Month: November 2010

“HAPPO” Thanksgiving (How you can Help a PR Pro)

This Thanksgiving there is a lot I am grateful for. Family, friends, health, a home, those in the military working so hard to keep us all safe, great teachers for my children, and a career  I love working with people who inspire me every day. I believe that a great career is not something to be taken for granted. My philosophy is to work hard, really hard. Strive to learn something new every day. Listen, contribute, and don’t ever cease to appreciate the opportunities you have; demonstrate your gratitude with an effort to pay it forward.

Last February, after watching so many talented students and seasoned professionals struggle to find a position in a challenging economy, my friend Arik Hanson and I decided it was time to do something. We both knew of employers who were looking to hire, as well as those seeking jobs, and thought that there must be some way to leverage our two most valuable resources (time and relationships) to make a difference. “HAPPO” (Help a PR Pro Out) was born.  An impressive team of PR industry leaders (including #PRStudChat’s Deirdre Breakenridge) joined the effort as “champions” turning the campaign into a veritable movement.

PR professionals, students, educators, and recruiters can all participate in the HAPPO community. Whether you are looking for a job, need to fill a position, or simply want to pay it forward and be that person who helps make a difference, I’d encourage you to get involved. Here are a few steps you can take to “HAPPO”

  • Become an active participant in the HAPPO LinkedIn group. Take a moment to post a job, you’ve seen. Know someone who has posted a position? Leave a comment or refer someone in your network who seems like a good match.
  • Follow the #HAPPO hashtag on Twitter. Share opportunities you know have and introduce great professionals to the many recruiters and hiring pros who follow
  • Be a part of the live Twitter event on December 8th from 8-9 p.m. CT. Our past events have succeeded in connecting people with new jobs. Talk about making a difference! The theme this time is New Year’s Resolutions for PR Job Seekers–How to land a job in 2011. HAPPO champs from across the country (we’re at 35+ now!) will contribute to the discussion sharing tried-and-true job-seeking tips, resume building suggestions and interviewing advice. Look for posts from some of the HAPPO champs across the country in the weeks ahead sharing personal stories and advice and share the suggestions
  • Volunteer or participate in our first-ever online and offline “HAPPO Hour” event. The idea? To get job seekers, mentors, recruiters, agency/corporate PR leaders, and folks generally interested in helping the HAPPO cause, together in person for a couple hours in a number of U.S. cities to talk about job search strategies, resume tips and other job-search-related issues. Arik and I working to organize this event right now. If you’re interested in hosting an in-person event in your city on Jan. 27, please contact Arik or I right away!

Deirdre and I wish you a very Happy Thanksgiving!

#PRStudCast Episode 11.19.10 with Deirdre Breakenridge

Hope you enjoy the recap! If you have any favorite Tweets or ideas from last night’s chat, please post them below.

A big thank you to everyone who participated last night in the best #PRStudChat yet. Our community is still growing and last night was a great testament to what we are all about as public relations students and professionals. Can’t wait until the next chat!

#PRStudCast Episode 11.10.10 with Jason Mollica

Our Second episode is now live! Last night, we got to speak with Jason Mollica of Carr Communications about mentoring and how students can benefit from finding a great mentor.  We had a great discussion and it was our sincere pleasure to have Jason as our guest.

We also discussed a blog post written by Desiree Mahr about the Marie Claire blogging situation.  You can check the post out here! Weighing in on Marie Claire’s PR Disaster

We do have one question that we want to hear your opinions on though!

Do you think it is better to have one mentor, or do you think it is more effective to have multiple mentors to learn from?

Please leave your thoughts and comments below.

Looking forward to our next episode which will be following the #PRStudChat on Thursday, November 18th. Hope you enjoy today’s show and join us for next week’s show!

The First #PRStudCast with our guest Brandi Boatner!

#PRStudChat Community,

Deirdre, Valerie, Ashley, and I are happy to debut the First #PRStudCast!  Our first guest was past PRSSA National President Brandi Boatner.  We had a great conversation about Social Media in the Election and how to adapt your social media presence from being a student to a young professional.  Obviously we will continue to get better and sharper, but we hope that you enjoy our first episode!

Please feel free to leave comments and topic suggestions!  This is a project for all of us, and we need your feedback to grow and get better.

Best regards,

Harrison Kratz

You can listen to the podcast here:

Here are the links to the blogs we discussed in the episode

Brands Need to Focus on ROR: Return on Relationship

13 Social Vote Tips for #ElectionDay 2010

Don’t forget to vote for the winner of the 2010 #PRStudChat Challenge!

What are some of the most interesting ways PR professors are incorporating social media in the classroom? After reviewing many terrific nominations, we’ve narrowed down the finalists and now the choice is yours!

Please take a moment to learn more about the finalists and help us acknowledge their creative and successful efforts to bring social media into the classroom,

Thank you again to all of the professors and students who inspired us with their innovative examples of social media use in the classroom.  Best of luck to our finalists!

Making a difference

Earlier this week I read about  Sgt. Michael D. Kirspel, a 23 year old from a NJ town not far from where I live, who was killed fighting for Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan when insurgents attacked.

“He knew he was over there for a purpose,” said Kaceylee Sowinski , another friend of Kirspel’s who had just spoken to the fallen soldier earlier this week. “That was the whole reason he signed up with the Army — to make a difference.”

My heart went out to Sgt. Krispel’s family and friends. And I couldn’t help wondering how others who had close friends and family in the military must feel each time they read a story like this. Then my friend Justin Goldsborough reminded me of a project that he is working on at Fleishman HillardVFW ‘s Return the Favor .

The campaign is designed to collect online thank you notes and donations to “Return the Favor” to veterans and troops who have given so much to us and our country. During the month of November, the VFW Foundation will host a multimedia wall and visitors can post a thank you note by uploading a video, sharing a picture, tweeting with the hashtag #returnthefavor, posting a blog entry, or uploading a text post. I was thrilled to have an opportunity to say thank you to our veterans and troops, and proud of the important work our industry does in developing meaningful campaigns such as this.

The media can portray a fairly one dimensional look at the public industry (Be sure to check out this post from Sasha Halima on whether TV’s portrayal of PR women is detrimental to the profession’s future). Those who study and practice PR however, understand that “public relations” is not limited to publicity and promotion.  As noted in PRSA’s Business Case for Public Relations, PR is “a communications discipline that engages and informs key audiences, builds important relationships and brings vital information back into an organization for analysis and action. It has real, measurable impact on the achievement of strategic organizational goals.”

The field of public relations offers a very real and important opportunity to make a difference; to raise awareness and educate, to help communicate key messages, and to create opportunities to facilitate public discussions. The changing media landscape offers us infinite opportunities to do “social good.”  I’d urge each of you to take a moment and stop by the VFW’s VWall, for a great example of a cause campaign… and I hope while you are there you make the most of the opportunity to say thank you our active duty soldiers, veterans and their families.