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How a PR training course made me love PR again

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I once wrote a love letter to PR on this very website, because PR is my first love of marketing. However, sometimes PR can feel like you’re in an unhealthy relationship where you give a lot but nothing comes back.

You might think your perfectly honed pitch is a can’t fail and will get you that much sought after piece of coverage, but when silence is the only outcome, you wonder where you went wrong. Constantly clicking send/receive is just the same as sitting by your phone isn’t it?

I guess I’ve kind’ve accepted this and I’m in it for the long haul, I love PR and all that comes with it. All the sweat and panic is worth it when you open up a fresh copy of Computer Weekly / Daily Express / Western Mail and see your client featured. But what do you do if you’ve fallen out of love with it? Or any profession for that matter? Do you turn your back on it and walk away? Maybe. Or do you find new ways to fan the flames of passion?

I did just that - but I didn’t expect to feel the way I did, nor was I feeling hugely dispassionate about my role. But after a training session with freelancer Suzanne Bearne at the very funky Bristol spirit, I came away feeling completely besotted with my chosen profession.

After twenty years in this job, I didn’t think there was anything I didn’t know. I know that sounds full of myself but after a certain amount of time, you can say that right? But actually, Suzanne taught me a lot of things that I’d either forgotten about, taken for granted or just hadn’t even considered.

Things like looking through magazines for new opportunities, or joining new forums or just knowing how journalists use Twitter was a revelation to me. I came away feeling rejuvenated and ready to review everything I thought I knew about trying to secure coverage.

I often say about people in their 20s being full of optimism and hope but actually I felt just like that and thinking about it, couldn’t we all do that in our career? And a career is a bit like a relationship right? You need to work at it to keep the love nights are an excuse to reacquaint yourself with your partner - rediscover those things you forgot or took for granted, and that’s what this course did for me and PR. It was my career date night! It made me think that some of us who’ve been in the same career for a while might dismiss a training day because they think they can’t learn or they’ve seen it all, when we absolutely shouldn’t.

I also want to point out a couple of health warnings on the above - I’m not advocating staying in a role you hate nor that a training course will solve all your woes, but it certainly worked for me. Also, I know my career isn’t the same as my relationship (just in case my husband does read this, you’re of course top of the list). But it’s just a simple thing I’d forgotten, go on a course and rediscover all about your profession and it might suck you in again and make you feel all excited and loved up.

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