Are you looking for an exciting career in the fast-growing public relations industry?
Are you a recent college graduate with your eyes on working creatively with a team of like-minded people?
Are you stoked to join one of the top-10 most stressful fields of work in America?
Did that last question catch you off guard, because its true.
We do not talk about it often in our industry, but PR can challenge your stamina and your will.
So what does a PR professional do on a daily basis?
Most days, it is simple: We consult with clients in a variety of industries. We propose interesting story ideas to producers, reporters, and other media gatekeepers. We build creative content and share with social media fans online.
It’s important to note the words ‘in a variety of industries.’
This is the crux.
If you work for an agency that supports many different companies, you are responsible for learning a variety of business languages, dealing with a carousel of personalities, and a diverse set of expectations.
I describe it as working a morning shift at McDonald’s, an afternoon shift at Wendy’s, and an evening shift at Jack-in-the-Box.Sure they all sell burgers, but each company has its processes and expectations. That’s a lot of hats to wear.
If you are a recent graduate or early-stage professional, how can you avoid the burnout that often accompanies a career in public relations?
I offer you three basic rules:
- Structure your time: Plan for tomorrow today. Know your assignments before starting your day and do not deviate from the daily mission. Time is your most precious commodity. Protect it at all costs.
- Embrace criticism: Art is subjective. PR can be an innovative and artistic field. Not everyone will respond to your creative ideas with applause. Some people will challenge you to think critically or analytically about your counsel. You can see this as discouraging and stressful or rise to the challenge. Only one option will leave you fulfilled. Choose that one.
- Preparation = Confidence: If you are a young professional you may feel intimidated by co-workers or peers or clients who have more experience or credentials. Don’t be. Your insight is valuable, but you have to work for your respect in the industry. Since gaining experience takes time you can compensate with your preparation and education.
The internet affords you an infinite amount of data, research, and industry trends to consume and apply. Do what other people will not do in our industry and study. Then bring that knowledge to the table for discussion. Don’t just tell people what you “want” to do. Tell them “why” you want to do it. People can debate your ideas but not the facts. Hit them with the facts first and then your ideas. They will not know what hit them.
Regardless of how you approach your career in public relations, have fun. Like any industry, you will spend a significant chunk of your life working in it. When it stops being fun, stop doing it or readjust your approach.
Cheers to your success!
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Sammis|Ochoa is San Antonio’s fastest-growing public relations and digital marketing agency. The firm is headquartered in San Antonio and serves clients in Austin, Houston and San Antonio. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 210.390.4284 to amp up your PR game!