On Tuesday, January 23, the Pub Club held its first program of 2018: Behind the Spin: PR Experts Share their Stories. The event was hosted by local PR agency Version 2.0 Communications and moderated by the company’s co-founder, Jean Serra. It brought together senior members of the Boston communications community to share their career experiences and offer advice to communications professionals of all levels.
Panelists Derek Delano (Text100), Jen Signorini (Racepoint Global) and Megan Griffin (Citizens Bank) offered invaluable advice to attendees, including:
Manage your career like a business
Of course careers are personal and all decisions will be made with an element of emotion, but if you’re struggling to determine what your next move should be – whether it’s putting yourself up for a promotion, changing jobs or even switching careers entirely – try taking a step back and coming at the decision from a more logical, business-focused headspace.
Advocate for yourself within your current role
At one point or another, you’re going to feel unhappy at work. Whether you’re burnt out from being spread too thin or not getting along with a client or team member, it happens to everyone, and your first instinct will likely be to look for a new job. But before you run for the hills, take a step back and ask yourself if this is something that could be fixed. If it is, put yourself out there and speak to your managers (or another senior-level employee, if your manager is the problem) and be honest about how you’re feeling and what your needs are. Most managers want to keep good employees on their team, and making whatever change you need (or at least coming to a compromise) is likely easier than you think.
Mentorship is key, but doesn’t have to be formal
Having a mentor can be an invaluable tool in your career. From a person to go to for advice to an expanded network, the benefits are endless. But not everyone finds that one specific person that they click with and who they are able build a long-term relationship with, and that’s ok. Instead of putting so much pressure on finding this person, keep an open mind and take advantage of less formal forms of mentorship – from the senior coworker you commute home with a few times a week to the first boss that you keep in touch with long after leaving your initial role.
Be an early adopter
New technologies come on the market every day, and it can be tough to keep up. But whenever the opportunity arises, make time to learn about new platforms and tools, then integrate them into your workflows. You never know what’s going to be the next Google or Twitter, and being an early adopter can open up opportunities for you once those solutions do gain popularity – from the chance to train senior-level employees on a solution to being considered the resident expert.
Be a “T-shaped” person
As a communications professional, there are a ton of skills required of you on a daily basis. Make it your mission to be a “T-shaped” person – one who is good at a number of skills – making up the top part of the T – but who is also an expert at one or two that they are especially passionate about – making up the bottom part of the T. Doing this will not only make you well-rounded, but also allow you the chance to explore a particular part of communications that you love.
Thanks again to all our panelists, our moderator, and Version 2.0 Communications for hosting! If you’re interested in learning more about the Pub Club, tweet us at @PubClubofNE.