Thursday, February 28, 2013

February Feature: Event Planning Tips from That Working Girl

Happy Thursday! And, happy last day of February!

Let's start today with a question: What drew you to the idea of PR? Some answers we hear (or have given) include...
  • working with people
  • getting to communicate verbally and with writing
  • opportunities to meet new people
  • and EVENT PLANNING
Event planning, though not something that would happen every day in a PR job, is such an important skill to learn and master. Our blog friend Lindsay of That Working Girl wrote a great post with five main concepts to think about when planning an event. Check out the whole post here!

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Is event planning something you are looking forward to doing as a professional? Let us know!

XOX,

Girls Under PRessure

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Mission Statements

Mission-Statement
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One of the first things I learned when I took fundamentals of PR was the importance of a mission statement to an organization.

This states the plans for and goals of the organization but even beyond that, it contains the words that organization or company plans on being true to. The best ones incite debate. They're a pretty big deal, guys. 

Whether you're reading this because you're actually interested in getting into PR or because I've bullied kindly urged you to read this from one of my social networks, there's a lesson to be learned! Mission statements aren't just for companies anymore. They're for you, too!

So, how do you create one of these? Follow my 5 steps!

1. Make it relevant: This thing outlines your life's mission! Include goals, aspirations, and traits that are important to you now.

2. Make it strong: Using strong verbs and adjectives is important in writing, generally, but it holds even more weight here. These are the words you'll live by! Make them count!

3. Revise: Textbooks and PR people say that mission statements should be edited anywhere in the range of 1, 3 or 5 years. Since we're people, it's probably best to change it up whenever we feel like our goals change. But take a second to evaluate what you have at least once a year.

4. Be inspired: Your personal mission doesn't always have to be your brainchild! If someone else says it better, by all means go for a quote. It's your mission--make sure the words are what you want to live by.

5. Hold onto it: This is your mission. Keep a piece of paper with the statement on it (I keep mine on one of my networking cards!) with you all the time, write it in your planner, basically just always have it around. This is an awesome way to keep your goals in the forefront!

And now, some statements from friends:

My friend Erika from high school (and now college, too!) told me that this quote helps her through busy days "Life is a marathon; take it one step at a time and just keep going."

Our blog friend Lindsay from That Working Girl (@HeyWorkingGirl) says, "I've always lived by the personal guideline of working at the level above you. This single piece of advice has helped me excel immensely in all areas of public relations. Even though I'm still a student, I like to work and think with the mindset of a PR professional, and treat my schoolwork as if it is a job."

Jasmine applies her statement to school: "Even if you don't like it, if you have to do something do it right. Take the time to craft it and perfect it. Never half ass something."

And finally, here is my mission statement: "Your life is what you do with it. You aren't entitled. Spend time creating good quality work, and remember to enjoy every opportunity and blessing that comes your way. Take the time to develop real connections, and be wary of things, people, and opportunities that are fleeting. The mission is simple: be the best version of yourself at all times, and don't settle for anything less than excellence." 

What do you think of these statements and ideas? Are you planning to write a personal mission statement for yourself? Let me know via comments, email or twitter!

XOX,

Elise

  


Wednesday, February 20, 2013

The Wonderful World Of...Grad School?



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I'm a year and a half away from graduation. I'm a year and a half from needing to find a job. I'm a year and a half from grad school.

I love school, you guys. I'm always saying I want to be done, but in my heart, I know that's not the case. 

So, I've been looking into graduate schools and graduate programs recently. It's a process similar to choosing a college or university with a main difference. There are a number of graduate programs to choose from and most of the time students have to apply directly into that program. If you think grad school is for you, you're probably wondering how to choose what (and where) you want to study in the net chapter of post-secondary education. Fret not, here are 5 tips/things to consider when choosing a school and program: 

1. Location is everything: Try to choose schools in the area you would like to live/begin your career. Most graduate programs offer flexible scheduling because full time work is often the way students finance their education. By furthering your education in the city you'd like to work, you're leaving yourself open to whatever job opportunities may pop up (and you're giving yourself an excuse to live in a place you've always dreamed of). 

2. Pick a school with programs you'll love: Chances are, you'll be holding down a job (which will likely be full time) while you're working on your master's. If you don't love what you're studying or you feel like it isn't relevant, reconsider the school or furthering your education. Schools seem to be including a variety of programs that allow specialization, which is great! This way, you'll be in a program you love and that will help further your career.

