Posted by: kris10ly | April 16, 2010

Are you LinkedIn?

Whether you are LinkedIn or not, this is a must read post for you. It includes tips about how to create a professional profile as well as helpful ways to manage it.

On Wed., April 7, 2010 I attended the “Launch Your Career Using LinkedIn” workshop conducted by Dorsey Baldwin, Assistant Director of Employment, from the Office of Career Services at Georgia Southern University.

Before we go any further, it is important to understand what the purpose is of LinkedIn. Here is the LinkedIn definition Mrs. Baldwin provided: “LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional network with over 60 million members and growing rapidly. LinkedIn connects you to your trusted contacts and helps you exchange knowledge, ideas, and opportunities with a broader network of professionals.”

LinkedIn Logo

Do you know what it takes to create a professional LinkedIn profile? No need to worry, it is easy as one, two, three. All you need to do is to follow these 5 Golden Rules:

The 5 Golden Rules of Professional LinkedIn Profiles:

1. Fill out your profile to 100% completion

  • Photo
  • Headline
  • Keyword-rich summary
  • All experience

2. Join relevant groups
3. Claim your custom URL
4. Request Recommendations
5. Keep your profile up-to-date

The following three steps go into more detail about the 5 Golden Rules. Once you have completed these steps you will be on your way to becoming a professional!

STEP 1: Present Yourself—Build Your Profile

  • Tell your story

Think of your profile as an interactive business card. You have the opportunity to network with individuals all over the world. In your profile you want to describe your summer jobs, internships, volunteer positions, or personal passions.

Did you know? A LinkedIn profile is 40 times more likely to get seen by employers, and increases your chances for an employment offer.

STEP 2: Get Connected

  • Join groups and send invites

You have a network, now find a group to join that is relevant to you (i.e.- if you graduated from Georgia Southern University, you can join the “Georgia Southern University Alumni and Friends”). Next, connect with your extended family, family friends, family of your friends, friends, professors, current or former employers, etc. Tell them about your degree and the opportunities you are looking for.

Something to think about. A degree alone won’t land you a job. But a network of people who can recommend you is invaluable when looking for that next opportunity.

This leads us to the third and final step…

STEP 3: Recommendations

  • Ask employers, professors, classmates, etc. to write a recommendation for you

Recommendations will help you to gain credibility. It gives you the opportunity to stand out from everyone else and provides employers with an impression of who you are in the workplace. Try to obtain recommendations for each position listed in your profile in order to represent consistency in character.

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Posted by: kris10ly | April 2, 2010

The PR Pro: Rachel Miller

Rachel Miller

College has always been referred to as the best years in life, so when Rachel Miller was offered a job as an admissions counselor at her own institution, Georgia Southern University, she did not hesitate at humbly accepting this position. Now, four and half years later, she has moved up the ladder and currently holds the title of “Coordinator for Visitation Programs.” Rachel graduated from Georgia Southern with a bachelor’s degree in Public Relations (PR), one that she has noted to be beneficial in helping her successfully accomplish the tasks brought to her in her job.  Having previously met Rachel through the University and mutual contacts, she happily volunteered her time to me over some coffee, so that she could share her experiences and knowledge of the Public Relations field in an interview with me.

There were some prominent themes in the advice that Rachel offered to me, which I feel are important for all aspiring PR professionals should adhere to. Her first word to me when I asked her for tips was the usual, but certainly not UNimportant advice to “network!”

“Remember names and faces, this is important for the rest of your life! Also, find a way to keep up with people you meet, make notes about what they look like if it helps!” I have found in my own experiences that after talking to a professional, it is extremely helpful to write on the back of their business card what they looked like, where I met them, and what we talked about, to later jog my memory.

Rachel was off to a good start and continued going when she also stressed the importance of being professional and keeping customers in the forefront of our thoughts.

“Be professional, this includes showing maturity and excellent communication skills. Also, always remember customer service is key no matter what job you have!”

To prove her point even more she expanded on how important customer service is to her job. “As a recruiter, I go to college fairs either during the day or at night, making high school visits to all the top 30 high schools in my territory. I make calls to prospective students constantly and am always talking with parents and students answering their questions.”

Her job description above entails people 100%, and just like a corporation, she has clients, prospective students and parents. How she portrays herself and the University to them is key in influencing them to choose Georgia Southern as their investment in education. “I feel like no matter where I am, I am a representative of Georgia Southern and I feel that is an obligation to always represent [it] and what we stand for, no matter where I am.”

The majority of our conversation was about ethics and ways to excel at any job in general, but I wanted to get more specifically into what her position and the Public Relations field entailed. Knowing Rachel for some time, I have seen her come in and out of Statesboro constantly, so I asked her how much she traveled and how many hours did she put into her job, to get a better feel of what my years are going to look like after graduation.

