4 Career Building Tips For New PR Professionals (That Can’t Be Achieved Behind a Computer)

Strong Career Moves For New PR Professionals

It’s back to school time here in New England and across much of the country. Back to school season is often a time of reflection. I have most recently been thinking about what advice I’d give to an emerging generation of new PR professionals that have recently entered the workforce full-time.

In my early PR years, I spent a lot of time absorbing information from and closely monitoring the behaviors of senior staffers around me. I also spent time a significant amount of time reading national, local, and industry news to better understand what the media covers and what pieces meld together to create an impactful story. Undoubtedly, it was time well spent. Still, looking back, I’d recommend a different route to new PR professionals–whether they are students or entry-level workers.

Step Away From The Computer

Here are my top four recommendations for new and entry-level communications and PR professionals who are ready to get out from behind their desk and build a strong foundation for their career:

  • Drink a lot of coffee with other people. More specifically, identify professionals who have had more time in the seat and have achieved the kind of success that you are trying to achieve on your own accord. Take the time to get to know these people over coffee. They may, in time, become mentors who can help guide your approach to career growth and personal success.
  • Get active and give back to your community. Find a local organization with ties to a personal passion of yours. Volunteering will enable you to build personal, passion-fueled relationships within your local community, which may pay dividends on the business front as well.
  • Explore potential board opportunities. Many organizations have board openings specific to a younger generation of professionals. These emerging leader board opportunities allow you to directly liaise with some of the most senior business leaders–the type of leaders that you likely won’t have access to in the early years of your career.
  • Don’t shy away from thought leadership. Even though you don’t have decades of experience, you still have personal experiences and opinions that will be valuable to clients, your company, and other future or new PR professionals. Identify how you can enhance the conversation through your insights. For example, you can contribute to internal trainings or industry insights shared through LinkedIn blogging. 

Look Past Daily To-Dos

While we all need to spend a lot of time behind our computers to simply get work done, we must also think about stepping away and focusing on something bigger than day-to-day to-dos. Whether you are among the new PR professionals or the communications veterans, doing so will allow you to build your personal brand, foster career growth, and establish brand recognition for your organization.

Katie McGraw
Vice President, Healthcare Practice


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