Sitting at a desk, writing releases, drafting social content for your boring client, or writing that dreaded white paper on a topic you KNOW NOTHING ABOUT, while clocking your time in 15-minute increments fighting to stay awake… is NOT PR.
It’s a function of PR, for sure. But the concept of acquiring just enough information to kinda, sorta, maybe, get the company’s culture a bit (by furiously reading as much original content from the company’s website as possible so to not waste your billable time ‘researching’) – is seriously draining.
I realize that we all have to do something we don’t want to do from time-to-time, and don’t get me wrong, I’ve played the game just as much as the next person… But what IF we all could work for/with people and causes we actually cared about?
I know what you’re thinking: Sure Amanda, that sounds like a dream – one I have no time, or ability to achieve because:
1. I have bills to pay.
2. I have a family/spouse/myself to support.
3. Could never leave my safe, constant, office job because that’s just the reality of this profession.
Sure, those reasons are excuses to make money – but they aren’t excuses to stay in a job you hate. Those pressures you put on yourself are exactly that: pressure YOU put on YOURSELF.
In case you missed it, I recently quit my job to follow my passions. At the time, I wasn’t even sure what the hell that meant or what I was going to do, but knew the internal struggle I felt everyday living someone else’s dream wasn’t the life I wanted for myself. I respect myself too much to let my life pass by without being present in the direction it takes.Recently I’ve found myself in a place where I work 10 times harder than before, and every day is equal parts terrifying amazing and inspiring. Once I slow down and tell myself to breathe, I have to pinch myself to check and see if I’m living a dream or real life.
For the past few months I’ve traveled as much, if not more, than I have in my previous 26 years. Every day is unknown to me. One day I’m on the ferry heading to Victoria, then the next I’m in Prince George planning a trip to China! I’ve flung myself whole heartedly into working with a team of people who care so much about what they do, and enjoy it so intensely, that the days run into the night and you stay up until 3am simply because you know how important the work you’re doing is. Not just for the client and your company, but because you enjoy what you’re doing for yourself.
So what will your boss never tell you?
They hired you because they thought (or at least really, really hoped) that you would care about their company as much as they do. They hope you’ll work your ass off to make sure you cannot fail. They all only want one thing in an employee: one who gives a shit. Cares about the clients, the company, what they do and doesn’t let an obstacle get in their way. They want to hire inspired and hardworking employees who find answers not excuses.
The world of PR has absolutely nothing to do with putting your head down and ‘getting the job done’ – it has everything to do with how passionate you are about what you do, the clients you work for or work you do, and how hard you’ll work to figure it out.
Don’t settle for the comfy desk job that you loathe. Take chances and do only the work that lights up up, and you believe in with every ounce of your heart, body and soul. It’ll show and it will prove to be far more successful in the long run than suffering through that internal struggle of feeling obligated to do something you hate.
What IS PR, might you ask?
That’s coming in part 2. Stay tuned.