3. Finances: Grad school, like undergrad, is going to be expensive. You might feel like you're drowning in a sea of student loan debt. If you aren't holding down a full time job and you want to gain experience in your field, consider becoming a teaching or research assistant. This is a great way to build up your resume, make some money, brush up on your skills, and it's fantastic practice for being in front of people (because you're going to be in the working world). The schools I'm planning on applying to offer these TA options for the area I'm studying as an undergrad and for classes  where my master's training will be put to use.

4. Evaluate Competition: Master's programs can get extremely competitive! It's imperative to make a strong impression. Join groups like PRSSA if you haven't before you finish your time as an undergrad. Go for a few internships. Volunteer. Make sure your brand is solid and cohesive. All of these will help you stand out. 

5. Make sure you're ready: Sometimes, people head to grad school the moment (ok, this is a bit of an exaggeration) they are handed their B.A. or B.S. But, that's not the plan for everybody. As a graduate student, you will be expected to have certain skill sets and a broad understanding of topics. You may have gotten all of these tools in your time as an undergrad, which is great! But sometimes, taking a second to plummet yourself into the working world will provide you with an extra bit of understanding and might give you a sharper focus on the program you would want to enter. Say, for example, you're planning on entering a program for publishing after you've earned your B.A. in English. A year into working, you realize that you want to use your writing skills for social media. You can then re-focus and enter a media studies or media management program.

I hope these five considerations have been helpful! These are items I've been considering since, like I said,  I'll be getting ready for grad school so soon.

Do you have any tips to add? Any thoughts? Let me know! Tweet @UndrPRssr!

XOX,

Elise

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day!

Whether you're single or taken, Happy Valentine's Day!
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Today's the fantastic Hallmark holiday which condones couples but shows no love for singles. However, that doesn't mean singles can't partake in the holiday. Of course, you're not going out for candle-lit dinner, but hey, you can celly nonetheless. So instead of hating this holiday, indulge:
  • Friend dinner date: Grab your fellow single ladies and lads and going out for group dinner. Yeah, one-on-one is romantic, but you're going for fun. The more, the merrier!
  • Movie night: Cue up Netflix. Maybe you're behind on the latest blockbusters. If that's not your style, watch a few from your favorite genre. I'm always game for a good horror movie. Just avoid the rom-coms and chick flicks. Unless those are your MO, then have at it! But remember, don't feel sorry for yourself if you start fantasizing about your life as a  rom-com.
  • Treat yourself: Treat yourself to a mani/pedi after work or get the sweater you've been eyeing online. Last year, I treated myself to a hockey jersey. This year I might treat myself to another jersey (my favorite player now sports a C on his jersey!), some hockey tickets or a tattoo. I'm undecided.
Remember, today's not a day to feel bad. It's an excuse to celebrate! And spend cash on yourself because you don't have to spend it on someone else!

xox,

Your Girls Under PRessure

Monday, February 11, 2013

The Social Series: Twitter

Discussing dos and don'ts of social media.
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Tried and true, Twitter is everyone's favorite microblog. However, the little blue bird has come a long, long way in seven years. Yes, twitter has already been around seven years.

Twitter morphed from a place for sharing inner thoughts to a hub for news, networking and opinion sharing. There are a lot of opportunities to gain from Twitter including job shadow opportunities, informational interviews, internships and jobs.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Bring Sexy Back: It Never Left!

Remember that time I told you grammar is sexy?

Brotips and I were onto to something.

According to Ragan.com, we're not just blowing smoke. 43% of singles agreed bad grammar is a turnoff, and 35% think good grammar is sexy.

And there's even a cute infographic for the survey results:
via. Ragan.com
So remember, displaying your grammatical prowess and articulation power could help you win over the ladies or lads. Never under estimate the power of speech!

Until next time...

- J

Monday, February 4, 2013

Lessons in Love

Elise's writing process
Via Instagram

Once upon a time, I had a fashion blog.

It was my dream come true. I always wanted to write, and writing about a topic I was (and still am) head over heels obsessed with was the closest thing to perfect I think I'll ever experience. And the whole time I worked on this blog, I was pre-med. Being pre-med was something I liked. Science is what I was always told I was good at and what I should pursue. So, obviously, being me, I went for it.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Lip Service: February

As future PR people, it's super important to prep our pouts so we can confidently pitch and promote clients! Check out our top lip product picks this month!