Top Skills for a Public Relations Professional

As I’ve mentioned before, it’s pretty safe to say that as of the past couple months, and for the next six months to come, I have been and will remain in a constant state of semi-panic about entering the real world of public relations. Will I ever get a job? Will it be something I actually enjoy? Will I be behind in the social media aspects of the public relations industry? After talking myself down from the ledge (metaphorically speaking, come on people) on more than one occassion, I have realized that I just need to start (it’s never too late to start, right?) honing my skills I’ve already acquired, and also working on new skills. I came across this article from Dave Fleet‘s webpage about 14 skills and attributes desired for new public relations professionals.

Of course, there were the typical skills that I have learned about since Communications 101 like writing skills, communication skills, attention to detail, and a good work ethic (all of these taken verbatim from his post of course), but there is also a semi-surprising (maybe not surprising to social media experts like our generation, but perhaps to an older generation of public relations professionals) list of other skills and attributes that are extremely desirable:
– Blogging
– Microblogging
– Social Networking tools
– Coding
– Blogger Relations
– Social Media Ethics

Interesting how three out of these seven skills involved some kind of blogging, eh? How can it be that a simple knowledge of how to blog, and how to blog successfully by reaching an audience, is such a desirable trait in public relations professionals these days? This is simply the direction public relations has taken. I can’t stress it enough that although I may not always be quite on board, social media is the new word of mouth, even though word of mouth is still considered to be the most effective form of communication. I now say this to all of you (but mostly to myself): Embrace the future. Take advantage of social media and force yourself to become an avid part of it. Because if you don’t? Well, you’re pretty much screwed.


~ by emily074 on December 9, 2009.

One Response to “Top Skills for a Public Relations Professional”

  1. So i actually just wrote about this. I agree with you that social media skills are essential to the public relations world but i feel as if people are becoming too dependent on facebook and twitter to do the work of social networking. This new trend makes sense when you think about how dependent people are on their phones and computers. It is almost that we have this internal dependence on technology to socialize and everything else. I love facebook just as the much as the next person but i make sure that i am still making valuable person to person connections. Though we are lucky because we have taken classes that teach us to use social media and such!

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