Standing in front of a group is not everyone’s strong suit. But if you often find yourself leading a discussion or presenting ideas to groups you already have some of the skills necessary for a career in Public Relations. Confidence talking to a wide, possibly diverse spectrum of people is necessary.
While Public Relations job descriptions will vary, often it will be essential for the PR specialist to deal with journalists and media organizations on behalf of the company. Good verbal skills are imperative so that journalists get the company’s story right. Misquotes or ill-conceived ideas can thwart a company’s PR campaign.
Besides top notch verbal skills a Public Relations career will require strong writing skills. Often it is this person’s job to produce press releases. A press release needs to be created quickly as it involves news that is pertinent in the moment. News organizations will not publicize old news. A good press release will need some creativity so that it gets published and read by the company’s constituents. Lastly it may need to be persuasive to create a call to action. This call to action may be to show up at an event, or pick up a book or vote for an idea.
Often a PR executive oversees the publishing of the company’s annual reports. If employed with a small company the report may lay solely on the PR exec. In larger firms the PR person may oversea a team of graphic artists, writers, finance personnel and technical strategists.
Articles and newsletters are produced by companies as either a matter of routine or when special events are posted. A PR person will write articles for newspaper or blog publication. Be aware of news publishing protocols will aid the PR writer’s credibility in this market. Newsletters generated monthly or quarterly often circulate to company members or can act as an introduction to the company.
Verbal and written communication skills are only a portion of a Public Relations person’s career but as you see it is a critical chunk.