As students we take countless courses to prepare us for our future careers in public relations. Sitting in class we learn a lot about the technical and practical skills to improve our web design, craft content to engage audiences on social media and websites. All these skills are important tools for us to be successful post-graduation.
Now as I and thousands of others get ready to walk across the stage it’s time to land a professional job.
Three public relations professionals, each with more than a decade of professional experience, offered insight into what industry leaders are looking for in new hires during a recent luncheon hosted by the Dallas chapter of the Public Relations Society of America during the chapter’s 2016 annual Pro-Am Professional PR Job Shadowing program.
According to these public relations leaders, new graduates should:
Accept Change – Nothing every stays the same. With technology constantly changing at a rapid rate it is imperative that professionals in our industry stay updated on the best ways to engage members of the intended target audiences. We show our value to our clients during times of crisis.
Be Innovative – Students and young industry professionals need to volunteer for additional assignments, even if they must work late into the evening, weekends and holidays. This makes you indispensable. Being willing to assist in solving issues also demonstrates leadership.
Relationship Building Savvy – It’s not uncommon for relations professionals to build partnerships with media representatives, corporate partners, high-profile spokespeople and donors. Knowing how to properly interact with these individuals can result in the needs of stakeholders being properly met.
Excellent Communication Prowess – Communication is key in our industry. Whether it’s a written article or public speaking people in our industry must be able to deliver the appropriate message. Some young adults communicate, using emojis and slang. That will work on some advertising campaigns. It is not acceptable for professional communications to members of the media and various stakeholders.
Thank you to panelists – March of Dimes Communications Director Carmen Branch, President/CEO of Public Affairs for Hill + Knowlton Strategies James Fuller and Corporate Communications Consultant Jane Koenecke for taking the time to share their valuable insights and tips of the public relations industry.