PR, surprisingly not just parties and liquid lunches

My career journey began in 2013 having left Manchester University after completing only 3 months, always one to be difficult and much to my parent’s disapproval, I knew within my first week that university life wasn’t for me. Returning back to my local town of Ilkley, West Yorkshire, I set myself the small challenge of finding a job.

March 2017, nearly 4 years later I find myself at Source Marketing and Communications completing work experience with the hope of gathering a greater insight into the world of PR. With 3 years experience as a Visual Merchandiser for a luxury retailer under my belt, I decided it was time for me to leave my comfort blanket at home and finally start making some real life decisions with regards to starting a new direction in my career.

My first day at Source was a vast contrast to past work experiences, where making drinks and photocopying were my sole responsibilities; I was greeted and welcomed into the office like an old friend and with office banter flying around and an impressive collection of herbal teas (a self-confessed tea addict myself) I instantly felt at ease. Entering the office a PR novice with limited knowledge of the Public Relations industry I was eager to learn and make a good first impression. The team held a morning meeting where I was briefed on the client portfolio, enabling me to gather an understanding of the client’s objectives and the agency’s proposed strategies. It was then time for me to get stuck in and write my first press release following a specific format, style and tone - a daunting but exciting opportunity.

This short introduction to PR has given me an insight into the importance of communication both verbally and written, highlighting the powerful impact Public Relations can have on a company’s reputation through the communication and building of relationships with prospective audiences. This indicated to me that in today’s competitive market, reputation can be a company’s biggest asset, giving them a platform to stand out from the crowd.

Entering into this experience I had preconceived ideas of the PR industry, as a world of glamour, client dinners and more liquid lunches than actual days in the office. However, my time at Source has highlighted to me that the PR industry is a force to be reckoned with and has demonstrated the integral role of Public Relations in the growth and development of companies, particularly in the presence of today’s evolving digital world.

Coming towards the end of my time at Source I have learnt that working in PR requires dynamic thinking, creativity, charisma and the ability to juggle client’s needs whilst keeping your head above water; not forgetting drinking endless cups of tea to fuel your inner PR guru. On reflection my time with the team has been invaluable and I am grateful for their enthusiasm and welcoming atmosphere created upon my arrival and I look forward to more opportunities in the future, learning new skills along the way.

 

Written by Lucy Deakin, 29/03/2017