“I travel a lot, especially during the travel seasons,” when she is visiting high schools and recruiting prospective students. “During travel season, I maintain a 50-60 hours per week schedule and even then I still take work home with me.”

Wow, that is a lot of hours. And what about travel:

“I have been living in Atlanta the past two years and I still travel to Statesboro twice and month, up to North Carolina twice year, and I am responsible for the whole Macon territory.”

So, her year is booked, especially during the recruiting season, but she has reaped the awards. She proudly told me about the promotion to the Coordinator for Visitation Programs she just recently received which will relocate her to Statesboro. Maybe some of those travel hours will get cut down?!

Talking with a professional in the field was extremely helpful in preparing myself for the near future and Rachel’s tips are definitely going to get me off on the right foot once I step into the office of my first job.

Last summer I completed an internship with CNN Newsource in Atlanta. It is extraordinary how much information you can acquire and learn in such a short period of time. I trained in the five Newsource divisions, shadowed multiple departments throughout Turner and worked under many influential professionals who enthusiastically helped me network within the company. To top it off, I voluntarily participated in an extracurricular project tagged “Gen Y,” with a select group of fellow interns. My overall goal was to take advantage of the abundant amount of opportunities offered at Turner, and I can honestly say—I have achieved that and more.

The image below is a picture of our “Gen Y” intern group in front of CNN.

I can’t tell you how important an internship is. If you have the opportunity to take more than one, I highly recommend it. It is definitely in your best interest, especially since it’s so difficult in this economy to get a job right now.

Here are a few tips that I gained through my internship experience:

  • Take advantage of every opportunity. Don’t hesitate to ask questions. It is what you are supposed to do, because this is a learning experience for you. Show your internship advisor how much you care by getting involved in as much you can.
  • Take initiative. This shows your internship advisor how responsible and driven you are. They do not have time to baby-sit you and tell you what you should do next. It is up to you to figure out what you should do.
  • Build a portfolio. Keep up with everything you do during your internship. Make copies and combine all of your work into an organized portfolio.
  • Treat your internship like a job. You have the potential to get offered a job with the company or organization you are interning with. Consider it as a job interview or potential letter of recommendation.

Unlimited opportunities...

Andy Bibliowicz is a marketing major at the University of Georgia and had previously interned with me at CNN. I chose to interview him about his internship experience and asked him to provide any tips or advice he would like to share with others.

“Interviews and internships depend very much on the company, their initiatives, and the internship your applying for.” –Andy Bibliowicz

Andy’s tips for your internship interview:

  • Educate yourself about the company/organization.
  • Make sure your resume caters towards the internship you are applying for.
  • Highlight significant positions, such as leadership roles.

Andy had a recent interview with Altria, the parent company of PhilipMorris. Although Andy did not receive the internship, he made sure to call and ask what he could of done differently. He said, “The most significant advice I was given was to practice answering situational questions. Almost every, even significantly, large company will ask situational questions during their interview.”

The best advice Andy gave for practicing situational questions is, “Go to your college career center, and either go through a mock interview or get a list of common situational questions.”

Andy’s tips about what to do during your internship:

  • Always act professionally. Its never a bad idea to over dress, but under dressing can really hurt you.
  • Taking advantage of your internship is a must. From getting more information about the company, to meeting higher ups, being an intern allows you a lot of breezeway to do something you wouldn’t be able to do as an employee.

Are you looking for a good book to read? You should check out…

“Putting the Public Back in Public Relations: How Social Media Is Reinventing the Aging Business of PR.”

By: Brian Solis and Deirdre Breakenridge

Check out my personal review below…

***Click here to see my notes for each slide***

Posted by: kris10ly | February 17, 2010

To Wear or Not to Wear? That is The Question.

Okay, so it’s time to tear apart your wardrobe. You have a job interview coming up. What should you wear? When you’re going through your clothes ask yourself this, “To wear or not to wear?” That is the question my friend. I’m going to provide you with some helpful tips from insightful sources. It is up to you whether you choose to use their advice or not. If you want my opinion, continue reading…

To wear or not to wear…?

To wear or not to wear…?

Was it easy to choose which to wear and which not to wear? I hope all of you said yes. Job search expert, Alison Doyle asked in her article Dressing for Success: How to Dress for an Interview, “Does it really make a difference how you dress for an interview?” (About.com). Well, does it? As you should’ve guessed, her answer was, “In many cases, it does.” In my opinion, I would say in almost ALL cases it does, unless otherwise informed.

The way a person dresses can tell you a lot about them. Some may see this as “judging a book by its cover,” but this doesn’t apply to a job interview. One shot, that’s all you have (in most cases). You need to give it all you got. I’m sure all of you have heard the saying, “a first impression is a lasting one.” How do you want them to remember you? Yes, it’s important to stand out from the rest of the job seekers, but leave it up to your portfolio, resume or social skills for that.

