Podcast: Side notes With Shannon

April 30, 2010 at 1:34 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , , )

This podcast was based on a previous blog post I wrote titled “Brownies are Not Cupcakes.”

Show Notes

 

Show Title

Side Notes with Shannon

Topic

Miscommunications and Public Relations

Table of Contents

0 – 26 seconds – Theme Music

27 – 1:07 seconds – Show Introduction

1:08 – 1:35 – Background of Topic

1:36 – 2:01 – Miscommunications of Intent: Brownies are not cupcakes

2:02 – 2:20 – Brownies, Cupcakes, and Public Relations

2:21 – 2:56 – Point about Miscommunication by Angeliki Tzane

2:57 – 3:18 – E-zine Article “Why Miscommunication Creates Personal Conflict”

3:19 – 3:37 – How to Improve Communication

3:41- 4:05 – Asynchronous Communication

4:06 – 4:23 – Closing Remarks

4:24 – 4:49 – Closing Theme Music

Sources 

Angeliki Tzanne – Talking at cross-purposes: the dynamics of miscommunication

Ms. Tzanne’s bio at the University of Athens, Greece

E-Zine Article – Tristan Loo – Why miscommunication creates personal conflict?

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Blog Responses

April 8, 2010 at 8:13 pm (Uncategorized)

Comment # 1
Social Media is a Double-edged Sword, Allison Almon
April 8, 2010

When we were assigned the blog on social media I never thought of its hiring possibilities, only the hindrances we face with our many media accounts. Thank you for the different perspective. I took your advice and I viewed the mashable website and I think I’m going to apply some of the 7 tips, like searching for people and adding blogs that have career opportunities. I’m finally going to get a twitter, just not today. I completely agree with you on social media being a double-edged sword. While it’s great to put yourself out there it is scary that you lose a lot of your privacy too. I totally agree with Haley my resistance to social media is because of the stalkers. I’ve never had one, probably won’t have one, but who wants to risk that kind of creepiness?

Comment #2
PR Open Mic, Meghan Beytagh
April 8, 2010

I’m glad that you went over what PR Open Mic was. I have one and I don’t use it. I honestly thought that it was something only Georgia Southern had so I wrote it off. Now I think I might begin to use it. I think I could use the blogs to find answers to my questions or provide a different perspective on something related to public relations and marketing. It’s really nice to have a social media site that is dedicated to solely to our profession. It’s like a public relations linkedin. While typing this response I went to the website to look at blogs and it had me sign in. the first time I had both my password and email wrong, the second time I had just my password wrong. I like this site for the simple fact that it told me which one was wrong.

Comment #3
Internships, Kristen Bixby
April 8, 2010

I agree with pretty much everything you’ve said.  I have found that this has been a lesson in culture shock. The transition from going to class for three hours to working eight hours a day in one place was tough. At my internship I’m expected to work and I like it. The only difference with what you said is while I’m expected to know how to do the basics I’m still allowed and expected to ask questions. You mentioned good grades and that jogged a memory of a conversation I had with one of my co-workers, she said that what matters most aren’t always the grades you have but the job experience you obtain. She encourages all students to do multiple internships.

Comment # 4
Podcast: “J.Cam’s Hour”, Jessica Cameron
April 9, 2010

I don’t listen to many podcasts, but I read your play list and was intrigued. Working at a non-profit that is considered an attraction (the Atlanta History Center), we plan several big exhibits a year and I wanted to know how you engaged the public. So that maybe I could apply what you do for your sorority to the History Center’s exhibits. From listening to your podcast I personally gained more from when you talked about not worrying the day of the event. I’m applying that with aspects of my internship. I get so stressed about whether or not professors are giving their students the information that I’m providing ( I want our exhibits to be a success), but I have to remember that I did the best that I could. Thank you for bringing up the point of not stressing.

Comment #5
Internship Advice, Micaela Carter
April 9, 2010

Graduation is less than a month away, are you so excited? I know I am. I totally agree with your statements on how much you grow during your internship. After this experience I know that I can do and handle so much more than I thought I could. I had always doubted my pr abilities while on campus. Now, after my internship I’m confident in the skills that we’ve learned from Georgia Southern. Also, having a mentor is fantastic. I know that when I leave my internship I not only have one person I can call for advice but several different people. One of your tips was to create a daily log, my log is emailed to my boss everyday so that she knows what I’m working on and it keeps me accountable. You can’t slack off when your boss sees your work every day. My daily reports will also help me write my end of term paper. Thank you for the extra internship tips.

