Archives for category: Public Relations

After receiving such positive reviews from How To Find The Perfect PR Job: Part 1, I found it necessary to continue with a Part 2. Readers commented how it helped them in their job search and for that reason, I wanted to  offer a few more tidbits of information that will help anyone, not just PR professionals, in the job search. Before finding a job or pursuing any particular career path, I find it imperative to do your research. Research is just as important as having a professional and polished resume and aids you in showing your best self in an interview. Why?

  1. Research will help you craft your resume. If you look at the job description, job responsibilities, job qualifications and duties associated with the job, that should help you decide whether or not you want to apply. If then, you decide you want to apply, knowing this information will allow you to draw on similar past experiences that will position yourself as a better candidate for the job. It’s time consuming but ideally, a resume should not be like a cattle call. Each resume should be tailored to fit each job you apply to. That heightens your chances of getting the job because you have aligned yourself with the professional attributes which the job is seeking. Also, to be honest and responsible, do not lie on your resume. I have heard horror stories of people getting their dream job and getting fired because their resume information was not true.
  2. Research will also allow you to know learn more about the company, its history, motto, code of conduct among other things that are pertinent when interviewing for any position. Your research does not stop once you write your resume. If you get to the second phase of the job search—which in many cases is the interview—you then should use the information used to form a greater understanding of the company. Also, in an interview, it shows that you are very interested in the company and have taken the initiative to learn, if not detailed information, the basics of the company. The goals of the organization, how many branches do the office have, how long has the organization are all things that you should know to have a better idea of the company.
  3. Research could potentially put you in contact with members of the organization which could lead to informational interviews. Informational interviews give you an overview of what it is like to work for that company, in that department, in that office, etc. In an informational interview, you speak to someone who is working in the career field in which you want to work. So, for example, if you want to work in fashion pr, you should try to get an informational interview with someone in that field. Hearing personal testimonies from someone who has the job/career you are in hopes of getting, puts flesh on the career and makes it more real. It allows you to ask those questions that you may feel uncomfortable asking in more formal interview setting. For example,
    is there a lot of competition between workers, do workers hangs out outside of work; do you enjoy your job—why or why not? All of these things help to provide a clearer sense of how it is to have that job at that company. However, for a variety of factors, what a worker says should not be taken 100% as the Gospel for a factor of reasons. If they hate their job, they may not be the best person to ask.

These are just some of the reasons why research is imperative in the job search for any job.

I hope this helps! If it does retweet it or like it.

M.S.

While on my flight back to the States, I sat by a friendly lady who happened to be a PR Consultant. She worked for 15 years in the public relations industry, beginning with a salary of $19,000 and ending at $70,000 before she left work due to her want to start a family. Surprisingly, that led into a wonderful discussion as we discussed life, job hunting, and how to find the PR job for which you are looking. I wanted to share it with you since I found it helpful. I have also added some things I have learned while job searching. Even if you are not interested in PR, the advice here is applicable to other career searches.

1.)    Before you begin your job search, know what kind of career you want. Where do you see yourself? What lifestyle you wish to live?  For example, if you want to work in public relations, do you want to work in-house at an agency or out-house for a specific company? What kind of public relations do you want to do: fashion, government, business to business, consumer, etc.?  What is your favorite aspect about public relations—press releases, event planning, media research, etc.?  You should have some answers to these questions because it will help you narrow down your job search. Each company will have its own definition of public relations, and particularly when you work in-house for an organization, their meaning of  public relations could be slightly to largely different from your perspective, so understand what you are looking for before you begin your job search. Not saying that you need to know EVERYTHING, but you should have a general gist of the type of public relations you want to do and the type of environment in which you thrive.

2.)    When searching for a job, look at the company than just the position. Many times, it pays to take a lesser position in a company that you want to work for. This is because the hardest part may be getting your feet in the door. It may be easier to begin as a secretary in the office, even though you really want to do public relations. This is because you will already be privy to information about how the organization works and you already have an advantage if a position does become available. With hard work and dedication and patience, it is relatively easy to work your way up in an organization.

3.)    When being offered a job, look at the package holistically. They may not offer you your dream salary, but what other monetary benefits are you getting: Relocation assistance? Medical coverage? Stock options? Pensions? For example, medical coverage is costly, so if your company is offering you that, then that could be worth about ¼ of your actual salary, depending on your plan and how good the coverage is.

