A work in PRogress – my Critical Reflection

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At one point or another, every student has doubts. Mine were six months ago.

It had been a journalism-heavy year and I was wondering if I’d chosen the right degree – my only interaction with PR had been a case study assignment and to be honest I wasn’t even that sure what PR was.

So now as I’m typing that I couldn’t be more certain of anything in my life, what’s changed?

In truth, our Digital Communications module threw me into the deep end and we took part in experiments that I’d never have done alone. While not all of them have worked – our hijacked Twitter chat with Rich Leigh springs to mind Richard!! – they’ve helped me embrace several key aspects to PR that I previously hadn’t seen. I truthfully enjoyed all of them.

When I joined LinkedIn a few months ago, I was only connecting with the obvious people – colleagues, lecturers, class mates – and then I realised I was using it completely wrong. Instead of focusing on the present, why not focus on the future? I started forming connections with professionals in the industry, people that I can talk to and learn even more from. After all, isn’t that what PR is about?

My Twitter feed has become substantially more ‘PR’ too, I’ve found it highly beneficial to read everyday stories about the industry. With @PRNews, @therealPRmoment and @CIPR_UK just a few of my favourites, I’m starting to relate to PR in a way I never have before.

While I’ve always liked talking to people, networking in a professional capacity is skill that I’m keen to develop. If the past few months has taught me anything, it’s that you don’t become successful in PR by being introverted.

Through LinkedIn and our Advertising seminars, I’ve been offered some work experience with Tangerine PR. While there, I’m hopefully going to experience both B2B and Consumer PR which will  be invaluable in determining my future career moves. I’m not experienced enough to have a preference of which side I want to pursue and I hoping that by undertaking more placements before I graduate, I can make a choice that suits both me, and my future employers best.

I started my blog in September with good intentions and for the first few weeks I was posting regularly. Then as deadlines and a busy Christmas approached, my schedule slipped fell off a cliff. I won’t make excuses but I did ask myself if it was better to consistently post sub-standard content or not post content at all (I chose the latter). As I’m in the process of reviving my blog, only time can tell if I made the right decision.

While I’m only halfway through my degree, I know what career I want and I’m determined to get there, I’ll make mistakes along the way and that’s OK because I’ve still got a lot to learn.

For now, I’m happy to be a work in PRogress.

 

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