Comment #6
Home for the Holidays: Listening to Your College Student, Barbara Nixon
April 9, 2010

Thanks for posting your parental perspective about returning college students. Your post was focused on your son’s freshman year, but as a senior I never thought I would ever come home just to do laundry (it’s a $1.50 a load, plus the basements a little creepy, and I was a little homesick). While there’s no pecking order at my house I was dropped from the voicemail and a riding lawn mower took my spot in the garage. Your last point about listening is so true, just in reverse. At times I find myself talking to my parents more as an adult and it scares me just as much as it probably scares them too.

Comment #7
Practicum Blog Comments (25), Marie Walker
April 12, 2010

This is in response to blog response 13 “In Vogue at the Interview” by Allison Allmond.

I think with what Allison’s post is trying to say is that fashion moves forward and this includes interview attire.  I agree with you on the leeriness of wearing geometric patterns, I’m thinking Pucci here. But, if a person were inclined to wear these patterns they could go for muted colors or earth tones, or maybe just not at all. I agree with you Marie, the challenge does become knowing or trying to figure out what the job interviewer considers as non-traditional. Maybe there could be a healthy balance between the bright colors, ruffles, and conservative suits. Like a traditional suit with a brightly colored bracelet. Coral and Turquoise are not necessarily bright colors but they are brighter than just the standard black, blue and white. Both of these two colors are both bright and conservative creating a fashionable balance.

PS. I love the number maker you used for your response to my blog, it made me smile.

Comment # 8
Resume & Cover Letter Tips, Marilyn Lintel
April 12, 2010

I agree with you comment about not lying on your resume. With your tips on having several people read over your cover letter I would have one of those people at least be familiar with how you convey ideas verbal and written. For instance, my best friend edits and revises most of my work with me; she knows (or can figure out) what I’m trying to say and “translate” so to speak. Do you find that you have a hard time writing cover letters? I have a few bullet points on my cover letter, what is your opinion on this?

Comment #9
Reaction to a Career Services Event: Dining for Success, Marie Walker
April 12, 2010

Thank you for the information on how to appropriately place your silverware at the end of a meal. This past weekend I was indirectly confronted with placing my silverware properly. A family friend was slightly reprimanding her son about proper placement of his dinnerware. I was waiting to see what I was going to do, just out of curiosity and because I myself didn’t know. So thank you. The wine situation is all together baffling, so many to choose from beyond just the simple white or red.  You brought up the tip, its origins are cool. But would you consider tipping as a way of supplemental income, regardless of service? Of course the tip would be higher the better the service.

Comment #10
You Can’t Fake Nonverbals, Allison Allmond
April 12, 2010

While I don’t have enough hair to twirl I do catch myself trying to tuck my hair behind my ear, maybe its phantom hair (at one point I had shoulder-length hair)? I personally love nonverbal communication because it tells so much more than words. The crazy thing about most of these nonverbal cues and reactions happen so quickly that we ourselves don’t notice them. Sometimes the person looking at us doesn’t ‘notice’ them put does pick up subconsciously. I believe that I read somewhere that the unaware but noticed body movements occur with the eyebrow raise. We quickly raise our eyebrows when we are truly interested.

Comment # 11
Reading Notes, Lauren Parr 
April 16, 2010

 I should have read this book, because I find social media so overwhelming. I enjoy blogging, but that other stuff, I just find so time consuming to want to be bothered with it. But, I’ll do it to build my brand. Tags are really nice. It was cool just reading a blog and seeing that one of my posts had come up in the other relevant posts box, because of the tags I had used. As I was reading you post it occurred to me that as a society today we are giving up so much of our personal lives to make these digital connections and it made me resent some of the social media out there.

Comment #12

Tiger Woods and PR… What Will It Do? , Lauren Parr  
April 17, 2010

 I agree with Brittany, this is a PR issue. I also think it breached the boundaries of good taste. Changing a person’s opinions is tough. I don’t think that this commercial changed my opinion of him. I don’t feel like he’s been absolved in the court of public opinion. I understand that they were trying to make him look like he was truly sorry, but I don’t buy it. Why not have his mother as him those questions. It wasn’t a man that hurt, it was the women closest to him that hurt, his wife, mother, and daughter. I think his PR team should have had him take a little more time away from the game, only dropping bits of media in regards to how he was trying to build his family life back. Things like taking his mother to lunch or playing with his kids in the park.

