PR in Everyday Life
As a PR student, I know how important image is. I also know that a PR career starts first and foremost with promoting and branding yourself. It is important to portray yourself in a positive way that will be received well by others. This is completely individual though. My idea of portraying myself in a tasteful or positive way can be completely different than another person’s perception of positive and tasteful.
This is the beauty of PR. You first and foremost brand yourself in whichever way you choose to. The way in which you brand yourself may depend on which facet of PR you want to go into, your individual personality, etc.
It is also important to build this image consistently and daily. I had a professor at Gonzaga University once ask me if I had ever worked a PR job. As a sophomore in college, I answered “no.” He then proceeded to ask me what my summer job had been. I told him I was a hostess at Eastlake Bar and Grill, a restaurant located on Lake Union in Seattle, Washington. He looked and me with a face of excitement and exclaimed, “That’s a PR job!”
My professor continued to explain to me that PR can be practiced in everyday life; that it should be practiced everyday. He completely changed my perspective on my role in my “non-career” jobs. I learned that I was practicing PR by being the face of the restaurant and by being the facet of communication between the back of the house and the customers.
Through this, I also learned that no matter how bad of a day I was having, I always needed to put on a good face at work. No matter what. I was the face of the restaurant on the nights that I worked. It was my responsibility to positively and effectively communicate with customers while also creating a positive image for the restaurant.
I completely embraced this responsibility and it has effected the way in which I carry myself on a daily basis. It taught me how to practice my PR and communication skills in jobs and situations that were not labeled as PR jobs or duties.
As a future PR professional, I embrace every opportunity I have to practice my PR and communication skills. Although customer service jobs are not labeled as PR jobs, I have used them as opportunities to learn how to manage relationships between the companies I have worked for and their target audiences. I have also learned how to turn a negative or difficult situation into a positive one by using communication and creativity to shed a positive light on the situation.
This concept also trickles over into my daily life as a student and a friend. I practice PR and effective communication skills by creating positive and effective relationships with my professors and peers. I also work hard to make sure I am viewed favorably by my professors, peers and friends. I do this by branding myself in a positive way by recognizing what is expected of me by my professors and peers and then exceeding those expectations. I also do this by learning and being mindful of each of my professors and peers preferred medium of communication, which allows me to effectively communicate with them.
I am thankful to have gone into the study and world of PR because I am a better person as a result. I am excited to further refine my communication and PR skills and put them to work in the corporate world.