Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Goals for 2010

This year, I'm not going to come up with my usual New Year's resolution, which is something meaningless that I thought of around 11:45 p.m. on December 31st. After some inspiration from a great blogger, Matt Cheuvront of Life Without Pants, I'll be making a real list and goals I will actively pursue in 2010. Be sure to check out his post at

I'm changing things up with this post; it's not necessarily about public relations or social media, other than my own goals for those. My list will include professional goals, but also some personal ones because all work and no play leads to a lot of stress. I also think it's important that I be specific with my goals. I can easily say I'll try to blog more in 2010. But if I say, I will blog at least once per week, then I have something to stick to. So, without further ado, here's my list:

1. Blog at least once per week
2. Read the NYTimes every day (even if it's just top stories)
3. Attend more guest speakers (There are a lot at the Newhouse School, and I go to many, but I also make excuses for not going to many.)
4. Go skydiving (graduates from my program plan to after graduation)
5. Read more books for fun (One per month)
6. Comment more on other people's blogs (At least once every other day)
7. Find a nonprofit I'm passionate about, and volunteer my time (Since graduating from undergrad, I feel I've been less involved in charitable work).
8. Buy a car, preferably a better one than my last P.O.S.
9. Find an internship at a technology PR agency in New York City or Boston where I can learn a lot.
10. Find a job at a technology PR agency in Boston, where I can be passionate about my work, and continue to learn and grow.

Those are my New Year's resolutions. I feel they are all attainable, and I truly think that sticking to these goals will help me feel more fulfilled professionally, and allow me to have some fun. I'm excited about 2010, but I won't lie, I'm also scared out of my mind. This year, I graduate, again, but this time for good. I'll receive my master's degree in public relations, and I won't return back to school. This means, I'm facing the real world. No more government funded living (through student loans), no more sleeping in because class doesn't start until noon, and no more professors with incredible feeback on all my work. Instead, I'll have many more bills to pay on top of my rent, I'll wake up early 5 days a week and probably work more than 8 hours a day, and I'll probably be scrambling to impress my boss and prove to him or her that they chose the right person for the job. I'm excited though, because I thrive on pressure. And I know that wherever I end up, I will be the right person for the job, because I'll be passionate about it. I chose to get a graduate degree in public relations because I truly love it. I love the many different forms it comes in, I love that it's always evolving, I love the pressure of deadlines, and I love doing something I love.

In the end, all of my goals allow me to do something I love, and that's what New Year's resolutions should be all about. Not sure if this is necessarily a PR thought, but that's definitely my thought for the day.

Image is taken from Google Images.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Time Management for the Long Run

This post is related to time management, not necessarily in your daily routine, though of course that's important. More so, however, I stress the importance of time management for the long run. Daily, I try to fill my down time with something productive, such as reading relevant blogs or researching books I'd like to buy. For the long run, I also try to mazimize my down time.

By this, I mean that I try not to look at off-time as just a relaxing vacation. Right now, I have a month off from graduate school, and a month off from work, since I also work at the university's business school. I could do a few things with this time; catch up with college and high school friends from home; take advantage of my parents' subscriptions to movie channels, catch up on some TV shows I've missed while at school; or I could stay relevant and get more experience in PR.

Well, I've made my decision. I am staying connected to my old friends, but I am also making new connections, while I get more experience with PR. Thanks to a good friend of mine, I was contacted with a great opportunity to do some PR work for a nonprofit organization, CYCLE Kids, while I'm home. The organization itself is great, implementing bicycling programs at inner city schools to teach healthy living styles. The executive director is giving me an amazing opportunity, allowing me to work on some great PR stuff. The best part is, she's really listening to my ideas. Sure, she needs help with all the traditional stuff like media pitches and press releases, but when she asked for my opinion, she was really listening. That's empowering. She's even letting me run with an idea about a digital sound slides video to post online. This experience will truly allow me to grow into a more empowered PR professional.

Beyond this work though, I'm looking into some other great opportunities while I'm home in Boston. I'm taking advantage of the high presence of tech PR firms here and I plan on attending as many guest speakers and events as possible. Unfortunately, I missed a great one today with John Cass, but I know there will be more great opportunities.

The first week of January, I'm headed down to Florida to visit my grandparents, and I plan to experience that trip with my PR goggles on as I visit different sights (including my favorite place, the Magic Kingdom). I haven't visited Florida since I was much younger, and I think that it will be a different experience with my new PR outlook.

Of course, most PR students know to get involved while in school, joining different organization like PRSSA, and getting internships and such experiences. It's the off-time that many of us don't take advantage of. Basically, time management for the long run comes down to taking advantage of every opportunity, even when you're on vacation. That's my PR thought for the day.

Image taken from Google images