Your resume is a work in progress. Even those at the highest levels in their career are constantly changing and critiquing their resumes. So don’t worry if its not perfect right out of college! When writing a cover letter be sure to avoid using ‘I’, and remember that you are not trying to land an interview, not the job.
The job interview could be anything from a large group interview to a one-on-one interview or a webcam or telephone interview. The most important part about the interview is being prepared to answer tough questions and being sure of yourself without seeming arrogant. Appropriate dress is considered to be conservative dress, at least for the first interview, even if the job is casual labor. Ladies, no cleavage or thighs. Guys, no bare arms or chest hair.
Your portfolio is very important because it is the compilation of the projects and business work that you are the most proud of. The portfolio should represent your creative and writing abilities as well as showcase your hard work, even if they are just class projects right now. Remember to assemble a “leave behind” for each job interview. While hard copies are fine, many people are choosing to create online versions.
Public relations is happening all around us, whether or not we are aware of it. Reading blogs, social media comments, and reading public relations trade books are all necessary to stay current in the public relations field. Being aware of what is going on right now in the public relations field will give you an edge in a job interview and keep your company in the knowledge loop.
The first time you meet a potential employer or a fellow interviewer a good first impression could make or break your chances at advancing. Remember to be confident and sure of yourself in the interview, but don’t come off as a know-it-all. Also come prepared to prove why you deserve the job more than the next applicant.
For my informational interview I contacted Ty Mays via Twitter. Ty is the CEO of Perfect Pitch Public Relations based out of Atlanta, Ga. She was kind enough to answer many of my questions about the day to day life of a public relations practitioner and gave me some great advice.
When writing down the names of the interviewers be sure to check the spelling of names and remember that even common names have many different spellings. Ex: Amy, Amie, AimeeAlso, if you have horrible or illegible handwriting, typed Thank You notes are also appropriate. Just be sure to sign your signature.
In my experience using these two social media agents, Twitter and PROpenMic, I have found that the possibilities are endless in reaching experts in the public relations field. Twitter has allowed me to personally contact various public relations professionals that otherwise would have been impossible to connect with. PROpenMic has also presented many internship opportunities as well as allowing for peer-to-peer public relations students and faculty interactions.
For my trade book review I read Richard Laermer’s book, Full Frontal PR. This book is a required text for many public relations students, offering a basic overview of what public relations is and how to use it to promote your brand. I would highly recommend this book for anyone interested in public relations or for those seeking clarification on PR jargon.
In closing, I found the practicum course very entertaining and informative. I would definitely recommend it for all graduating PR majors. The End
The Top 10 Things I learned in Practicum PRCA 4711 Final <br />Amy Gemmel<br />November 30, 2009<br />
1. How to write a Resume & Cover letter <br /><ul><li>No more than one page, no weird fonts
Education trumps Experience, at least for fresh out of college</li></li></ul><li>2. Perfecting Job Interview Skills <br />Only bring essentials into interview room<br />Bring a list of questions about the company<br />DO NOT ask about salary<br />Dress appropriately <br />
3. Creating the Perfect Portfolio<br />Tailor portfolio to the job requirements<br />Use tabs for easy flip through<br />Assemble a variety of pieces that show creativity and writing abilities <br />
4. Staying Up-to-Date with PR Events<br />Important to be aware of the “online chatter” about your brand <br />Subscribe to RSS feeds for public relations blogs<br />Read public relations trade books <br />
5. Making First Impressions<br />Be on-time (Which is early by most standards)<br />Have a firm handshake <br />Avoid bad breath <br />Don’t fidget <br />Don’t be afraid to ask questions <br />
6. Tips from the Experts <br />Nuggets of Wisdom from Ty Mays <br />Look for an internship with a PR agency<br />Seek out ways to enhance your professional development regularly<br />Shadow professionals as often as possible <br />
8. After the Interview<br />Be sure to write down the names of all interviewers <br />Send an email Thank You immediately<br />Follow-up with a hard copy, hand written Thank You ASAP <br />
9. Networking online <br />Twitter:<br />“Follow” as many PR professionals as possible<br />Look for opportunities to broadcast PR current events<br />PROpenMic:<br />Internship opportunities <br />Peer-to-peer advice, even from PR faculty<br />
10. PR Trade Books <br />Richard Laermer – PR genius and author of several PR books<br />What is PR? This book can tell you all about it!<br />The guidebook for all things PR and marketing your “brand” <br />