Millennial Communication Professionals Study Published in International Journal

The Plank Center for Leadership in Public Relations and the Institute for Public Relations co-sponsored a study to examine the millennial generation from a talent management perspective.

The co-sponsored millennial generation study by The Plank Center for Leadership in Public Relations and the Institute for Public Relations was published in the International Journal of Strategic Communication.

Titled, “Maximizing the Potential of Millennial Communication Professionals in the Workplace: A Talent Management Approach in the Field of Strategic Communication,” the article provides a deeper understanding of millennial communication professionals’ (MCPs) generational attributes as related to their workplace values, and how such values affect key phases such as recruitment, engagement, development and retention in talent management in strategic communication.

Drs. Juan Meng, associate professor at the University of Georgia, and Bruce K. Berger, professor emeritus at The University of Alabama, recruited two national panels to run comparative analyses with one panel consisting of MCPs and the other panel consisting of communication managers and executives who have direct working and/or supervising experience with MCPs.

Meng, said: “We must recognize these generational differences. At the same time, it is more important for us to draw from these differences to build an effective talent management system that brings the best qualities out of MCPs to enhance our profession to be more diverse and inclusive.”

To download and read this journal article, please visit the International Journal of Strategic Communication. For more findings related to this 2017 project, please visit The Plank Center’s website.


About the Millennial Communication Professionals Research Project

The study used the theoretical framework of talent management to measure generational attributes and values that were meaningful in the context of studying MCPs in the workplace. Two online surveys were designed in this study. The first was targeted to MCPs to examine self-perceptions about workplace values and attributes, engagement, leadership capabilities and development, and recruitment and retention drivers. The second survey was targeted to their managers (MGRs), who supervise MCPS and share their perceptions of MCPs on these topics. Appropriate panels of 420 MCPs and 420 MGRs were recruited in the field of public relations and communication. Respondents represented diverse organizations and survey questions were validated in previous studies.

About The Plank Center for Leadership in Public Relations

The Plank Center for Leadership in Public Relations is the leading international resource for practitioners, educators and students who are passionate about advancing their careers and the public relations profession. Led by a national advisory board of leading educators and practitioners, the Center develops and recognizes outstanding diverse public relations leaders, role models and mentors to advance ethical public relations in an evolving, global society. Founded in 2005, the Center is named after Betsy Plank, the first lady of PR. Betsy’s legacy and vision continues on in the Center’s programs and initiatives to advance the profession and public relations education. For more information, please visit

About the Institute for Public Relations

Founded in 1956, the Institute for Public Relations is an independent, nonprofit foundation dedicated to the science beneath the art of public relations™. IPR creates, curates, and promotes research and initiatives that empower professionals with actionable insights and intelligence they can put to immediate use. IPR predicts and analyzes global factors transforming the profession, and amplifies and engages the professional globally through thought leadership and programming. All research is available free at and provides the basis for IPR’s professional conferences and events.