Yesterday was crazy and wonderful all in one. I was blessed to have three interviews in three different PR sectors: corporate, boutique agency and non profit, back-to-back-to-back.
My first interview was with Turner PR, as I mentioned I would interviewing with. I must say I was bit nervous walking in, comparable to meeting a celebrity. I’m not even sure why, I don’t get nervous usually, plus being that it was an unpaid internship that I was being interviewed for, there shouldn’t have been much pressure. Don’t get me wrong, it would be wonderful to get employed there, but somehow when it’s full-time paid position the stakes are higher, especially as a recent graduate.
It was a good interview as interviews go. Oddly enough though, the questions they asked me weren’t experience focus. It was more of a description of the internship program and what I would be doing. Either way, whatever comes from this, I hope that I’ve made some contacts that I can add to my network.
(HELPFUL TIP) Should you not get the job/ decide for whatever reason it’s not meant for you, follow up with an email, asking them if it would ok to keep in touch and follow up with them at a later date. Assuming they agree (99% success rate) add them to you LinkedIn network.
My second interview was the Big Kahuna! Weber Shandwick, which is a company whose results speak from itself. This interview was for AE position in their technology and healthcare sector. The woman who I interviewed with was just as nice as you can be. She’s been with the company for 16 years and her zeal for her clients and Weber Shandwick in general was evident.
The interview went well. Usually most out-of-college YoPRo’s aren’t slated for AE positions, but she was impressed with what I had accomplished in during my time in college and the fact that I was teachable and willing to work hard.
(HELPFUL TIP) Sometimes you can be the most qualified person in the world, but if you aren’t willing to learn and be teachable, you often won’t make the cut. Sure, most supervisors don’t want to hold your hand, and expect you to learn quick, but especially with a new working environment, there are things to learn. Next time you’re in an interview make sure to mention that you may lack experience in a certain area i.e., media pitching, but you learn quick and are very teachable. Employers eat that up!
My final interview of the day was with the Alzheimers Association. I met this woman through a PRSA event, through a person in my network. It to is an unpaid internship position, as most non-profits are, but promised a lot of hands-on experience. That’s really the beauty of the non-profit world, they need they help and because of that you’re able to work on different things that maybe an agency wouldn’t let you work on.
I actually wouldn’t call this an interview, it was more of a ‘where are you in your career’ talk, and how can I help you. It’s so rare, to hear those words. Because I don’t live in the heart of Denver, she agreed to let me work virtually from home, which is something that I can totally do. The AA has a large press conference that their organizing with the Governor of Colorado that I’ll be able to help with as well as their annual Polar Plunge, at the Boulder Reservoir. Fun projects that will allow me to work on the gamut of skills necessary in the PR industry.
(HELPFUL TIP) A lot of student complain about the lack of internships available. Well try this on for size. Volunteer your services for a non-profit. My first internship was with a transitional house in my college town. I did a PR plan for them for their upcoming summer fundraiser. It’s a great way to implement the tools you’ve learned in the classroom. Find a NP that interest you and give them a call, say you’re a PR student looking to gain some experience, would it be possible to come in and talk with them. Simple.
Now it’s the waiting game (my favorite!). Even if none of these transpire into actual employment, it’s still rewarding to get some interview practice and realize that I’m worth a look at.