It’s not always easy being a young PR pro in the making. Initially, I chose to switch to PR because I felt it would be a great way to transition my current skill set to a career with more opportunities for growth. Through journalism, I have developed a strong background as a researcher and writer on strict deadlines.
Not surprisingly, learning how to apply my current skill set in the PR world has become much more of a challenge than I had anticipated. A recent PR Daily article suggested a few words of advice to PR newbies including ask as many questions as possible, be proactive and useful, have faith and stay passionate about your work.
Now that I’ve gotten my feet wet, I have a few tips of my own:
Subscribe to publications on your media lists and read as much as possible
I’ll have to give the team props for this first tip. Whether you’re feeling slammed by the amount of tasks on your plate or you’re having a slow week, take time out of your day, even if it’s only 15 minutes, to learn more about the industries your clientele are involved in. Building a basic knowledge base will make it easier to complete assignments and will be applicable towards new clients in the future.
Motivate yourself to learn the latest tools and tricks
When you’re new to PR, there’s more to consider than the traditional techniques. Take the time to learn the latest social media analytic tools and platforms.
Become as involved as possible
Don’t be scared to get your hands on everything whether it’s putting together lists of editorial calendars or learning how to pitch media. If you know there’s something you’re really great at, such as social media outreach, share your knowledge.
Listen and acknowledge your strengths and weaknesses
Remember some things are going to come easier than others, which could lead to some sad pouty faces at your desk. Be willing to acknowledge your strengths and weaknesses, we all have them. Ask more questions and listen to your co-workers when you’re struggling with your tasks. Chances are they’ve been in your shoes before and have great advice for moving forward. When you do something well, give yourself a nice little pat on the back.
Never forget the importance of teamwork
Last, but certainly not least, I’ve learned it is to remember how to work within a team. One of the most rewarding opportunities I’ve been given by joining Crossroads PR is to work with a group of seasoned professionals. As a PR newcomer, you should not only lean on your team to guide you through assignments when you’re confused, but be ready to support them when necessary. Communicate and be open minded to different working styles. More importantly, be mindful you’re contributing towards a bigger cause—creating a stronger PR agency.
Despite the challenges along the way, I am still enthusiastic and excited to grow as a PR professional. Of course, I’ll have to be sure I practice what I preach.
The good news is, three months after swapping media for PR, I can verify with confidence the dark side has more cookies.