as an elective. Yes, even the professor was surprised to learn that I was in that classroom by choice. But I love the structure that grammar provides. It is an area governed by right and wrong, black and white ­­– right?

That is what I had thought until this past Wednesday. During an internal meeting, the dovetail solutions team debated the meaning of  the term “bi-weekly.” One individual, who, out of the kindness of my heart will go unnamed, argued that the term is correctly used when referring to a twice-weekly occurrence. The rest of the team, including me, disagreed. In a very compelling argument, I cited the AP Stylebook, which establishes the use of “bi-weekly” to express an occurrence every two weeks, and “semi-weekly” to indicate two times per week.

While doing some research into the correct use of the term “bi-weekly,” the best advice we found stated that this issue has become so confusing that the best solution is to instead indicate actual times, i.e., every two weeks. While I still defend the position that a bi-weekly meeting occurs every two weeks, we came to a more important realization through our disagreement: sometimes being “correct” is not as important as being clear. As communications professionals, we must weigh the grammatical rules in relation to the commonly accepted use of our language, as oftentimes the two will differ.

To that end, we have decided to implement a social media campaign that will provide weekly posts related to grammar, style and vocabulary. Check in each Wordy Wednesday as we share grammar and vocabulary tips, myths and puzzles.

How did we decide on a weekly campaign? While we hope to spread awareness regarding proper grammar and style, we also realize that the rest of the world may not enjoy grammar as much as we do. Therefore, we felt a SEMI-weekly campaign might be too often. ;)

Here’s to a grammatically correct culture!