"What do you want to do after you graduate?"
Besides doing my daily tasks as a consultant, I often interview PR students for our internship program at Praxis. One question that I always ask the interviewee is “What do you want to do after you graduate?” Most interviewees say that they want to work in a startup company, or in the banking industry, etc and join a PR firm just for an internship, which is fine. But, a few of them say that they want to work as a PR consultant. And that is my ‘Aha moment’ every time I’m doing these interviews.
Why? Because that is exactly the moment when I would share with them the following reasons to explain why their decision is 100% correct!
1. 'Jack of all trades'
Working as a PR consultant enables you to learn about many industries. Technology, FMCG, banking, sports, F&B, you name it. It enables you to understand the way those industries work, the regulations, even the culture. It is an opportunity that not everyone can have. At the end of the day, when you have spent enough time working as a PR consultant and decided to move to one of the industries, you would already have the invaluable working experience in that particular industry.
2. Be a better you in everything
Writing is one of the most important skills that a PR person has to possess. We are being taught how to write concisely and compellingly. When a company - let’s say, want to launch a campaign or a new product, we need to write a press release to communicate what the company wants to say to the public, that’s where we need to convey that message clearly through writing. Not only writing skill, but public speaking, negotiation, or even interpersonal skill will also be enhanced while working as a PR consultant.
3. Network, network, network
Working as a PR consultant also gives you a very unique opportunity; How does talking directly to the CEO or Board of Directors of different companies sound to you? Well, when you’re working as a public relations consultant, you craft messages that the company would like to convey to the public, and more often than not, the message is delivered by the company’s high ranking officers. Thus, you have a chance to brief these super important people on what talking points they should deliver to the public through a press conference, let’s say. Some of my friends are working in the banking industry, sometimes while we’re hanging out and having discussion, I happen to say - casually, “Oh, I just met the President Director yesterday.” Can you imagine how cool that is! Besides that, you are also able to connect with a lot of people, journalists, key opinion leaders, celebrities, even ministers! This is really something.
4. Door of opportunity
I lost count on how many job offers that I received without me even proactively applying for one. Related to the previous point about networking, after you hustle in the industry for some time, you know people and people know you, if such opportunities arise, they remember you. They will recommend you to fill certain positions that suit your qualifications. Not only job opportunity, but also international exposure; you will be able to attend so many international events, get connected with clients from other countries, and in case you are working at Praxis, you even get to go overseas on company outings, free of charge! LOL.
Have I convinced you enough?