4.)    Match 401K immediately when entering a job. (Put the max in) This helps to secure your financial future especially when we do not know if our generation will receive social security benefits. According to the Wall Street Journal, “A 401(k) is a retirement savings plan sponsored by an employer. It lets workers save and invest a piece of their paycheck before taxes are taken out.”  For those who do not know what a 401k plan is, I suggest you read this article by the Wall Street Journal. http://guides.wsj.com/personal-finance/retirement/what-is-a-401k/

5.)    Network, Network, Network. Many people find jobs through networking as it sometimes is easier to get a position in a company, when a reputable person in the company can vouch for you. Need I say more? Here is an article from the Wall Street Journal to help you with networking. http://blogs.wsj.com/indiarealtime/2012/01/13/career-journal-how-to-make-networking-work-for-you/?KEYWORDS=public+relations

6.)    Send “thank you” emails after your interview and take their business card. Even if you do not get the job, you never know when having their contact information will come in handy.

Did this help you? Do you have any suggestions you would like to share? Feel free to tweet this or like this on twitter.

With love,

M.S.

 

I hate to begin another blog with the “while I was in class” anecdote, but honestly that is where a lot of my inspiration seems to stem from now.  Bear with me a few sentences as I set the scene.

***

A  good public relations campaign should identify three to four critical issues, but only address 1 of those issues. My lecturer began to give a very sound and logical explanations as to why that was the best way to run a campaign. However, one of the reasons she gave as to why seemed a little odd–not incorrect–just the word choice got to me. She stated that depending on the budget, it would be impossible to run certain pr campaigns on a very small budget.  She said it would be impossible.

Under my breathe, I stated, “Well, nothings impossible.”

My classmate and friend sitting next to me replied, “That’s such an American thing to say.”

She did not say it rudely. In fact, she said it with a smile on her face as she is very helpful in helping me understand British customs, words, and their perceptions of Americans.

Her comment made me smile.

Looking back at the evolution and development of America, we have made our name of off making the impossible, possible.

At one point in time, people thought it was impossible to do many things, such as have an engine powered airplane or an electronic hand help calculator or have a portable photographic camera, but these among many other things are what America has shown as possible.

But I believe the attitude of “anything is possible” does not rest solely in the minds of those who live in the “land of the free and home of the brave.”

Every day, many of us around the globe do something that is considered impossible:

 Beating a terminal illness. Living after a horrible car wreck. Beating that old drug habit. Learning to love again after being in a horrible relationship. Awaking from a coma. Reuniting with long lost loved ones. Passing that final exam.

All of these things to some may seem impossible, but for those who dare to believe in the opportunities of life, they know  just how possible, the impossible can be.  

Yes, I agree with my lecturer that a pr campaign with a little budget is limited in it’s campaign strategies/tactics, but like Whitney Houston sang in Cinderella, “Impossible things are happening every day.”

Those who dare to dream have come up with wonderful inventions around the globe. Visit this link for more information: http://corporate.britannica.com/press/inventions.html

The Center for Global Public Relations

Image via Wikipedia

In my lecture that focused on international public relations, we discussed the 9 generic principles Vercic,L .Grunig & J Grunig (1996) argued might help the development of any Global PR program. Their ideas added to the theory of excellence in public relations and communications management by J Grunig ( 1992).

Those 9 generic problems are as follows (taken from lecture given bySarah Williams, MMU):

“PR understood and practiced according to the two-symmetrical model

PR involvement in strategic management

Empowerment of PR  in dominant coalition or in direct reporting relationship to top management
 
PR function treated as management function independent of other functions
 
Symmetrical system of internal communication
 
Managerial role of practitioners
 
Knowledge potential for the managerial role and symmetrical PR
 
Diversity embodied in all roles
 
Integrated PR function”

However, Vercic,L .Grunig & J Grunig (1996) noted how the development of communications program must take into consideration the local conditions/consrtaints of that country.

While sitting in class, I could not help but think about the Center for Global Public Relations, located at the University of North Carolina- Charlotte within the Communication Department.

I have worked there over a year now, and within our office, I believe that we embody these characteristics. For example, our internal communication is definitely symmetric and less of a top-down approach. We communicate regularly with daily and weekly updates along with our weekly meetings. Even for those who are abroad or away, the main office still keeps us in touch with the weekly activities and progress of the Center. We work together to come up with the best strategies and tactics for whatever job is at hand.

