Public relations has become a highly sought after field of work and study in the past few years. If you really want to try and break in, there are some things you should do to prepare ahead of time. Here are five preparation tips guaranteed to give you a head start on your future career.
1. Improve Communication Skills
Most of your work in public relations involves communicating. If you sometimes find that you don’t accurately get your point across, you may have a problem! Plenty of schools nearby will offer communication courses you can take. These include public speaking and professional writing. If you’re already in college, take these classes as some of your electives, or major in communications. You may be surprised what you learn.
2. Start Networking NOW
Don’t wait until you’re submitting your resumes before you begin networking. Start doing it right now! Your current friends and colleagues might be your future coworkers and managers and forward thinkers in the public relations field. Make sure you have their info saved when the time comes.
I don’t mean whip out a notepad and pen when you meet someone new, though. Just try and be friendly and meet as many new people as possible. Talk to your classmates or go out to business gatherings.
3. Focus Your Efforts
Do you know which part of public relations you like the most? Do you really like writing? Coming up with strategies? Maybe you’re most interested in new media and want to dive into social media?
Figuring out exactly what you want to do can improve your chances of making an impact on employers. Not only will it help you play up to your strengths, you can tackle your problem areas as well. This will make you a more well rounded public relations professional.
4. Look at Companies You Like
Keep a running tab of the public relations firms or companies you’d like to apply to in the future. Follow them on LinkedIn for news on the company and who is leaving and moving up. Keeping a close watch on the companies you like and admire can give you an edge when you walk in the door for an interview. If you have extended knowledge of its ups and downs over the years and the other applicants barely know the company’s name, it’s going to look really good for you.
5. Intern, Intern, Intern
Yeah, we’ve all heard the stories about interning. You don’t get paid, you get all the stupid jobs nobody wants to do, etc etc. However, interning is a great way to get your foot in the door, both literally and figuratively.
You get an up-close view of the day to day around that company’s inner workings, not to mention you’ll meet most if not all of the employees there. It may seem like a pain in the neck, but if we’re talking about securing a FUTURE job in PR, interning can show you how the industry works and let you meet lots of people to connect with later on.
This article is written by Mickie Kennedy, founder of eReleases (http://www.ereleases.com), the online leader in affordable press release distribution. Grab your free 160-page copy of the Big Press Release Book – Press Releases for Every Occasion and Industry here: http://www.ereleases.com/insider/bigbook.html