PR Executives…. Superheros Without A Cape

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The Agency Life

In the summer of 2013, I embarked upon a path that eventually led me to Northeastern University. I had just graduated with an M.B.A. in Marketing from Mumbai University and I was eager to commence my professional career. Having found my greatest ally in words and everything related to content, I joined Edelman a PR agency located in India, Mumbai as an Account Executive. Thus began my journey into the uncharted territory of a PR agency.

As the world’s largest PR agency, Edelman, offered me probably the steepest learning curve. I was reporting to not one but four supervisors heading different practice areas in the agency. The term ‘matrix structure’ which was until now just a textbook phenomenon had turned into a rather scary reality. In my year long stint with Edelman, my experiences ranged from rewarding to reprimanding. It was here that I witnessed first-hand the cut-throat competition, unrealistic client expectations, deadlines, journalist tantrums, and team conflicts. However, by the time I moved on to my next stint, I knew for sure that the day of a PR executive was no less than that of any super hero who was worthy of being the face of any ensemble cast. From saving distressed clients from the blushes to finding new allies in colleagues and fellow media persons, we did it all in a day’s time and were ready to take on new challenges the next day.

Super powers: disciplined, systematized and innovative

I joined Adfactors PR, India’s largest communications and PR consultancy after my year-long association with Edelman. It was here that I really understood the role and influence that a PR person can exude over clients and media alike.

Most working days of a PR executive starts with something known as a ‘to-do list’. This is generally e-mailed to you by the supervisor and you’re expected to tick-off all the enlisted tasks. But it only gets more intriguing from here on out because by the end of the day you’ve done something entirely different from what had been planned for you in the morning. No two days are similar in this industry and the term, ‘dynamic environment’ is only an understatement to describe the situation.

In order to keep on top of these ever-changing assignments, it is imperative for PR professional to be disciplined. Many-a-time, one is advised to develop the skill of multi-tasking, which is true but only to a certain extent. I say this with such conviction simply because without discipline in multi-tasking, you’re only going to wreck the multiple tasks at hand. One such instance that comes to mind is when a PR executive has more than one deliverable with the same deadline. Now, he can either focus on each task separately and deliver them on time or fall short of keeping all the commitments.

Another key aspect that I learned at Adfactors PR was that bringing structure to my work even basic mannerisms of reaching the office on time, decluttering the work area, and taking refreshment breaks at regular intervals, play a vital role in smoothly tackling even the most challenging work situations. When the work is organized it fosters in gaining composure in the midst of chaotic work schedules. Systematized work leads to innovation and creativity. Most PR professionals get to hear the phrase ‘think out-of-the-box’ from clients and supervisors. I believe that you can come up with creative campaign ideas and coherent communication strategies when they’re able to convincingly cope up with an array of tasks.

Reaping benefits and rewards

Although there are numerous challenges for a PR executive, so are the rewards. The euphoria of observing the success of a campaign or the elation of monitoring the growth of a brand can be best described only by being part of such PR teams. It is no less than breathing new life into something that was until now just a name or a symbol. But by implementing strategies and putting your super powers to optimum use, these names and symbols swiftly metamorphose into gigantic brands, envied and aspired by markets across geographies. Having garnered three years of PR agency experience in India, I came to Northeastern University last fall to learn, share and hone on my communication abilities with the brightest minds in the industry.

As I interact with my professors and peers in class, I recognize how PR is so much more than just gaining media footprints for client organizations. In fact, the function of communications departments within organizations only helps in strengthening relationships with an array of stakeholders. In conclusion, if it is in an agency or in an in-house communications department the PR executive needs to practice his super powers judiciously because as we all know by now, ‘with great power, comes great responsibility.

About our blogger: Sanjeet Chowdhury is a graduate student at Northeastern University pursuing a MS in Project Management. He has been a PR professional in Mumbai, India and was working with Edelman and Adfactors PR. With a strong background in content writing, media management and communications strategy development, he has been an integral part of communications teams for start-ups and conglomerates. Sanjeet is accomplished in martial arts and holds a Black belt in Karate. In his leisure time, Sanjeet enjoys swimming, tennis, writing, and traveling. Connect with him on LinkedIn, Facebook, or Instagram (@sanjeet2198).

Aerial View of Northeastern University

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The idea of having an aerial perspective has always thrilled me. I think it opens up an entirely new dimension in filming. The excitement of being able to see and capture the world from a whole new level drove me to buy a drone for aerial photography. I am glad I was able to get one after coming to the U.S. because my favorite pastime has become exploring new places and taking trips to fly my drone while capturing the beauty of Mother Nature. I also share all of my work on my Instagram account and YouTube channel.

