March 30, 2022 dausa1
Colleen Kelly

A Taste of PR Agency Life

By Colleen Kelly

Being part of Hawk Communications this semester allowed me to see what working in an agency setting is like. It quickly taught me how to work on a team and take on a leadership role when needed. 

This semester I had the privilege of working with The Monarchs which is an organization dedicated to serving those with special needs while helping them learn to skate and play hockey. I also had the privilege of working with the Red Hawk Sports Network which is a partnership between The School of Communication and Media and the athletic department. 

At the start of the semester, I was timid and hesitated from asking certain questions because I did not know how well they would go over, but I learned to step out of my comfort zone and ask those types of questions. I learned that it is good to feel uncomfortable when asking certain questions because it shows that you care about the client and that you are dedicated to trying new things so they can reach the goals they set for the team. I also learned to be aggressive to ensure the team is getting everything done on time. We learned each person’s strengths and interests, made us confident in the content we were producing. 

A new task I learned from Hawk Communications is how to pitch organizations on new ideas and concepts. This was something I always heard about in other classes, but I never learned how to do it myself. Once I learned this skill, I realized quickly how often it is used in the agency world. Throughout the semester I sent emails to schools in hopes of getting new kids to come out to the practices, and the subject line was where I had to pitch to principles, secretaries, and board members that opening my email up was important. Before this class I never would have realized how important a subject line in an email is and also how to “sell” your client in a few words to intrigue people to read more.

Throughout the semester I attended a handful of practices for The Monarchs where I learned how to introduce myself to the coaches, staff, and parents so they were aware of what I was doing. I learned it is always important to arrive 10 minutes before the start time of the event so that you can get yourself situated and talk with your team to review tasks.

While I don’t find myself to be a shy person, this class pushed me out of my comfort zone when speaking to clients. Along with that, learning how to hold everyone accountable for their tasks was something I struggled with a little because I never wanted to come off rude when having to remind people that deadlines needed to be met. I also learned that follow up emails, while they may seem like a bother are almost always a good idea. The biggest takeaway from this class was learning professionalism when speaking to clients. After working with two clients for a whole semester, I feel more prepared to work for a company and know how to appropriately speak to everyone and better pitch my ideas through excellent writing and positioning.