“I would like to work in the media”….a familiar, popular and welcome refrain from under and post graduates looking for the work placement/internship they so desperately need for the holy grail of “experience”.
After many years in the business, and “not so long ago” in the same position, I am content when helping the fledglings start to soar; we need them! It’s a mutual feel-good thing.
So, when a call from a friend’s friend’s son in Paris (third year uni placement; one year to go!) was booked in for a 20-minute chat on “What is a Public Relations agency today and how do I get there?”, I admit I gave it minimal thought until the ringtone rang.
My, he had some simple questions which certainly made me think for longer than the 20-minute call! What does PR and/or public relations actually mean today? Press relations or media relations? What is a full service marketing and PR agency? A media shop? A marketing agency? A social media/content agency? The list was long! What do they all do and how are they different?
Without spending my blog word count (I know the proven concentration limits!) explaining my approach, it came down to this. If you like people, if you like writing, if you are creative and inquisitive, if you can look into eyes, if you can talk with confidence, if you can listen, if you can organise, if you love life…you are halfway there! After all, you are relating to your public…your client, your team, your journalist…you just have a fantastic range of communication avenues to explore and employ now. You are a human; how difficult can it be to “talk” to another?
Postscript – his last question, “What do you dislike about your career in public relations?” For once, I was stumped. Absolutely nothing! After all, I like a chat!