Currently, ne of the many things we are working on is the Second Annual Global Research Conference of the Center for Global Public Relations. The Conference will be held on  April 20, 2012, in Charlotte, North Carolina, U.S.A.  Abstract submissions of scholarly papers and case studies/position papers should revolve around the conference theme, “Communicating Beyond Borders: Building Relationships Among Corporations, NGO’s and Governments.”

Don’t take my word for it, if you are ever in the area, feel free to stop by our office and meet our team. If you have any inquiries or just want to learn more about what the team does, visit http://cgpr.uncc.edu/  for more information.

Infographic on how Social Media are being used...

Image via Wikipedia

Facebook. Twitter. Blogs. Youtube. Flickr. Myspace. Wikipedia. Linkedin

These are some of the social media devices that have been born in the last decade or so (give or take some time) and it appears that they are not going anywhere anytime soon.

Like many, I was NOT a fan of social media. Sure, I used facebook to keep upwith my friends, family and colleagues. Yes, I even used the antiquated Myspace to listen to music and view pictures. But now, it seems as if you are not linkedin (no pun intended) to social media outlets then you are way out of the loop.

The new forms of social media allow for greater transparency that crosses space and time. No longer do we have  to wait for the mailman to drop the daily newspaper off or sit and tune in to the 5 or 6 or 7 o’clock news to stay in touch with local, national and international news. Now, information is literally at our fingertips. Which can be a good and not so good thing.

The touch of a button could almost instantaneously yield enough information on any subject that if we tried to read it all, we would all be blue in the face by the time it was over. Also the fact that anyone can post information on the world wide web creates issues with the credibility and validity of the content that we read. Nevertheless, the main benefit is that we have it. Information is available to us in almost limitless ways and it is up to us as consumers of it to do so with discretion.  As technology continues to progress, I can only imagine what all we will be able to access at the click of a button.

But,

What about those who are not technologically savvy? What do we do? Where do we go for help? When I moved to the U.K, I quickly realized how necessary it was to be informed and in tune with social media. In fact, at one of our first classes, we were urged to get a linkedin account, make sure our twitter and fb were professional and start subscribing to news subscription. Also, it appeared that at least half of my classmates blogged (something that I had only recently started a few weeks prior.)

I felt overwhelmed due to my ignorance regarding social media. I knew how to access what I needed, when I needed. But, I had never once considered entering the conversation that occurs via social media. Jobs are found. Professional and personal connections are made. And I believe that those of us who are not tuned into social media may be missing out on very good opportunites.

After all, when working in the realm of PR, and many of fields for that matter, how are you going to make small talk over the water cooler or in the elevator if you do not know what the people in your field are discussing.

Social Media seems here to stay, so you may as well learn how to use it. It will make you more marketable and definitely more competitive in the job market.

Hey Ma,

Aw, you miss me;  I miss you too.   School is going really well actually. I created my first PR Campaign today; I realize that there is a lot I don’ t know about Public Relations, but I am willing to learn as much as I can while here. I did not know there were so many facets to pr. I knew there were a lot of different activities that a pr person does, but I did not know I could do corporate pr,consumer pr,  fashion pr, community relations pr, governmental pr, work for a pr agency, business to business pr, charity pr, or I could do freelance pr…..as you can see there are a lot of options, so I hope to actually gain experience in quite a few of those fields while here.

Today, we had a networking event with a lot of different pr firms in manchester. I made about 4-5 really good contacts: business to business pr, consumer pr, governmental pr, corporate pr. Each of them stated they were willing to take me on for a few wks so I could gain some experience. That would be great! Experience is the only way you can make it in PR.

Classes start on Monday. I look forward to it but I know it will be quite a bit of work but myclassmates are very friendly and I think we will get along well. Some of my classmates have already stated how they wish I would stay the entire school year 😉 We all went out tonight. It was fun and calm enivronment so we got to talk with each other.

As always, I am still doing a million things at once: working on thesis research, trying to get organized, still learning my way around Manchester; planning trips to visit different parts of the city, etc.

Also, one of my flat mates is really nice. She brought me a bunch of stuff from freshers fair (a thing that first year students go to in order to get free stuff, information, etc.) when we skype, I will tell you what all she brought me. She is actually the latest addition to the “New Friends” section of my blog.

Love always,

Morgan