Comment #13
The Viral Video Phenomena, Lauren Parr
April 17, 2010

 It is amazing, how many people just watch the video. Thinking about it now, all of the viral videos that I watched were because someone told me about it. Word of mouth is still the best form of publicity it seems. Do you think that viral videos really only work when the intention isn’t to go viral? People are smart and they know when they are being sold to, that is what I feel like when PR boutiques try to make a viral video to sell something. As frustrating as this concept is, PR firms making viral videos; I think it’s pretty cool that the videos are taken into consideration and included into marketing plans.

Comment # 14
Interview with a PR Professional, Lauren Parr 
April 17, 2010

 That’s really cool that you have Rich as a contact. I’m glad you chose him to interview to give us students a different perspective about public relations. This interview shows that sometimes the job you do isn’t necessarily the degree you have. For instance, I know a lady with a degree in sociology and she’s does logistics for corporate events like conferences. Of the three pieces of advice Rich gave I think busy work is my favorite part of the day. My busy work happens to be scanning the newspapers and magazines, updating the publicity boards, and tracking coupons. Don’t get me wrong I enjoy writing press releases and fact sheets, making press kits, and things like that; but it’s seeing the media run a piece on your company that’s exciting for me.

Comment # 15
Delicious Thoughts, Lauren Parr
April 17, 2010

My roommate mentioned the web site Delicious once when she was in a programming or technology class. To me delicious was just another word associated with food. I wonder what the programmers reasons were for naming the site Delicious. It’s nice to know that there is a site out there for sharing web information easily with other people. There is such an array of web content that is designed to help us, but keeping up with everything does become overwhelming. And something that was designed to be a tool, something to help us, ends up becoming a time consuming burden. I also agree with you and marielorelei about knowing what my favorite sites are. The only reason I could see using Delicious besides for a group project would be to find the websites that people of similar interest visit.

Comment #16
Internship Advice for Beginners, Lauren Parr
April 17, 2010

 I was intensely stressed with the thought of having to find and complete an internship. Fortunately, I attended the Mocktails event, networked, and landed my internship. While at my internship I have a better understanding about what I want to do in public relations, if I choose to stay in this field. I work at a non-profit that has a small marketing department so this has allowed me to have a lot of responsibilities as if I were at a start-up. When I saw the tip to ‘be the go to person at all times’ I thought, “Well, that’s really hard, when you don’t have much time to build the trust of your employer.” Sometimes I wish my internship were longer just because I’ve finally gotten into a workplace groove and feel secure in what I’m doing and I finally feel comfortable asking questions.

Comment #17
PR Reality Shows, Lauren Parr
April 17, 2010

 Reality shows are never really the reality that you experience. Glamour and drama bring rating and that mainly what investors care about. People who watch these shows don’t want to see someone sitting at the computer for 8 hours a day creating contact databases or stuffing 200 envelopes with long range calendars. That stuff isn’t necessarily the most fun stuff to do, but I can guarantee that it’s definitely not fun to watch. I’ll do the tasks, but I won’t watch someone else do it. I guess it depends on where you intern or work, as the marketing intern I don’t plan or even attend events if I don’t want to. It would be nice to see the shows participates sit down a la “Housewives of ________” and talk about what actually happened when the cameras weren’t rolling.  I know that these shows really affected my perception of public relations.

Comment #18
Lauren Parr’s Comment # 6: “Meh or Shmy, 2010 is Just Another Year”, Jeremy Popper
April 18, 2010

 So I read a little bit of your comment about Jeremy Popper’s blog post, then I read his post to understand why you were refreshed. And I agree, it was really refreshing to have someone not sugar coat public relations and social media. I disagreed with you both on social media changing the world, not that it won’t because it already is. Look at how news on CNN is presented, we can send in our own iReports, follow our favorite anchors on Twitter, and receive mobile update of story coverage. While things might be changing I, like you, enjoy regular blogs, more than I would ever enjoy twitter or other forms of social media. I feel that they’ve become clutter, in turn doesn’t help anyone. Thanks for finding this blogger Lauren.

