It is six months since this government took office facing daunting tasks, and the road seems long. Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva, despite the polls, deserves credit for his leadership. It's cold and lonely at the top.
One must not forget that at those altitudes national success and failure are finely measured, and simple mistakes kill.
Up there in the present economic chill his team emulates the highest-performing organisations, where a worse team would wallow in dysfunction.
Should one venture to take issue with the polls, they reflect between the lines on significant finding, which to me is very obvious : that people do not really distinguish the news in the dailies and weeklies pertaining to the actions of the government from its actual achievements.
This is not the fault of the pollsters or the questionnaires. It's all about marketing-communication strategy in its highest form done effectively !
In our overcrowded information society, the people want to know the results, and results relevant to their hopes, their dreams ; the clamour goes up from the streets for evidence of change in the tangible form.
The challenges facing the government after the budget debate will separate the prime minister on his summit from the charlatans in his leadership.
Once policy is set, this government must make sure that steps towards improvement and expectations ate being communicated properly and concisely in the language of the streets.
It must not sing the sweet music of hope in the people's ears, but simply tell them the truth.
As it is, most of the weaknesses lie in the indecision and compromise which, sadly and disappointingly, are turning the economic battles of all Thais into political-faction strife among a few political warlords who will risk and tarnish the country's image further.
Public relations is not strategically places to sound a central theme vital to effective change for the better. The good news is not surfacing.
At the highest level, what one needs is simply a back-to-basics theory of integrated marketing communication. It seems the disintegrated channels created by government agencies are overburdening the public mind : scarcely any effectively target the truth behind their messages.
Marketing communication at its highest level requires the skill of inspiring perseverance. Government leaders must not mistakenly focus on motivational speeches and backup materials to get people past the difficulties.
People want more : they want "the truth" no matter how hard it may sound. Political and business leadership abounds in grey areas and perceived corruption.
The government must manage the emotions of the people to instil perseverance and belief in what the prime minister is saying decisively and directly, without any shilly-shal-lying.
Creating belief is the art of mastering the truth.
This government badly needs to show the public and the coalition alike that the prime minister is maturing into a young leader of the first water who can be counted on.
Leadership demands fast action and accountability.
In machiavellian terms, he must be able to balance the control of his team members, despite obstacles and resistance in the marketplace or in the political and marketing battles of mind.
At stake is our image as a country and a brand in the world arena.
There are millions out there who truly "believe" in the prime minister and the new government. Furthermore, there exits no resistance from the media to change. Thus if the government fails to get its act straight and continues with its present communication strategy, the momentum will shift, and so will the media paradigm.
Let's hear some good news and let the truth unfold. Private firms turn out new products, new brands and brand extensions or new services every week : watch the commercial breaks, see the new TV commercials and the ads in the newspapers. Why can't our leaders on high do the same ?