By Lisa Schaefer, Associate
About Me: Three-months ago, I was an eager college grad, with minimal hands-on PR experience, hoping to get my feet wet in the public relations pool. After researching internship opportunities I found Motion PR, a small agency with a large list of clientele ranging from small startups to well-known brands. I immediately felt a connection and knew that if I didn’t grab this opportunity, someone would beat me to it. My eagerness paid off, because following an interview MPR offered me an Associate position! As I headed into the offices for my first day with my laptop and notebook in hand, I thought I had a pretty good idea of what it was like to work in the PR industry. An endless amount of media lists, calendar listings, pitches and blog posts later, this opportunity has put me to the test and made me realize how much I enjoy learning and working in the industry. I know that this experience will open many doors for me as I continue to pursue my public relations career.
Stand-out Motion PR Moment: One might imagine a typical day at the office for an intern would include trivial tasks such as making copies or running to Starbucks to grab your boss a frothy latte at precisely 105 degrees with 2, not 3 Splendas. While I pictured this scenario coming into the job, right off the bat I was given the opportunity to work on countless projects for well-known, prominent brands and organizations and no one ever asked me to make a run to Starbucks. My proudest moment was when I was able to secure a story piece in the Chicago Examiner for Soundproof Chicago and Triple Threat Film Fest. My extensive research and persistence paid off and knowing that I was able to secure coverage for some of our great clients is highly gratifying.
Lesson learned: Always check your grammar! I cannot stress how important it is to make sure your work is error-free. Whether you’re sending a casual email or pitching a media member, make sure your work is grammatically correct and your punctuation is perfect. I will admit I have been a victim to haphazardly completing an assignment to meet a strict deadline, but I’ve found it is often much more beneficial to turn in a project a little later than promised to ensure it is “client-ready,” as insiders may say. Just make sure you give your supervisor a heads up to expect the assignment a little later than planned. Your work, no matter how miniscule the task, is not only a reflection of you as an individual but it also reflects upon the business you represent. Ultimately, you want to drive success not hinder it.
Advice for Future Interns: Prioritize your work. Working in a public relations agency can be unpredictable, to say the least. Timing is critical and even the most organized person can let due dates slip. Stay ahead of the game by taking time out of your day to create a to-do list ranking tasks according to urgency and importance. It sounds so obvious and elementary, but it will help you accomplish all of your projects on, and sometimes even ahead, of deadlines.
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