Nestled in the heart of the city the Northeastern University campus always gave me an aura of life and energy with the students hustling through the campus sipping coffee and the ever-busy buildings. It has always been a very competitive and enthusiastic environment for me. Being a proud Northeastern student, the idea of capturing aerial views of the university excited me. I am glad that the video gathered some attention and was shared on multiple Facebook pages. Drones have become a very delicate issue and I was very cautious to avoid flying over crowds of people or even at peak times. Though I could not seek official permission from the university, I got an unofficial nod from NUPD with some restrictions. I filmed mostly early in the morning to avoid unnecessary attention. From buildings to art inside the campus, I tried my best to capture every detail which reminisced the “Northeastern experience.” To view the video click here.

The idea was to make a video to show my friends and family. Had I known that this video would get thousands of views I would have made sure to go the extra mile for getting the output more “presentable” and professional looking, but the entire experience was very fulfilling. While I am still an amateur in making videos and editing my passion drives me to learn and continue to be creative. I’ve always been an admirer of the beauty of Boston and  I plan to make more captivating videos capturing it’s beauty to share with my audiences.

Currently, Himanshu Chintalapudi is a graduate student majoring in Bioinformatics from College of Sciences at Northeastern University and will be graduating in 2018. He can be reached on the following:

Instagram: himanshu_34 (https://www.instagram.com/himanshu_34/)

YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/c/HimanshuChintalapudi

 

Beyond the Green Line: Denver, CO

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Beyond the Green Line: Denver, CO

BEYOND THE GREEN LINE is a blog series featured on the Northeastern University Career Development Blog, ‘The Works.’  Each post highlights a major city and gives you an inside look at the local food, culture, music scene, the industries that are thriving there, and some current job openings in the area.’

Denver is a wonderful place to live, earning the #1 ranking in U.S. News and World Report’s 2016 Best Places to Live.  Denver’s proximity to outdoor recreation, a progressive mind-set and its walkability were all cited as factors.  The city offers a strong economy for those pursuing work there.  According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 32,000 firms have set up shop in Denver in the past 4 years alone, perhaps a reason Denver is listed #1 on Forbes’ list of “The Best Places for Business and Careers”.  Ten Fortune 500 companies call Colorado home.  In Denver itself, Davita Healthcare is part of the Fortune 500 grouping and the Chipotle headquarters are just below that status.  

The Denver Relocation Guide notes:  

Due to its proximity to the mineral-rich Rocky Mountains, Denver has long been a home for mining and energy companies such as EnCana, Halliburton, Smith International, Newmont Mining and Noble Energy. Denver’s west-central location within the United States makes communication with both North American coasts, South America, Europe and Asia possible and benefits telecommunications industries including Quest Communications, Dish Network Corporation, Starz-Encore, DirecTV and Comcast.  The Denver area is also the home of several national chain restaurants; such as Chipotle Mexican Grill, Good Times Burgers and Frozen Custard, Noodles and Company, Qdoba Mexican Grill, Quizno’s and Smashburger; all of which were founded in Denver. Because of Denver’s almost-equal distance from Midwest cities (such as St. Louis and Chicago) and West Coast cities (such as San Diego and Los Angeles), Denver is also a storage and distribution hub for the country.

Northeastern students and alumni will appreciate the relatively young population of the area.  According the the Wall Street Journal, millennials are flocking to Denver, but the main reason “isn’t the nearby ski slopes, microbreweries or urban hiking trails… It’s the jobs.  The Northeastern Denver Alumni Chapter was established in 2012 and has been growing since. There are over 1,200 Huskies in Denver who can help you navigate the professional and social scene.  

One such Huskie, Kristen Lobo, a Business & Economics student on her third co-op in the Denver office of Bluewolf Group is a huge Denver fan as she states: “Living and working in Denver is so different from the hustle and bustle of Boston and other cities on the east coast. In Colorado, the spotlight is on Mother Nature, and even people with demanding jobs find time to participate in the many outdoor activities, whether it is joining a local kickball league, running through the city’s 85 miles of paved trails with their dogs, or driving up to the mountains to ski, snowboard, snowshoe, hike, climb, camp and more.