If you’re looking for a specific list of what to avoid wearing to an interview, read the article What Not to Wear to An Interview: Top 20 Wardrobe Malfunctions (CareerBuilder). As you read the list, you may laugh and say to yourself, “These are obviously no-brainers. No one would wear any of this to an interview.” But the sad thing is, the list exists because there are individual’s out there who did not ask themselves the important question, “To wear or not to wear?”

I’m going to wrap this post up by leaving you with a list of guidelines that I discovered from the article, Dressing for Interview Success. There are three lists: one for men and women, one for just women and one for just men. Check it out:

Men and Women

  • Conservative two-piece business suit (solid dark blue or grey is best)
  • Conservative long-sleeved shirt/blouse (white is best, pastel is next best)
  • Clean, polished conservative shoes
  • Well-groomed hairstyle
  • Clean, trimmed fingernails
  • Minimal cologne or perfume
  • Empty pockets (no bulges or tinkling coins)
  • No gum, candy, or cigarettes
  • Light briefcase or portfolio case
  • No visible body piercing (nose rings, eyebrow rings, etc.) or tatoos

Men

  • Necktie should be silk with a conservative pattern
  • Dark shoes (black lace-ups are best)
  • Dark socks (black is best)
  • Get a haircut; short hair always fares best in interviews
  • Fresh shave; mustaches are a possible negative, but if you must, make sure it is neat and trimmed
  • No beards (unless you are interviewing for a job as a lumberjack!)
  • No rings other than wedding ring or college ring
  • No earrings (if you normally wear one, take it out)

Women

  • Wear a suit with a jacket and skirt or slacks; no dresses
  • Shoes with conservative heels
  • Conservative hosiery at or near skin color (and no runs!)
  • No purses, small or large; carry a briefcase instead
  • If you wear nail polish, use clear or a conservative color
  • Keep your makeup simple and natural (it should not be too noticeable)
  • No more than one ring on each hand
  • One set of earrings only

If you follow my advice, I promise you will seen as a professional in your next interview. Break a leg!

Posted by: kris10ly | February 11, 2010

Social Media: The GOOD, The BAD And The UGLY

What type of person are you? When someone asks you, “Okay, I have good news and bad news. Which do you want first?” Me? I prefer to hear the negative first and then proceed with the positive. This way you can always end on a good note.

This post focuses specifically on the pros and cons of social media for job seekers. And since I’m leading this hot topic, let’s start off with the different ways social media can potentially destroy you…

What’s one word that comes to mind? (Hint: #1 social networking site). Piece of cake, right? Your answer should be: Facebook. Take a minute to reflect… What type of image does your profile portray of you? Would a stranger see it as good or bad (i.e.- potential employer)?

“According to research conducted by CareerBuilder, social networking poses a serious threat to job seekers who have posted inappropriate information about themselves.” (Baseline)

Do any of your social networks pose a serious threat to your image as a future employee? To be on the safe side, if you have any doubt in your mind–get rid of it! Here’s my advice… ask more than one person (those you respect) to look over your profiles and have them give you their honest opinion.

According to Dan Schawbel, author of Me 2.0: Build a Powerful Brand to Achieve Career Success and owner of the award winning Personal Branding Blog, our economic state and advances in technology have forever changed the traditional approaches to job searching (Mashable: The Social Media Guide).

What has changed:

– Fewer jobs available

– More competition

– Technology… interactive social media, WebCam, etc.

FACTS: (Mashable)

– Job losses in 2008 = 1.2 million

– Current unemployment = 6.5 %

– Largest companies let go as much as 10 % of their workforce

1.5 million college graduates this year

– Job growth rate is at a six year low = 1.3 %

One in five hiring managers conduct background checks using social networks

Now that I have provided you with some of the potential downfalls of social media along with various interesting facts, let’s move to the benefits. I found a great list of pro’s from Social Media U360. Here’s what they had to offer:

  • It’s where society is headed (according to Forrester Research, 80% of young adults use social networks).
  • Popular medium (over 500,000 new members on social networks each day, says comScore)
  • Lends easily to mass communication
  • Global
  • Accessible from anywhere (that is, anywhere you can get on the internet)
  • Open to anyone
  • Fosters community
  • Build relationships

To sum it up, there is a good and a bad side to everything. This is why it is so important for you to educate yourself about social media. Be aware of what you post on Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, etc. as well as what others may post of you. Employers are going to judge you by what you choose to display on your sites. Your future could depend on social media. I highly recommend taking this time to revise your social networking sites. There is no time like the present, especially if your future depends on it. Good luck!

    Posted by: kris10ly | January 28, 2010

    Pre-Interview Jitters? Here’s How to Lose Them.

    Sweaty palms…

    Mind racing…

    Stomach in knots…

    Can’t breath…

    Feverish…

    These are typical symptoms of pre-interview jitters. Is this what you’re feeling? If not, you’re one step ahead. If so, I have just the remedy for you. But, before you go any further, take a deep breath and relax. Okay, now you’re ready.