 Comment #19
What Makes a Video a Viral Video, Marie Lorelei
April 18, 2010

 Like you, viral videos don’t impact my life unless someone else mentions it. Still, I most likely won’t watch it. I didn’t see the “Charlie bit me” video until Professor Nixon showed it in class one day. It’s crazy to think that some companies actually study viral videos. Your comment that a viral video makes “viewers feel duty bound to pass it along,” this backs up a comment stated in another post that I thought viral video worked mainly because of word of mouth. One of the cooler things is when a video goes viral to the point of other people making their own viral video spin-off or it even gets picked up on network television like the Office.

 Comment #20
Lauren Parr’s Comment # 12: “Foursquare: a New Way to Track Waldo,” Jeff Carter
April 18, 2010

 Your comment was so funny, my sentiments exactly. While I do have an internet enabled phone I never use that feature, it kills my battery and a computer is really never more than a few feet away at a given time. Like you I don’t think I would every use Foursquare. I’m not dumb, but I just don’t have the mental capacity to stuff one more piece of social media into my head. There’s also the time factor. When everyone else begins to wonder where their privacy went, those of us who didn’t share our entire lives with the world should toast to privacy. I foresee where one day reality will be like walking around in the SIMs, those who are supper connected will have giant glowing gems atop their heads; the rest of us who knows, maybe flowers.

Comment #21
Social Media Resume?, Mackenzie Stratton
April 18, 2010

 I love the idea of having a social media section on resumes. The question now is how you find the space; I have a hard time getting all of the pertinent information to fit on a single page. The nice thing about social media is that you can link back to you online resume. I think linking my social media like blogs, Facebook, and LinkedIn back to my online resume and vice versa is a good way for students to build a stronger online and interpersonal brand. While I use one of my blogs to let friends and family know what I’m doing and the other for school, I reference both because they show the diversity of my writing and the array of topics that interest me.

 Comment #22
T.O. W #8 – Podcasting, Mackenzie Stratton
April 18, 2010

 Thanks for the information on Podcast. I’m in Nixon’s Practicum class and we had the option of doing several types of portfolios or none at all. I opted to a digital portfolio in the form of a website; because I think knowing how to create a website is beneficial as well as building a brand. But, the one part I’m dreading the most is having to create a podcast. All of the positive things you said still couldn’t change my mind. Podcasts man can I not stand them, it’s like listening to one long radio commercial. For me the only positive thing about podcasting is the ability to easily take it with you. Sorry for the rant.

Comment #23
The Visibility of a Search Engine, Jeff Carter
April 18, 2010

 I think one of my favorite phrases today is, “just google it.” I have seriously called a friend up to ask them a question, if they don’t know, I frustrating tell them and myself that I’ll “just google it.”  You know something’s major when a product becomes a verb. The astonishing thing about the statistic you presented is that it’s only the percentage of adults who use search engines, but not how often. Could you image what that number would look like? Or the number of searches performed in google every second? Very true, I don’t think I make one major purchase without looking to what other bloggers have said about the product or the company. Jeff, I love how you said search engines are proving that social media is taking over our lives.

Comment #24
Correct Body Language In Your Interviewing Process, Jessica of Planet Jess
April 18, 2010

 I totally agree with kdwhigham about men giving weak handshakes. I find that either a man will give me an extremely weak handshake or a death grip; it doesn’t help that I wear two rings on my shaking hand and they squeeze so tightly that it causes my rings to pinch. Instead of leaving a positive impression they leave a memory of pain. It’s kind of unfortunate that 55% of first impressions are based on body language. I would think that future employers would like to see a bit of nervousness in a potential employee. There’s the possibility of it showing that the person values the position.

Comment #25
Tips for Writing Cover Letter, Candice Hall
April 18, 2010

I know how you feel with trying to cram everything on a single page. Working on my resume has made me a master manipulator of Microsoft Word. Like Jessica, I always thought that I was mediocre until I applied for a part-time job and the hiring manager said that I was very diverse and well qualified, big confidence boost. I applied the point that you wrote about cover letters needing to quick and easy to read, by writing first and bullet pointing some of the skills and projects that I’ve done on my internship. I also like how you added the slide on the language that should be used in your cover letter. I’m going to change mine right away. Thank you.

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24 Hr. Bangkok Special

April 8, 2010 at 6:55 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , )

Democracy Monument BangkokOne of our online class’s blog assignments was to attend a session presented by Career Services. My concern about this assignment had been growing since the beginning of the semester, “How am I going to fulfill this requirement when I’m 4 hours away from school?”