My favorite thing about Denver (besides our “300 days of sunshine”) is that so many residents are recent transplants like me who moved to the area simply because they love it. This appreciation drives a really positive mentality throughout the city and serves to enhance the excitement from being one of the rising tech hubs in the U.S.”

Food & Drink:

  • Cheeseburger:  trademarked in Denver
  • Craft beer
  • The snowball (official state drink)
  • Rocky mountain oysters
  • Green chili
  • Bison/Buffalo
  • The first Chipotle and the first Qdoba

Culture:

  • Biggest Cinco de Mayo parade in the U.S.
  • Denver Art Museum and the Wings Over Rockies Air and Space Museum
  • Go to the 3-day Great American Beer Festival, held every fall

Activities:

  • Cheer on the Colorado Rockies at Coors field and the Denver Broncos at Mile High Stadium
  • Mount Evans
  • Check out The Source, a new 26,000 square foot marketplace

 

Here are a sampling of top companies and job opportunities – Log into NUcareers through your MYNEU to explore and apply!

Ball Aerospace Job ID : 1822421 Thermal Engineer I
Job ID : 1822441 Engineer I – Mission Systems Engineering (System Operability)
Lockheed Martin Job ID : 1822453 Systems Engineer-IT Asc
Job ID : 1822471 Software Engineer Asc
Oakman Aerospace Job ID : 1822477 Aerospace Systems Engineer
Sierra Nevada Corporation Job ID : 1822479 Systems Engineer
Job ID : 1822481 Pricing Support Analyst I S
Job ID : 1822482 Program Planning & Scheduling Analyst
McNeil Gray & Rice Public Relations Job ID: 1822414 PR/Marketing Internship
Job ID:1822411 Public Relations Entry Level Position
Smashburger Job ID: 1822439 Lease Analyst
Job ID: 1822443 Lease Administrator
Job ID: 1822444 Product Manager, Digital Commerce
Job ID: 1822447 Procurement Coordinator
Job ID: 1822450 E-Commerce Marketing Manager
Job ID: 1822454 People Support Service Center Specialist (Bilingual)
Job ID: 1822458  IT Quality Assurance Engineer (Long Term Contract)
Centura Health  Job ID : 1822418 RN – Gen Med
Job ID : 1822420 Registered Nurse ICU
Job ID : 1822422 Registered Nurse PRN
DaVita Healthcare Job ID : 1822426 Project Analyst
Job ID : 1822431 Director, Internal Audit
Job ID : 1822432 Sr. UX Researcher
Denver Health Group Job ID : 1822435 Addictions Psychiatrist
Job ID : 1822438 Urgent Care Physician Job
Job ID : 1822442 Trauma and Acute Care Surgeon
HealthONE Corporations Job ID : 1822445 Interventional Radiology Technologist Lead
Job ID : 1822451 Registered Nurse
Job ID : 1822455Director Medical Staff Service
Job ID : 1822457 RN PRN (Wound Care)
Job ID : 1822459 Electrophysiology Nurse Practitioner
Job ID : 1822462 Registered Nurse (RN) – Infusion
Job ID : 1822468 Surgery Technician II
Job ID : 1822470 Nurse Manager – NICU III
SCL Health System Job ID : 1822474 RN Nurse Practitioner – Clinic
Job ID : 1822475 Director Patient Access
Job ID : 1822476 Mental Health Worker
Morse Corporation Job ID: 1822469 Robotics Software Engineer

Additional Companies:
Chipotle Mexican Grill
Qdoba Mexican Grill
DirecTV
Dish Network Corporation
Integer Group
Quest Communications
Noble Energy
United Launch Alliance (ULA)
Space Foundation

Coming Next: Beyond the Green Line – China

We want your feedback!

Feel free to leave us a comment if there’s anything we’ve missed or a particular city you’d like us to profile.  If you’d like to have your photos considered for the next post, send over your Denver photos now!

This post was authored by Melissa Glaser Rubin, a Career Development Contractor in Northeastern’s Career Development Department.  Melissa is a career specialist with previous experience in education and nonprofit management.  She has lived and worked in 5 states and traveled to 37 and loves exploring all that a city has to offer.  You can contact her at m.rubin@northeastern.edu.

Sources:

http://www.bizjournals.com/denver?t=1480614340

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/07/21/us/denvers-appeal-to-millennials-jobs-mountains-and-yes-weed.html

http://www.wsj.com/articles/denver-job-market-lures-millennials-1437698907

http://www.denverrelocationguide.com/Largest-Employers-in-Denver/