3 Things Every PR Grad Should Know

30 Sep 3 Things Every PR Grad Should Know

In college, everyone tells you how hard it will be to get a job. If you’re like most of the confident PR grads I know, you won’t believe them.

After spending the past few years perfectly sculpting your resume with internships, events, and PRSSA involvement I’m sure you thought you were a shoe-in for your dream job. I know, I thought the same thing.

When I started applying for jobs I had no interest in–I finally admitted I needed help. Here are the three most important things I learned as a recent graduate looking for a job in PR:

1. Ask for the meeting. It’s flattering.

Simple fact of life: people love to give advice. Find someone that you admire and ask how he or she got to where they are. Chances are they will give you some great suggestions and may even pass your resume around.

If you’re not having any luck filling out online applications and stalking your favorite companies on LinkedIn it’s time to try something new. PR is a business for building and maintaining relationships; you’re not going to do that behind a computer screen. Don’t be afraid to ask that guest speaker who came to your class if you can meet for coffee. Shoot the alumnus who works in your field an email to ask for an informal interview. The worst thing they can say is no, but trust me, they won’t.

2. Keep up with your network

As I’m sure you already know, networking will get you everywhere. The worst thing you can do after meeting someone new is nothing. Add them on LinkedIn, send them an email saying you enjoyed your conversation, do anything to make an impression (without being annoying). The same goes for connections you already have. Just because you worked with an influencer on a project once doesn’t guarantee they’ll remember your name.  If you see someone you know mentioned in an article, send it over and say congrats. If you haven’t talked to them in a while give them a call and ask what’s new.

Keeping up with connections might not help you in the short-term but if an opportunity comes up, you want your name and that resume that you’ve worked so hard on fresh in their mind.

3. Don’t hesitate to intern…again

When I graduated college I was so excited to join the real world that it didn’t even occur to me that I might be an intern again. After having so many internships while in college I felt like I was done with that part and I was ready to move on to a “real job.” Then, after a few months of job searching, I realized that I wasn’t doing anything. I wasn’t writing, I wasn’t reading enough, I wasn’t practicing all of the things I spent years trying to learn. Finding an internship where you can actually do work, not just get coffee, will help you stay sharp on the skills you already have and will hopefully help you learn something new.

Just a friendly tip, interviewers will ask you what you’ve been doing since graduation. You really want to have something better to say than re-watching all of your favorite shows on Netflix.

Do you have great advice for post grads? What worked for you? Share your words of wisdom with us!

Sally McHugh
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