By: Chelsea Dowling
Returning to school after having a summer public relations internship is a bittersweet experience. I loved my summer internship at Burson-Marsteller, a global public relations agency, yet, I was eager to return to Michigan State University and apply new skills to my position at Hubbell Connections.
One of the key takeaways from my internship was the importance of making connections. Connections can help your clients succeed and can help you launch your career. Here are some ways that making connections will help you stand out as an intern and effectively reach your organizations goals:
Connect the Dots – as PR professionals it is our job to provide our clients or organization with strategic and creative public relations plans. It is crucial that the tactics and ideas we develop are interconnected and all work towards successfully achieving a common goal. Recognizing the importance of connecting the tactics and ideas will allow your inner PR star to shine.
Connect with your co-workers – PR is a social profession. We are required to develop relationships with clients, reporters, vendors, bloggers and the list goes on… It is easy to get caught up with client projects and assignments and to forget some of the most important relationships – the relationships with your co-workers. Establishing a positive relationship with your supervisor or manager is important so you can make the most out of your internship, but it is also important following your internship. Your supervisors and managers have been in the industry for a long time, so it is likely that they have lots of connections in the PR world. Be sure to establish relationships with these people and stay in touch when your internship ends, as they will be able to help you network when it comes time to look for your next internship or job.
Connect with your inner self – an internship is a learning experience. If a specific account or client within your organization sparks your interest, reach out to the individuals who work on that account to see if there are any projects they may need your help with. This will show that you are open to new assignments, that you are willing to help in any way you can and that you are eager to learn. Just be sure to check in with your supervisor to make sure that it is OK for you to branch out.