I didn’t want to take a day off of work for a program that I didn’t feel would be truly beneficial to me (and the fact that I was a little nervous about asking to take the day).  

The semester was drawing closer and closer to a close and I still hadn’t attended an event. I had missed the major career fair of the semester (How was it? Were there many PR jobs?)  I should not have feared Career Services came through!

Lately, I’ve been considering a career with the government, so imagine my excitement when I checked my GSU email at work and in my in-box was an email about a Department of State info session. So,I called my dad to tell him about it (we talk a lot about job and career stuff), he rather colorfully told me to get my butt in the car as soon as possible, tell my boss I would need the next day off for job stuff.  I worked up the nerve and asked my boss for the day (she was really supportive). I was off to my info session with the Department of State sometimes referred to as the State Department.

The Department of State does three things, protect American security, increase American prosperity, and promote American values.

They do this by overseeing and implementing the U.S.’s foreign policy in five different areas: Management Affairs, Consular Affairs, Political Affairs, Economic Affairs, and Public Diplomacy (or Public Affairs).

During the hour-long session the current Diplomat in Residence, Paul Rowe, went over all of the many places he had served. While interesting it wasn’t what I had initially come for. I wanted to know more about public diplomacy, the ins and outs of the application process, and would he be there to guide us through the process like a career counselor?

It was here in the middle of his sales pitch that he mentioned one of the benefits of Bangkok, their 24 hour suit special; he was even wearing one that day. This was one of the funnier points in the hour-long information session

By the end of the session I had learned some pretty interesting facts about the Department of State, but none of what I initially came for. Did you know that a Diplomat in Residence is the equivalent to a Two Star General? The only time the five departments were addressed was when he explained that when you take your entrance exam you choose the department that you would be working in for the rest of your time as an officer with the department. That scared me, what if you chose wrong, you’re stuck.

While the information session wasn’t all that I thought it would be it did help me in another career area of my life. Coupled with the information I had received at the session and my experience at my internship it helped me solidify that I definitely wanted to do public affairs for the Air Force.

Career Services can be more helpful than you think.

http://www.state.gov/www/budget/2000-01_sshow/sld002.html

http://future.state.gov/what/career/139242.htm

http://students.georgiasouthern.edu/career/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Department_of_state

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Brownies are NOT Cupcakes

April 8, 2010 at 4:06 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , , )

Tuesday I went on my first collegiate visit. It didn’t go quiet like how I planned, but things never seem to go as I expect (side note: must expect to expect the unexpected).

Essentially, there was a miscommunication in the intention of the meeting. Here is how my boss Leigh explained it how miscommunications happen, you go into a bake shop wanting to trade a cupcake for a cupcake, but the shop only trades brownies. You’re not going to trade your cupcake for a brownie and the brownie guy isn’t willing to trade his brownie for your cupcake. Both might be sweet and delicious, but it’s not what you want. That’s when you say, “oh, can you tell me who the person is that trades cupcakes?”

I went into that meeting expecting to trade cupcakes for cupcakes and ended up with brownies.

Miscommunication happens, you learn from it; here’s what I learned from it:

– In the initial communication (e-mail, phone, in-person, etc.) be explicitly clean are about the intention of the meeting. “I want to tell you about “xyz” and what I have going on there and how I would work with you to get information that is potentially beneficial to your audience?”

– Sometimes you have to snoop around after your meeting to find more pertinent information. So don your goggles and scarf and become the Flying Ace.

– The importance of keeping to the details of the meeting. Stick to the purpose and time of the meeting.

I still have several questions, like what to do when a meeting goes severely off-track?

What do you suggest? Have you ever had a meeting that didn’t go as planned? What was it, how did you get it back on track, and what did you learn to apply to your next meeting that was similar?

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The New Rules of Marketing & PR

March 3, 2010 at 4:26 am (Uncategorized) (, )

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Hula and Interning… A Lot More In Common Than You Would Expect

February 13, 2010 at 5:44 am (Uncategorized) (, , , , , )

Two men from Ke Kai O Kahiki

Ever since I returned from my holiday in Hawaii I’ve been trying to bring bits of paradise here to the cold, brown, mainland. To do this I’ve been trying to find as much information as I can about hula.

I bet you’re wondering how the hula kahiko (ancient hula) applies to an internship? It does just trust me and follow along.