    Human Resource expert, Susan M. Heathfield, wrote an article called, “Believe What You See: How To Use Nonverbal Communication in Hiring” (About). It is written from the interviewer’s standpoint versus the interviewee. Heathfield included a quote from writer Peter F. Drucker, “The most important thing in communication is hearing what isn’t said.” The problem is, many people focus more on what to say and forget about the big picture (i.e.- posture, gestures, expressions, etc.).

    Do you try to create a script in your mind before a interview? Avoid it at all cost. Poet William Carlos Williams said it perfectly, “It’s not what you say that matters but the manner in which you say it.” Or in even simpler terms, “It’s not what you say, it’s how you say it” (Career Builder). Here are some main points I gathered from Career Builder:

    • Have them at “hello”

    First and foremost, be on time. Remember, they made time for you in their busy schedule. Don’t ruin this opportunity before it even begins!

    As I said in my previous post on cover letters, “…research as much as you can about the company you are looking to apply for.” Employers assume that you’ve prepared yourself about their company, commonly asked interview questions and how to dress to impress (By this I mean professionally, not a night out on the town!). You want the first moment they see you to be, “You’ve got the right one baby!” Okay, maybe not quite like that, but you get the gist. Also, always make eye contact and give a firm handshake. To sum it up, don’t be a dead man walking. Just prep!

    • Shake your hand, watch yourself

    …shake your hand, show them what your working with. Be confident. Lose the pre-interview jitters. If you can’t sit still, the employer might think you, the potential employee, won’t be able to stay focused.

    • Don’t…

    1. “Rub the back of your head or neck.” This shows a lack of interest.

    2. “Rub or touch your nose.” It implies that you may not be trustworthy. Or, lack of hygiene. Keep your hands in check!

    3. “Sit with your arms folded across your chest.” Open up! Relax. If you clam up, you may as well see yourself to the door.

    4. “Cross your legs and idly shake one over the other.” Are you five? Sit still and pay attention. Again, just relax.

    5. “Lean your body towards the door.” Do you have better things to do with your time? No, but I’m sure the employer does. Stay engaged.

    6. “Slouch back in your seat.” Sit up straight, on the edge of your chair and feet on the floor. Show them that you’re prepared.

    7. “Stare back blankly.” Earth to potential employee!? Come back! Distancing yourself will not get you hired.

    • Do

    The opposite of everything I just said. Sit up straight and smile. Engage in conversation. Avoid the extra dose of cologne or perfume, but feel free to layer on as much deodorant as you want. And stay away from foods that make you… well, you know what I mean.

    • Say Goodbye Gracefully

    Thank the interviewer and give that firm handshake. Keep in mind, the interview is not over until you’re in car. Make sure you keep the same composure, because you never know who’s watching…

    Another site I encourage you to check out is CollegeGrad. They have a list of the “top five nonverbals.” It’s ranked from the most important to least important tips.

    1. “Eye Contact“- Are you good at making eye contact with your friends and family? If not, you better practice before you go into an interview. It can make or break you. Practice makes perfect (or close to it)!

    2. “Facial Expressions“- Pay attention to your expressions. Look lively, not lifeless. Give a genuine smile. Show them you’re excited to be there! An employer doesn’t want to hire a negative nancy!

    3. “Posture“- Sit up straight. Be confident. Walk tall, stand tall, sit tall… be tall (it doesn’t matter what height you are). Get it? Got it? Good.

    4. “Gestures“- Don’t talk with your hands excessively, like a New Yorker (it’s okay, my whole family’s from there). If you’re clumsy, you may knock over their coffee. Just use as needed and with caution.

    5. “Space“- Figure out a comfortable space between you and the interviewer. Don’t get all up in their business, but don’t be on the complete opposite side of the room either. Whatever comes natural, for both of you. Be observant.

    I hope this post helps you feel more comfortable and confident about interviewing. I know it may seem overwhelming at first, but the more you do it, the more natural it will be. Be yourself, to an extent (don’t act like you would with your buddies). And last but not least, don’t get discouraged or give up. You may have the best interview of your life and not get the job. If you do your part and it’s meant to be, then it will be. If it’s not meant to be, then keep moving forward!

    P.S.- Not to ruin your day, but I will not be posting a new topic next week. But, stop in the following week for, “Benefits/Pitfalls of Social Media in the Job Search.”

    As always, I love feedback from all of you!

