Your first job will probably not be as you would have expected (generally speaking). At that age, you probably have a limited understanding of you would LIKE to do, and what you CAN do. There are, however, some signs that can tell you if a certain type of work is for you. For the profession of Public Relations, for example, there are a few inherent qualities that some of the happiest Public Relations professionals possess, some of which we’re synthesising here.
You will be successful and content in Public Relations if:
- You like writing
Writing is a big part of the work of Public Relations professionals, and being passionate about it beforehand gives you an added edge. Whether its writing professionally or maintaining a personal blog/journal, if you’ve had a habit of articulating ideas and opinions, you’re in good stead to be in PR.
- You like staying updated
A Public Relations pro is expected to receive the most holistic picture of a news happening, the fastest. If it comes naturally to you to stay connected to several reliable news & information sources, or updated on happenings around you through social media or your personal networks, then Public Relations could be the space you want to be in.
- You are connected 24X7
The converse of the above is also true, i.e. when you are in the habit of content sharing. Social media has enabled extensive reach for interesting content and opinions to be shared with a variety of listeners. In an informal setting, such sharing can hone the tact of storytelling, which is inherent to the Public Relations profession. So the more you do it off work, the more applicable it becomes on work.
- You like to build trust based relationships
While networking skills are important in media services in general, building meaningful connections that go beyond basic utility is integral to this profession. As we’ve pointed out earlier, this is one of the few professions that has three kinds of stakeholders to be managed, and therefore those who possess the knack of building valuable relationships are very well suited for it.
- You are street smart
Besides factoring in overwhelmingly large amounts of information, the profession requires a lot of thinking on the feet. The need for this is amplified by the insight mentioned above; that you have several kinds of stakeholders with whom to liaise. Moreover, the reaction times that connected Public Relations professionals of today get could be fractionally small. This quality can bridge the dangerous experience deficit with which a lot of young professionals will enter the profession.
- You can handle stress
The profession was titled one of the most stressful jobs in 2014. Due to the dynamism, variety of stakeholders and their expectations and the stakes that are usually high for Public Relations mandates, Public Relations professionals require a mental strength to continue to push the envelope regardless the amount of stress. A good Public Relations professional will, to put it crudely, have a skin thick enough, to brush minor setbacks aside and continue with the task at hand
- You are courageous
This means that you are not afraid to take calculated risks every now and then. Public Relations professionals often need to be fearless with their creativity and execute their ideas backed with complete faith. You are a great fit for the profession if you are able to take that extra plunge that can be the difference between mild and great success.
- You settle only for excellence
The interesting environment that presence of several stakeholders around you will create, will often comprise of different standards and definitions of excellence. Therefore Public Relations professionals tend to strive for excellence in absolute sense rather than towards the expectations of their stakeholders. Like several others in this list, this trait is inherent and therefore makes for an important criteria of fitment.
- You are ethical
Public Relations professionals pride themselves in maintaining the highest standards of ethics. While this may go contrary to the belief of several outsiders, within the profession the line of ethical standards is treaded extremely carefully. This is not only expected out of young entrants to the fraternity, but also inculcated widely as the professionals therein believe in their own capabilities to deliver results rather than rely on any other means.
- You want to do different things everyday
If you like not knowing what to expect, nor having a routine well defined for you, this profession could be a good fit. The dynamism of this profession maintains a certain level of unpredictability. While some may prefer it to be more routine, this is a table stake of the profession and you are very suited for it if you like uncertainty and tackling new things.
School of Communications & Reputation (SCoRe) — India’s only institute dedicated to PR education. Know more about our PG programme in PR, and other activities we do to share PR Knowledge: www.scoreindia.org