The ICCO Stockholm Charter “Public Relations consultancies are professional service firms who help clients influence opinions, attitudes and behaviour. Along with this influence comes responsibility to our clients, our people, our profession and society at large.” Objective Counsel and Advocacy Public relations consultancies may not have interests that might compromise their role as an independent consultant. They should approach their clients with objectivity, in order to help the client adopt the optimum communications strategy and behaviour. Society An open society, freedom of speech and a free press create the context for the profession of public relations. Consultants operate within the scope of this open society, comply with its rules, and work with clients that share the same approach. Confidentiality Trust is at the heart of the relationship between a client and a public relations consultancy. Information that has been provided in confidence by a client and that is not publicly known should not be shared with other parties without the consent of the client. Integrity of Information Public relations consultancies should not knowingly mislead an audience about factual information, or about the interests a client represents. Consultancies must make their best efforts to strive for accuracy. Delivering Promises Consultancies must work with clients to establish clear expectations in advance about the output of their efforts. They must define specific goals for communications actions and then work to deliver on their promises. Consultancies must not offer guarantees which are not supportable, or which compromise the integrity of the channels of communication. Conflicts Consultancies may represent clients with conflicting interests. Work may not commence for a new and conflicting interest without the current client first being offered the opportunity to exercise the rights under any contract between the client and consultancy. Representation Consultancies may refuse or accept an assignment based on the personal opinions of the firm’s management or the organisation’s focus. Governance and Business Practices Public relations consultancies are committed to ethical behaviour and implementation of best business practices in dealing with all audiences.