    Posted by: kris10ly | January 27, 2010

    Blog Comments

    Comment One

    • Title of Post: “portfolios for public relations students” By: Barbara Nixon
    • Hyperlink: http://publicrelationsmatters.com/2010/02/13/portfolios-for-public-relations-students/
    • Date: February 17, 2010
    • Comment: “I found the responses from the professionals to be very insightful. Most of them recommended having both print and digital copies of your portfolio. It also can vary depending upon the company you are looking to apply for. Some may require one or the other. A pro for a hard copy of your portfolio is it won’t get lost in the interviewer’s overflowing mailbox, or potentially blocked from a firewall. On the other hand, it can be perceived as outdated. A pro for a digital copy of your portfolio is it gives you the opportunity to demonstrate your ability to be creative. However, a downfall can include technical glitches. This always appears to happen at the worst times (like during a crucial interview). To sum it up, have both forms at hand.”

    Comment Two

    • Title of Post: “Body Language And Nonverbal in Interviews” By: Eryn Pond
    • Hyperlink: http://epond6.wordpress.com/2010/02/02/body-language-and-nonverbal-in-interviews/#comment-76
    • Date: March 5, 2010
    • Comment: “Hey Eryn! Your advice on the importance of body language and non-verbal behavior in job interviews was right on target. I took the nonverbal quiz and scored a 12 out of 12. According to the University of Kent’s quiz, I’m a “Non-verbal Communication (NVC) Wizard!” I found a lot of the same advice when I researched about the do’s and don’ts of body language and non-verbal behavior during job interviews. It’s amazing how many people focus more on what they want to say in an interview versus how they should say it. Non-verbal’s are a crucial part of a job interview and something everyone should pay more attention to.”

    Comment Three

    • Title of Post: “What to Wear to a PR Job Interview” By: Candice Hall
    • Hyperlink: http://candimichelle.wordpress.com/2010/03/04/what-to-wear-to-a-pr-job-interview/#comment-41
    • Date: April 11, 2010
    • Comment: “Hi Candice! I really enjoyed reading your blog post about what to wear to a job interview. I strongly agree with your comment about how it’s hard for women to decide what to wear in relation to pants or a skirt. As a woman, we want to be taken seriously. For me personally, I always wear pants to my job interviews. I feel comfortable, confident and professional. As you said in your post, “If we look professional, we feel professional…” I agree with you 100%. You have one shot to make a good impression and it’s up to you to make it a lasting one.”

    Comment Four

    • Title of Post: “Cover Letter Tips” By: Allison Allmond
    • Hyperlink: http://aallmond1.wordpress.com/2010/01/22/cover-letter-tips/#comment-29
    • Date: April 11, 2010
    • Comment: “Hey Allison! I really enjoyed reading your advice about cover letters. You described it perfectly when you said, “A cover letter is the prelude to your resume.” It truly is and that is why it is so important to have a strong cover letter. If your cover letter is sloppy and contains a lot of mistakes, most employers will not even look at your resume. Think of your cover letter as a pitch. How would you pitch yourself to a potential employer? They want to know what you can do for them. What makes you a better candidate for the job or interview? It is important to address all of these questions when you are writing your cover letter.”

    Comment Five

    • Title of Post: “My Interview With a PR Professional” By: Meghan Spillers
    • Hyperlink: http://meghanspr.wordpress.com/2010/03/29/my-interview-with-a-pr-professional/#comments
    • Date: April 22, 2010
    • Comment: “Hey Meghan! I really enjoyed reading this post about your interview with Chelsey McNicoll. This is a perfect example, because it demonstrates how imperative it is for us to expose ourselves to the various social media. It is also a great way for us to continuously improve our writing skills. Social media provides us with an unlimited amount of opportunities. Today, everything is going digital. It is up to us to stay ahead of the game and to continuously update our skills and knowledge. If you do not use Social Media you are only limiting yourself. I definitely have a new and improved perspective. Thank you!”

    Comment Six

    • Title of Post: “What to Wear to an Interview” By: Kristin Bixby
    • Hyperlink: http://kbixby1.wordpress.com/2010/02/26/what-to-wear-to-an-interview/#comment-46
    • Date: April 22, 2010
    • Comment: “Hey Kristin! I really enjoyed reading your post about “What to Wear to an Interview.” You are so right, what you wear to an interview is very important, because it is your first impression with the company. And clearly, you always want your first impression to be a positive and lasting one. I liked the comparison that you used in relation to the color of your clothing representing the type of work that you do. I have never thought of it that way. I am definitely going to take that into consideration the next time I am getting ready for an interview. Thanks for the great advice!”

    Comment Seven

    • Title of Post: “Internship Advice 101” By: Sarah Kemp
    • Hyperlink: http://skemp1.wordpress.com/2010/03/05/internship-advice-101/#comments
    • Date: April 22, 2010
    • Comment: “Hey Sarah! I really enjoyed reading your post about tips for internships. I interned last summer at CNN and I agree with both Sam’s and Carleigh’s advice. However, meeting new people, getting involved and following up are the most important, I would have to say. Networking leads to endless opportunities for your future. Get involved in anything and everything. Do not wait to be told to do something, because more than likely you will be waiting for a long time and your supervisor does not have time to baby-sit. Follow-up, this is key. Even if you do not plan on working with the company that you interned for, you may need them for a recommendation in the future. Do not limit your options. Great advice Sarah!”

