1. Tell me about your career path so far, and how you found each of your jobs.
I majored in journalism in college and then spent about three years afterwards as a TV news reporter. I learned a lot, but I wanted to do more writing and in-depth projects. I made the switch to PR and landed my first job in PR at LaBreche through social networking. I communicated with their PR director and HR manager on Twitter and did an informational interview before I was hired. I think communicating with the professionals online and doing informational interviews are key when you're interested in working for a company. My second job which I currently hold at Carmichael Lynch Spong I also obtained through networking. I knew a current employee at CLS through PRSA networking events- another great way to get involved and meet other PR professionals!
I am a senior associate doing primarily media relations- writing and pitching. I work on a financial services client, a safety/security client and a home client. I enjoy the diversity of my day-to-day projects. Also, I contribute to the agency's social media team.
3. What worked well for you in your most recent job search?
Networking and being politely persistent. Everyone is very busy, and staying top of mind is key. A follow-up note (handwritten is encouraged!) after an informational meeting or interview can go a long way to make you stand out in an employer's mind.
4. What advice do you have for job seekers today?
Network, network, network! Attend PRSA events and meetings, Twin Cities Thursday Happy Hour, Social Media Breakfast, JMU 612 and Young Professionals of the Twin Cities. These are all great groups to meet new professionals and network. Also, I think having a social media presence is key if you are job searching in PR. Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, blogs and more are crucial to the conversation now and knowing how to use these tools- and actively using them yourself- is necessary.
Connect with Bennett through Twitter or LinkedIn.
-- Brant Skogrand, APR, MBC / Skogrand PR Solutions, LLC