Braving the Whirlwind of PR

san jose pr internship

By Kristin Greenfield, Intern

As I braced myself for a vortex of relentless work, demanding clients and tight deadlines, I realized I may have been overpreparing — just a tiny bit!

While PR is known to be a fast-moving profession — and I have had my fair share of those whirlwind weeks — I was relieved to find that the Hoffman engine is not always set to full throttle. There were weeks where I had time to catch my breath. Furthermore, even during (and especially during) those weeks of mayhem, my teammates were always available for me to lean on for support. I learned to embrace the chaos, and it was during those times of havoc that I was stretched the most and experienced higher levels of growth.

My heart used to race when my account leads asked me to tackle a critical task like an end-of-month report or a byline. But I found in reality that they weren’t as spine-chillingly scary as they were in my head. Most of the time, something similar had been done before, so there was already a set format to use as a guide. Teammates were usually available and more than happy to provide help, brainstorm ideas or just act as a second set of eyes to review the content before I shared with the rest of the team.

Another thing that eased some of my anxieties was reframing my mindset to think of assignments as a first draft rather than a masterpiece. As I quickly learned, every piece of content goes through multiple rounds of people to buff out all the snags and make it client-ready, so my first stab at it didn’t have to be perfect.

When I began my internship, I felt frustrated at how long it took me to complete tasks that seemed simple. How hard can it be to add 25 names to a media list? What is so challenging about compiling a list of timely topics related to my client? But I have learned to give myself grace in this new environment.

“Semiconductor speak” truly does feel like learning a brand-new language. And as I have gained more familiarity with both the programs and the industry, I’ve gotten speedier at finishing assignments, and I look forward to my Harvest report breakdowns which offer a tangible way to watch the number of hours spent on a project go down each week.

Finally, I would like to advocate for admitting when you don’t have the bandwidth to take on another assignment. At first, I felt hesitant turning down opportunities because I feared it would reflect poorly on my work ethic. But I learned that it is more important to communicate my limits rather than trying to do it all and sacrificing quality in the process.

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