    Comment Eight

    • Title of Post: “Need an internship? Heres some words of advice.” By: Ally Kupcewitz
    • Hyperlink: http://allykup123.wordpress.com/2010/03/11/need-an-internship-heres-some-words-of-advice/#comments
    • Date: April 22, 2010
    • Comment: “Hi Ally! The advice you shared in this post is extremely helpful and informative. I would have to say from my experience that summer is the MOST competitive time to find an internship, especially if you are looking for your dream internship. I agree, you want to try to find an internship that you would be interested in potentially working for in the future. On the other hand, after you complete the internship, you may find that you do not want to work with that particular company. Regardless, right now is not the time for us to be picky. An internship is a learning opportunity, period. The experience is what you make of it. Thank you for your great advice!”

    Comment Nine

    • Title of Post: “Do’s and Don’ts of Interview Attire” By: Brittney Lindsay
    • Hyperlink: http://brittlindsay.wordpress.com/2010/02/26/dos-and-donts-of-interview-attire/
    • Date: April 22, 2010
    • Comment: Hi Brittney! Wow, that is quite the story for a first interview. Great job! You are so right a first impression is everything. In your case, it landed you a job right away! It is very important for people to understand how imperative it is to dress for success. As you said, “…it can make or break an interviewee.” I remember for my first interview back in high school, my parents made me dress professionally too. I can honestly say, it makes all the difference in the world. When you dress professionally, an employer is more inclined to take you seriously as well as see you as someone who can positively represent his or her company. I really enjoyed your advice! Thanks!”

    Comment Ten

    • Title of Post: “Learning From Interviewing Others In The PR World” By: Emily Roche
    • Hyperlink: http://eroche1.wordpress.com/2010/03/30/learning-from-interviewing-others-in-the-pr-world/
    • Date: April 22, 2010
    • Comment: “Hey Emily! Your interview with Amy Jacques was very insightful. She has experienced a lot of amazing opportunities working as an associate editor of publications for Public Relations Society of America. I cannot wait to take what we have learned in our major courses and be able to apply it in the PR industry. I agree with what Amy said about the importance of writing and keeping up with the continuos changes in technology. If you are going to work in the PR industry, you have to be willing to adapt to change as well as be able to move/think at a very fast pace. Amy’s advice was extremely helpful!”

    Comment Eleven

    • Title of Post: “Benefits & Pitfalls of Social Media for Job Seekers” By: Jessica Cameron
    • Hyperlink: http://jcam19.wordpress.com/2010/02/18/benefists-pitfalls-of-social-media-for-job-seekers/
    • Date: April 23, 2010
    • Comment: “Hi Jessica! The 7 secrets from Mashable are great ways to use social media to help you find a job. It is amazing to see the transformation of social media from when it was first introduced up until now. As you said, it started out as a way to reconnect and stay in touch with friends and family. Now, it is widely used for professional networking. The method of job searching has forever changed. With advances in technology continuously changing, who knows what it will be like ten years from now… I really enjoyed reading this post. Thanks for the great advice!”

    Comment Twelve

    • Title of Post: “Cover Letter Tips” By: John Keith
    • Hyperlink: http://jkeith1906.wordpress.com/2010/01/26/cover-letter-tips/
    • Date: April 23, 2010
    • Comment: Hi John! I really like the comparison you used in relation to thinking of your cover letter as a commercial for yourself. I have never though of it that way before, but it is so true. It is very important to maintain professionalism throughout the cover letter. An employer wants to know what you can do for them and how it will benefit the company/organization as a whole. Ask yourself, “Why am I the best candidate for the job.” What is something that will make you stand out from the rest of the crowd? Like you said, you have to sell yourself. Thanks for the great tips!

    Comment Thirteen

    • Title of Post: “Internship Advice” By: Danielle Barrett
    • Hyperlink: http://dsmilez.wordpress.com/2010/03/07/internship-advice-prca-3711/#comments
    • Date: April 23, 2010
    • Comment: “Hi Danielle! The advice you gave about internships is so true. Last summer, I completed an internship with CNN. I did not need to take 9 hours, but I chose to do so anyways. It was the best decision I could have made, because in order to get the most out of your internship experience, you need time. Also, as you said, it gives you that real world experience. You will not get that kind of experience by completing a 3 hour internship. Make the most of it. Get involved in as much as you can. An internship is what you make of it. Thanks for the advice!”

