So I’m freaking out a bit. I graduate in two months. After years of figuring I’d leave my public relations degree on the shelf to instead pursue law, I’m rethinking my plan. Why did I wait until now to realize it just might be public relations, not law, that I’m passionate about?
Of course, this leaves me with no internship experience, something I’m realizing more and more is pretty dang important. Thus, it’s articles like this, proclaiming at least one internship to be an essential prerequisite to finding a job, that really freak me out. After years of work experience in law firms, I feel like my resume will only make public relations professionals say “meh.” Have I completely sabotaged myself from ever having a career in public relations? I mean, I finally realized that this is field is for me… Better late than never, right?
As the saying goes, it’s not what you know, it’s who you know. Now I realize my fellow students who have completed these internships will STILL have a leg up on me. But some networking on my part couldn’t hurt, right?
So that’s when this article, courtesy of Derek DeVries, descends from the heavens and reminds me that there are other ways to make an impact on potential employers and contacts in the public relations field. DeVries goes into detail on just how to begin networking, not only on the internet, but in person as well.
Actively networking in person. While it is arguably more impactful than networking online, I had never really thought about it, to be honest. I guess I figured that was the kind of thing that just fell in to your lap. Not so much.
DeVries suggests attending professional events to pursue potential contacts. But being satisfied making a small cameo isn’t enough. DeVries outlines a “toolkit” to make you a standout at events. Two of the tools that stood out the most to me were business cards and prior research for small talk ammunition. Not only would I benefit from actually having something to say, but leaving them with a souvenir of the experience isn’t a bad idea either.
It’s articles like these that remind me all is not lost. I just might have a chance in the public relations world.