The other day I had a little breakdown at work. Telling two of my co-workers (not my boss) that I absolutely hated Atlanta and even the state of Georgia; it’s cold, brown, and dead. I miss, even crave my green, tropical climates (Florida, Hawai’i). I have voiced how much I dislike the city that I’m in, it’s actually a love/hate relationship[, part of the time I love it and am excited to be here, other times I can’t stand it and wish it would blow away (it can’t fall into an ocean since it’s not near one, real convenient Atlanta, real convenient).

So, after I made myself look like an idiot and an unfortunately ungrateful intern (on the contrary, I’m thankful for the place, people, experiences I’m being afforded) my mind was jogged back to two hula proverbs that I had stumbled upon in my studies.

“E nana, e ho’olohe. E pa’a ka waha, e hana ka lima”

Watch, listen. Keep the mouth closed, and the hands busy. One learns by listening and observing. Ask questions only after you’ve tried to figure out something yourself.

I had realized what I was doing wrong. I was listening, observing, and working, but I hadn’t keep my mouth shut, or silenced my fears to allow all of the knowledge that my teachers have to be trying to give me, therefore, making me unreceptive to lesson.

There, tied in hula and interning. See, it wasn’t so bad.

Also, With Lent just a few days away I have chosen not necessarily give up complaining, but act with humility, give my new home a chance and follow “E nana, e ho’olohe. E pa’a ka waha, e hana ka lima”

Side note, I think apart of the pre-internship process, both the student and professor should discuss the adjustment process of relocating. I love where I work, but the adjustment to a new environment has been quite a challenge.

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The Tides of Interning

February 2, 2010 at 9:00 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , , , )

If someone asked me to describe my work life as a PR/Marketing Intern I would tell them that it is like the tide. There are highs and lows with hundreds of other little projects and deadlines swirling around you affecting those highs and lows. All of these things can make you feel like you’re a dingy in the vast ocean. Some days you’re riding the tide and you move swiftly across the ocean closer to your destination. Other days, you’re capsizing in the chaos that surrounds you. Gratefully, these days are punctuated with days of extreme calm, to get you ready for the next series of tides.

The high days are ones of extreme productivity (sending out e-mails, meetings, and writing), contact success (seeing your work in the paper, getting your PSA on the radio, or building new relationships), or just a fun day at the office (department meetings and LOST). I would describe my lows as days where it feels like the databases won’t end; a day when as hard as I try to understand (big picture and emotionally) why I’m doing something and I still don’t get it; days were I’m convinced that I should have gotten my degree in something other than Public Relations, these are the days that are the worst. These are the days where I ask the God to grant me grace like Princess Diana and a light like Jesus.

Today, today happens to be a high day.

It didn’t begin that way though, as I was walking out of my apartment, head held low, I told the Lord, “Lord, if today doesn’t go well, I don’t know what I’m going to do; I just need your help cause I’m really feeling like going home, I need something that’s going to make me want to stay.” Moments like these lead me to verbally acknowledge my gratitude for where I work. I have innumerable sources of information about all sorts of things, each willing to give me the knowledge that they have. This is an honor and a blessing.

But, back to work

I never really know what I will be presented with until I’m actually at work. For instance, I found out today that I will be writing press release for Sheep to Shawl, an event happening on campus. Wednesday, I’ll be attending an AMTA meeting tomorrow. Thursday, I’ll be welcoming our guests from the Atlanta Convention and Visitor’s Bureau and Ecuador! Overall, I got a LOT accomplished today.

The things I mentioned before excite me, the high days; these are the things that I make me look forward to work. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind creating databases and sending out hundreds of emails. It’s finding the thrill and sense of purpose in each task that’s a challenge.

The overarching challenged that I am currently facing is synthesizing the big picture. The difficulty in achieving this synthesis I believes comes from my age. I want the understanding right now! I’ve grown up in the age of instant gratification, success driven work, and the need for purpose in all aspects of one’s life. It feels like my generation has unintentionally been set up for failure. I work hard and diligently and I expect success right away.

I think what drives me every day, even more than the thought of graduation (this is the last thought actually)is that there will be success in the end. I need to consciously enjoy the ride; bring myself back to the present and figure out a ways to turn each moment into a learning experience. The destination will be reached, but only if I go through the highs and lows of the ocean voyage.

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Football and Cover Letters?