    Comment Fourteen

    • Title of Post: “What to wear? PR Edition” By: Meghan Callahan
    • Hyperlink: http://meghancallahan99.wordpress.com/2010/02/27/what-to-wear-pr-edition/
    • Date: April 23, 2010
    • Comment: “Hi Meghan! Great tips! It is interesting to think about how the standards for interview attire have changed over time. This is why it is so important for everyone to stay up-to-date on what attire is expected for interviewees today. I agree, you should collect information on the company you are looking to apply for or have an interview with. In some cases, you may not be required to dress in formal attire. However, if you decide to dress more casual make sure it is business casual. Most of the rules still follow. Thank you for sharing this great advice!”

    Comment Fifteen

    • Title of Post: “How to Stand out as an Intern” By: Marilyn Lintel
    • Hyperlink: http://marilynpr.wordpress.com/2010/03/31/how-to-stand-out-as-an-intern/
    • Date: April 23, 2010
    • Comment: “Hi Marilyn! The tips that you shared are very beneficial. Last summer, I completed an internship with CNN. Along with my internship, I decided to get involved in an extracurricular project with a small group of interns. My supervisor was not only impressed with my quality of work, but was even more astounded when he saw the final product of the project I had been working on aside from my actual internship. If you can handle it, I highly recommend going that extra mile. This shows your employer that you have good time management skills. I promise it will pay off. Thanks for sharing your advice about internships!”

    Comment Sixteen

    • Title of Post: “Dress to Impress” By: Lauren Lee
    • Hyperlink: http://laurenashleylee.wordpress.com/2010/03/11/dress-to-impress/
    • Date: April 23, 2010
    • Comment: “Hi Lauren! Great tips about what to wear to an interview. It is amazing to see the number of people that do not know what is appropriate to wear. Your interview attire can help you to land a job, if you are dressed professionally and if you follow the basic guidelines for dressing for success. Also, it always helps to get multiple opinions, from those whom you respect of course. It is important to decide on an outfit in advance, because you may need to iron it, take it to the dry cleaners, etc. As you said, “The first impression is vital.” If you are wearing clothes that you feel comfortable in, then it will help you to be confident inside. Thanks for the advice!”

    Comment Seventeen

    • Title of Post: “Styrofoam and Social Media” By: Shannon McCloud
    • Hyperlink: http://smccloud.wordpress.com/2010/03/04/styrofoam-and-social-media/
    • Date: April 23, 2010
    • Comment: “Hi Shannon! The tips you provided about social media are very interesting and informative. Social media is being used more and more in businesses/organizations. As you mentioned, “…it opens up a dialogue between company and customer.” Through this, customers are getting the chance to have a voice by offering constructive feedback. Customer relations has increasingly become the focus for companies, because it helps them to positively improve their business. Before social media, it made it more difficult for companies to measure customer satisfaction. Social media has forever changed the way for companies and individuals. I look forward to seeing what the future has in store. Thanks for the great tips!”

    Comment Eighteen

    • Title of Post: “Internship Advice” By: Sarah Monahan
    • Hyperlink: http://samonahan.wordpress.com/2010/03/08/internship-advice/
    • Date: April 23, 2010
    • Comment: “Hi Sarah! An internship is the perfect opportunity to network. As you said, treat your internship like a job. You can be the intern that runs coffee all day or you can take some initiative and show your employer that you want to learn more. Last summer, I completed an internship at CNN. It was up to me to create opportunities for myself. By doing this, I learned more than I could have ever imagined. Also, It is important to remember that you need to apply for multiple internships in advance, because it is becoming more and more competitive. Once you have an internship, make the most out of it!”

    Comment Nineteen

    • Title of Post: “Oh, Do I stink?” By: Meg Tidmore
    • Hyperlink: http://matidmore.wordpress.com/2010/02/01/oh-do-i-stink/
    • Date: April 23, 2010
    • Comment: “Hi Meg! Great advice! I agree with you about the importance of eye contact. This shows the employer that you care and want to take it seriously. Your body language is vital during an interview. Many people forget to focus on their body language, because they are more worried about what they are going to say in the interview. If you do not tune into your nonverbal language, it could be the death of your interview. One of the most important things that I learned from my experience, besides eye contact, is to smile. You want to show the employer that you are excited about the potential opportunity to work with them. I really enjoyed this post! Thanks!”

    Comment Twenty

    • Title of Post: “Internship Advice” By: Linsdey Townson
    • Hyperlink: http://prstudent2professional.wordpress.com/2010/02/16/internship-advice/
    • Date: April 23, 2010
    • Comment: Hi Lindsey! Last summer, I completed an internship with CNN. It was the most amazing experience and the connections that I made along the way are going to help me in the future. I will be graduating in May and not only have I been applying for jobs, but also internships. In my opinion, if you treat an internship like a job you have the potential to be offered a real position with the company. Even if you do not get a paid internship, you still need to work just as hard. The internship experience is what you make of it. Thanks for the great advice!

