By JEANETTE NARANJO
I’m writing this on a plane bound for Washington, DC as I prepare to accept the Rising PR Stars 30 & Under Award from PR NEWS. I’m incredibly excited and humbled (thank you again, PR NEWS!) The team at my agency RockOrange, thought it would be a good idea for me to share a positive top 10 list of advice for millennials and other aspiring PR pros.
I don’t have every answer, but I know what’s worked for me, and maybe it’ll work for you!
1. Always answer the phone… on the first ring!
There’s no better way to learn the job than being on the front lines. And in our business, the front lines are the phone lines. Be eager to grab incoming calls, and take the time to really listen. Lessons can be learned from the most surprising people.
2. Show up early, stay late. First in, last out.
Whether it is with your time, or in the way you dress or speak, show your dedication to your teammates and your boss that you are aspiring for the job you want, not the job you have.
3. Always ask questions.
Something can be learned from everyone you meet. You should think before you speak, but never be afraid to ask when you do not know—the risk will outweigh a mistake down the road. People that sit quietly on the sidelines and never ask questions don’t have the answers. They’re just scared to speak up.
4. You’re only as good as your team.
Trust in them, and let them trust in you. Help elevate them, put them in a position to succeed. It’s good practice for being a leader one day.
5. Always be a team player
This sometimes may mean doing things you don’t want to do (including riding in the trunk, if you are the smallest member on the team!) Collaboration is key to taking ideas and building them into something even bigger and better!
6. Learn everyone’s name.
At RockOrange we share a building with our largest client. During my first few months with the agency, I made it a point to have a personal conversation with everyone I could—not just the executives and decision-makers, but cleaning crews, custodians, security, lunch crew, interns and everyone else. Along with just being a nice thing to do, it’s also a strategic advantage that cannot be quantified.
7. Do the stuff no one else wants to do.
If you do it now and don’t complain, you won’t have to do it for long. It’s the nature of agency life.
8. Embrace new challenges.
Not in a fortune cookie kind of way, but in a real, I’m-too-petrified-to-even-think-about-doing-this kind of way. Take challenges and learn from them to grow.
9. Don’t let yourself be pigeonholed.
Be open to diversifying your skills. It will open more doors for you in future career opportunities.
10. Most importantly, have fun!
We could have chosen to do a lot of things with our professional lives, but we picked this field. There’s a reason. At the end of the day, we’re passionate about this work and we enjoy doing it!