Life Lessons from a PR Education

The following blog post was written by Shari DaCosta, recent Temple graduate and staff member of PRowl Public Relations.

This holiday season I have a million things to be grateful for, topping the list is completing college this semester. The last four years has been a whirlwind and a tremendous learning experience, from serving as a PRowl staff member to holding several PR internships. I have gained invaluable experiences that have equipped me with the skills to not only be a successful PR professional, but also a well-rounded individual.

Here are some of the invaluable life lessons I’ve learned from studying PR:

Be Persistent: The most important lesson I’ve learned as a communications student, PR intern and PRowl staff member is to be persistent. Public relations professionals constantly have to sell their client to the media, their internal and external publics, and even convince the client that the communications plan is the correct move for the organization, so being persistent is key to overcoming any doubts from these publics. Similarly, being persistent and hardworking is key to accomplishing anything in life.

Expect the Unexpected: One of my favorite things about PR is that you never do the same work twice. With no workday being the same for a PR pro (or PR intern), I’ve learn to expect the unexpected in both my work and personal life. Having an open mind to unexpected changes will be essential to effectively handling crisis situations for clients, as well as setbacks in my personal life.

Stay Organized: As a communications student balancing classes with internships and work has taught me the time management skills essential to balancing the various demands of clients. From these experiences I’ve learned to stay a top of my schedule by prioritizing tasks, and keeping track of everything with a planner and electronic calendar and other useful organizational tools. These time management skills will be important in not only managing my work as a PR professional, but maintaining a proper work-life balance.

Know when to hold ’em, know when to walk away: Like the old Kenny Rogers’ country song says, one must know when to walk away and change the game plan. As a public relations professional, you must be prepared to switch things up on the fly, whether it’s finding a new vendor for an event after the old one flakes out at the last minute or entirely changing the communications strategy for a client. PR pros must be prepared to quickly adjust to changes with clients, the media and their work environment.

What life lessons has PR taught you?

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