    Comment Twenty-one

    • Title of Post: “What to wear to an interview” By: Marie Walker
    • Hyperlink: http://marielorelei.wordpress.com/2010/02/05/what-to-wear-to-an-interview/
    • Date: April 23, 2010
    • Comment: Hi Marie! You are so right. Your appearance is the first thing you communicate to others. A first impression is everything. This is why what you wear to an interview is so important. As an employee, you are representing the company you work for. If someone walks into an interview with a sloppy attire, the employer will not be able to picture you working for their company. As you said, you need to dress to impress. To work in a professional environment, you need to dress like a professional. Thank you for the great tips!

    Comment Twenty-two

    • Title of Post: “Internship” By: Jeremy Watruba
    • Hyperlink: http://watruba.wordpress.com/2010/02/23/internship/
    • Date: April 23, 2010
    • Comment: “Hi Jeremy! You offered some really great advice. I agree, you do not need to focus on trying to find a paid internship (unless you have to for financial reasons). The experience will be the same either way, because you are the one who is in control. As I have said time and time again, an internship is what you make of it. If you want to be the one who runs errands, then by all means do so. However, if you want to learn everything you can, take initiative and tell your employer. They can use all the help they can get. I do have to say that I am jealous of your friend too. What an incredible experience! I believe you can do anything that you put your mind to. I really enjoyed this post! Great work!”

    Comment Twenty-three

    • Title of Post: “Dressing for the PR Job” By: Lauren Parr
    • Hyperlink: http://laur22.wordpress.com/2010/03/02/dressing-for-the-pr-job/
    • Date: April 23, 2010
    • Comment: “Hi Lauren! The way you dress has a major impact on your level of confidence. When it comes to dressing for an interview, it is crucial for you to feel confident as well as comfortable. The two go hand-in-hand. As you mentioned, younger generations have the misconception of what is appropriate to wear to an interview due to the skewed reality of TV. An interview is not the time or place for you to show off your newest edition to your wardrobe, unless it happens to be a new business suit. It is important to look like a professional, because in doing so, it will help you to feel and act as a professional. Thank you for sharing the great advice! Hopefully, the younger generations will use reliable resources such as the advice you gave before going to an interview.”  Read More…
    Posted by: kris10ly | January 22, 2010

    Distinguish Your Cover Letter

    Hello to all my future followers! To start off, I’d like to make an announcement. This is my first blog post ever (besides the “About Me”). Exciting, I know!

    The purpose of my blog is to share advice/tips on how to prepare yourself for a potential employer, with a focus on Public Relations (PR). This is centered around a class I’m taking, Public Relations Practicum (PR Practicum). I’d really enjoy as much feedback as possible–this is a learning experience for all of us!

    As you already know, judging by the title of this post, today I will be sharing several tips on how to write a cover letter. According to the first source I used, WinWay Resume Deluxe (purchased software), “The purpose of the cover letter is to introduce you to the potential employer, and refer that person to your enclosed resume for more detailed information.” A cover letter should be brief, to the point and no more than one page (WinWay). The potential employer wants to know what you can do for them, not what they can do for you. You may have a variety of experience, but you should only include those which are related to the position you are seeking (WinWay). Sorry to break it you, but they don’t want to hear your whole life story. Another important tip is to be “confident” and “up beat” (WinWay). If you’re not confident in yourself, how can you expect an employer to be confident in you? You can do anything you put your mind to, if you believe in yourself.

    Question, is your cover letter more important than your resume? The answer is, “Yes, yes and yes.” According to Resume-Resource, if you do not have a well-written cover letter that stands out from the rest, the potential employer may not even look at your resume. Now, I’m not saying that your resume isn’t as crucial, because it definitely is, however, if you don’t have a distinguished cover letter, your resume will never be considered (in most cases). The cover letter also allows the employer to see your writing skills, which is VERY important (practice, practice, practice).

    The last site I encourage you to look at is JobBank USA. You may be thinking, “How is JobBank USA a good source for cover letter tips?” When you check it out, you’ll see why I recommend it. The article is called, “Public Relations Cover Letter In a Nutshell,” by Jimmy Sweeney, author of “Amazing Cover Letter Creator.” The first section heading of the article is, “Why Public Relations Cover Letters Have to Be Perfect.” Sweeney says, “Besides being the best way to get an interview for a public relations job, the public relations cover letter practically IS an interview for a public relations job.” So true, am I right? You have to sell yourself. Be confident. Think of a cover letter as your first interview. The resume is the next step and then if the potential employer is really interested, you will be given a second interview. The last important tip I want to leave with you is to research as much as you can about the company you are looking to apply for. The more you know about them, the easier it is to write the cover letter. You can do this!

    There is a lot  more that goes into writing a good cover letter, but these were just a few that made an impact on me. If you have any questions, feel free to comment and I’ll be more than happy to respond!

    Stay tuned for next week’s post on… “Body Language & Nonverbal Communication in Job Interviews.”

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