Tag Archives: skills

Landing the NYC PR Internship


“Never put off till tomorrow what you can do today.” –Thomas Jefferson

Last week was my first week of missing a post in quite a while, and to be honest, I felt lost. I take my blog seriously for so many reasons, but most of all, it’s a chance for me to connect with my readers. So, I’m back and I’m hoping you’ll like the reason why I was gone!

As many of you know, I am originally from Toronto, and lately I’ve been focusing on my Masters full-time. However, after living in the city for close to 10 months, I started to seek out positions that would allow me to gain new experience. I was consistently looking for more to do (I love to be kept busy)! I think it’s important to possess a readiness to be busy in an industry like PR.

The process was long, and it’s never easy finding the right job! Now the search is over, and I’m happy to share with you that I’ve been offered an incredible opportunity at a marketing and public relations firm in the heart of TriBeCa. So now that I’ve been placed into a role, I felt as though I should share some takeaways with you. Whether you’re a recent grad searching for a summer position, or a current student that’s still hunting for some experience, I’ll share with you some tips on the process!

Be patient. Everyone knows the job search isn’t an easy process. It requires a lot of patience to sift through job descriptions to find something that suits your needs and abilities.

Be proactive. Rarely will you be sought out for a position without having applied to the job in the first place. If you’re in the process of searching for an internship, don’t delay the application process. Fix up your resume and start applying as soon as you are ready to find a job.

Be committed. Again, the job hunt is never easy and can take up a lot of your spare time. If finding a job is a priority or top goal, be sure to allot a time frame throughout your week where you are committed to searching for positions. An hour bi-weekly probably isn’t going to help you secure a position.

Be resourceful. Use your network. As PR professionals, we’re taught that forming relationships and making connections is an essential asset in our career. You’ve probably already begun
establishing a good network throughout your undergrad. Use this network you’ve built for
yourself to help facilitate the process. Ask your mentors for advice, or to keep you informed of any positions in the field that they might hear about from their fellow colleagues.

Be confident. It’s easy to get defeated by missed opportunities or never hearing back after
applying for a position. It’s important to keep in mind that a lot of candidates are up for these
positions, and not everyone is going to be suitable for the  job. Always have faith in your
abilities and accomplishments. Your skills will shine through in the right position.

Be mindful. It’s easy to apply for a number of positions all at once, and at times the process
begins to be monotonous. It’s important to keep in mind that you are searching for a position
that not only fits you, but also making sure you’re a fit for the employer. Sometimes just
applying for a position for the sake of finding a job may not always be the best strategy.
You’ll gain experience from positions that you are truly meant to work in.

Other thoughts? Tweet me @Sam__Dickson

Screen Shot 2013-11-19 at 8.48.27 PM

The Value of Blogging in Communications


“We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospection.” - Anaïs Nin

Chances are if you’re in public relations, the thought of starting a blog has crossed your mind.
More than likely, your communication classes have either required the task, or suggested it. If you’ve started one, but have fallen behind, keep reading. Even if you aren’t in PR, I’ll make a case on why you should consider the leap.


It doesn’t matter if you are a teacher, a digital strategist, or an avid baker, blogging is a great
opportunity to add experience to your resume. It enables you the opportunity to create
a brand for yourself. For those of you asking, a brand is a way to uniquely represent yourself
to the world. When you walk into a job interview, you’ve not only had a chance to improve your writing skills, you also have experience developing creative content and a narrative around yourself.

Online Portfolio.

Everyone loves a hardcopy portfolio. However, in the age of technology it is much quicker to type in a URL and have all of it right in front of you. Another perk to having a blog is the chance to build your landscape of content (photography, writing, social/digital media). There are so many skills that come from its development and continuation. Not only are you showing
commitment towards something you do outside of your job, you’re also showcasing your ability to construct new ideas.

Networking Opportunities.

It takes time to build your blog, and its followers. You have to establish yourself as credible, trustworthy and devoted to your readers. If you set a standard number of posts per week, live up to that expectation. Most importantly, this is an opportunity to share your ideas to an online network. When you have established a regular reader base, this becomes a network of valuable people who believe in what you have to say. You’ve become someone they rely on for
new information. It is with this reader base that you have developed connections in
different industries.

These are just a few of the reasons that make blogging essential for every communicator. (And we all communicate!) It is a great tool for everyone to learn. It doesn’t matter what you blog about, as long as you are passionate about the topic. It is through blogging that you can brand yourself as a thought leader, and an influencer in an industry. You have the power to share your ideas.

Screen Shot 2013-11-19 at 8.48.27 PM

6 Skills You Need to Succeed in PR.

image-90“Everything you do or say is public relations.” – Unknown

Do you ever wonder what it takes to survive in the world of public relations? It’s a question I get asked sometimes by students considering the field. It’s also a question I still ask my mentors. Until we become seasoned professionals, we only know as much as we’ve experienced.
However, if you’re truly passionate about the field, that’s one sign, you’re headed in the right
direction. So, what else?

  1. Patience. The PR field is faced with a lot of rejection. When it comes to pitching a story idea, or trying to get your client featured, you’re not always going to succeed. It is
    incredibly important to remain patient and determined.
  2. Quick thinking. Also known as, crisis management 101. When you get a call at 3 a.m. you’re going to have to be quick on your feet. A portion of the PR role is handling a crisis if one arises. The more time you take to figure out a solution, the more damage your client will face.
  3. Sociable. The field strives on networking, and understanding what it takes to be a good communicator. It is important to possess good social skills. PR professionals interact with the public on a daily basis. This will include public speaking and presenting in front of your clients.
  4. Dedicated. If you’re looking for a 9-5 office job, PR might not be your calling. The job
    entails a strong dedication to the field and your career. It also requires different hours on different days. Ignoring a call or an email after hours could lead to a missed opportunity – including a crisis. It’s a job that works around the clock, and you have to be willing to put in the time.
  5. Tech savvy. This is extremely important for the industry. New technology equates to new opportunities for you and your clients. You must be willing to try out the
    latest technology, gadgets, and software to see what works. Whether it’s for analytics or media alerts, the latest technology will usually accommodate the gaps in the old.
  6. Strategic. I chose strategic as a quality because it touches on a few areas that are
    important. First, you have to be willing to understand your client’s audience and their needs. You have to know when to look at the bigger picture, or when to consult outside
    resources. As well, the field requires you to make recommendations after you’ve
    thoughtfully analyzed whom you’re trying to reach. A campaign will fail if you don’t use strategic thinking to get there.

What else do you think it takes to be in PR?

Screen Shot 2013-11-19 at 8.48.27 PM