January 22, 2010 at 12:53 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , )

I began working on this post a few days ago, but as always I find that I am working on now; a few hours shy of the deadline.

So, what is a cover letter? My understanding of a cover letter is like this, it is your personal statement for why you are the best applicant for that position. Wikipedia states that it is your introduction to your potential employer, explaining why you would be suitable for the job.

Many of the sites I perused expressed that employers most likely wouldn’t even look at your resume unless it had a cover letter. Other sites said that in today’s world a resume without a cover letter is just lazy.
For my internship, it was required by my professor that I write a cover letter. To me the cover letter is one of the most daunting pieces of the application puzzle (it’s all really challenging). “If I write this does it make me sound too eager,” or “What’s the best way to say this to get them to call me back,” even; “Should I say this tastefully provocative statement that would pique their interests or will it cause me to go in file 13?” These were just a few of the questions that flew through my mind.

To make writing your cover letter a little easier here are a few tips and sites that I found to be really helpful.

1.Research. I know that many PR students dread research, but it pays to know. Knowing more than just the basics about the company and the job you are applying for puts you ahead of the competition that didn’t do their research. Know and understand the company’s needs. Through researching the companies mission, goal, founder, current standing in the market place, even members of their board; you have a better understanding of the company’s culture. The time you put into research shows your desire for wanting to work for the company. Ultimately, just be familiar with who you’re dealing with.

2.Determine your selling points. Craft your top 5 best attributes that suit what they are looking for.

3.Review. I have now made it a personal habit to have 1-3 other people read over my cover letter to tell me what they think. If I’m nervous about saying something, but I’m confident in what I wrote, I send it. If they don’t extend the invitation to interview, I accept the possibility that they felt that I wasn’t the right fit for their company. Hey, they know their company dynamics, right?

~ Cover Letters That Sell

~ Cover Letter Help From About.com

Thinking about your cover letter in terms of football might make writing your letter easier (it is the South’s unofficial religion, right?).

You know what you have, but do you know what your opponent (employer) has? Players and coaches watch hours and hours of film, this is their research. They come up with a plan that best suits that particular opponent (job). If you know your opponent has a weak run-game, you play to the advantage that you run like the wind (determining your selling point). Tell them why you would make their game better.
Review; after the game review the tape to see where you missed your cover. Have your coaches (professional) critique you. The more time you spend practicing, reviewing, and working out strong the player. The more time you spend making your team better (you) the better your chances are at winning the Super Bowl (Job!!!)

Here is a little motivational quote from Og Mandio:
“Each failure to sell will increase your chances for success at your next attempt.”

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Top 10 Things I learned in PR Pubs

December 2, 2009 at 1:36 pm (Uncategorized)

I was mistaken in my last post, this is officially my last post for the semester. Now it’s time to focus on finals, packing, and the holidays. Here is my list of the 10 things I learned in PR Pubs.

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It Ain’t Easy Bein’ Green

November 30, 2009 at 2:42 pm (Uncategorized)

Well, this is my last official post for the semester. It has gone by so quickly. Seeing that foliage is changing to the festive colors of fall I decided to write about my favorite color GREEN!

What comes to mind when you think green? Kermit the Frog, hybrid cars, Oz, money? Well, for many it envokes the feelings of serenity and friendliness. It symbolizes envy and jealousy.

Green just so happens to be a complimentary color of red. It is exactly opposite of this color on the color wheel and is created by mixing the other two primary colors together.  It seems that nature had it just right when it created green to be the companion of red, especially now, considering that we are only a few days past Thanksgiving and the Christmas decorations of red and green have alreadygone up.

I bet you’re wondering what is difficult about green. Well, it is at the center of the light spectrum (the center of it’s own light world) making it the least arousing of all the colors. Or the fact that if you wear red with it you atomatically look like one of Santa’s elfs. Case in point, would love to wear my green shirts with my red Toms, but I can’t too close to elfin. Although these are the funny little difficulities with green it does have its redeeming qualities; which are:

  • it works weel with white, and looks good grayed, warmed or cooled
  • Muted shade of green attract readers eyes better than bright shades
  • Green tint screens hold pages down
  • Green bars work well around photographs with green in them
  • It works best when you want readers to fulfill an exact task.

Although, green is probably the least liked color I hoped this post caused you to realize the wonderous beauties about the color green.

Wishing you happy holidays and a Grand semester

Shannon M.

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