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From PR Coordinator to PR Executive in 5 easy steps

It’s been over a year since I last spoke about starting a new job in a new city and what a year it has been! From travelling the country, to working with high-profile Aussie celebs, the last year has been rewarding to say the least. My biggest achievement to date however has to be progressing from PR and Influencer Coordinator to PR Executive. Undertaking my first full time role since graduating university and learning the balance of a full-time job along with adult responsibilities is never easy however the age-old saying goes – hard work really does pay off!

If there are five things I would tell anyone before starting their first role who intend to progress their career in the PR industry it’s the below;

  1. Feedback is golden, soak it all up

Feedback can often be perceived as one of the most daunting aspects of a job, however constructive feedback is a chance to improve and develop more than anything else. Utilise incremental reviews and consider them a chance to regroup between yourself and your seniors as it’s an excellent way to reflect on your progress and focus on what skills you need to improve on. Working as part of a smaller team within a boutique PR Agency as opposed to a multinational one is beneficial for many reasons. It’s an opportunity to gain maximum exposure across a broad range of client work, with your hard work never going unnoticed. If you do work in a smaller PR agency, communicate with your seniors daily to seek advice on how best to complete certain tasks or overcome obstacles.

  1. Great ideas don’t just come between 9-5

Whenever we need to brainstorm ideas here at InsideOut PR, I always suggest scheduling the brainstorming sessions one week in advance to give team members time to do their research and gather ideas from external sources. It can often be tricky to come up with creative and realistic ideas on the spot, but analysing external brand campaigns and current news headlines is an excellent way to put your own spin on things and find that lightbulb moment. I vividly remember proposing my first TV segment to the team which came from an article I saw on Facebook and it was a hit! When scrolling through social media, the newspaper or even when going about your daily life, look out for things that could potentially form the basis of your next best campaign. A true PR guru thinks creatively around the clock and can spot a publicity stunt from a mile away!

  1. Take advantage of the busy times

Public relations is often considered one of the most fun industries to work in however people often underestimate how fast paced it can be. From going above and beyond to deliver client results to dealing with incoming media opportunities that can change at the drop of a hat, every day is never the same. Last-minute campaign ideas are a regular occurrence in our Sydney office which are usually led by senior members of the team. This encourages junior employees to use their own initiative and step-up to other tasks when needed most. Although this can be stressful at times, it’s important to remember that this is the best time to prove your capabilities – and that’s how we grow!

  1. Fall in love with making a to-do List

It may seem like a no-brainer but having a good task management system is key to maximising productivity (and managing the 100 tabs you have open in your brain). Although responsibilities and tasks can be similar across campaigns, it’s important to stay nimble and act fast on incoming client and media enquiries to ensure each campaign receives the best outcome. The simple things like being asked to send a follow up email by a colleague may seem easy however it’s the seemingly simple tasks that can’t be forgotten. As a bonus, a to-do list is an excellent way to keep track for your timesheet (speaking from personal experience here).

  1. Engage with the media on a daily basis

This past week when Facebook announced Australian news platforms were banned from sharing articles, I was devastated. Not only would this affect the media coverage our clients could potentially receive, news pages were my sole use for Facebook. I would scroll on my morning commute to catch up on the latest breaking news stories. I will admit, I am one of those people who loves to know what’s going on in the world and of course love to ask the team daily what their thoughts are on the latest Prince Harry and Megan drama (que the eye roll). Reading the news daily to become aware of what’s trending and also educating yourself on who’s covering what topics is the best way to develop new ideas for your clients and reach the most relevant journalists.

Call me crazy, but I am a HUGE believer in manifestation. Anything is possible if you believe in it. Finding out what will help you reach your long-term career goals and putting processes in place is key to nailing that promotion you’ve been dreaming of. Best of luck!

By Sarah Meenan – PR and Influencer Executive at InsideOut PR and #AsSeenON

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