PR intern experience: dipping your toes into the workplace

23 May

by Carina Nguyen, 2014 Cicero intern

Cicero Communications’ Women in Super Mother’s Day Classic Internship is one I will never forget.

During the past four months as PR intern at Cicero Communications I’ve had the opportunity to refine my skills, put my communication skills to the test and learnt how to push my own boundaries.

This internship isn’t just about updating databases and writing media releases, there is so much more to it.

I’ve built relationships with bloggers, I’ve met and talked to so many wonderful people along the way and was able to see all my efforts come to fruition on the day of the event.

I even created a social media strategy for Instagram and can proudly say I achieved all of my objectives.

The Mother’s Day Classic event went by so quickly!

It was an amazing day in Brisbane and the atmosphere was ebullient. I took photographs of the masses dressed in different shades of pink, managed the national Instagram account and interviewed participants as they crossed the finish line – I was told their reasons for doing the MDC, and their stories of loss and triumph.

The MDC internship was a huge learning curve for me. Before starting I didn’t have as much confidence in dealing with the media as I do now. 

I can admit cold calling was a daunting experience for me. 

I guess I was afraid of rejection or annoying the person on the other side of the line. It sounds silly, I know, but it was something I had to face and deal with because cold calling is inevitable in PR.

I realised I had to stop overthinking so much before making the call and just dial, and be as confident, convincing and kind as possible.

By taking this approach I was able to work much more efficiently and productively.

As my internship comes to an end, what I can take from this experience is confidence in dealing with the media, closer attention to detail, a good understanding of how media relations operates and a portfolio which I know will be invaluable when securing my first PR job.

If I could give any advice to future interns it would be: give everything your best effort, put in 110% and don’t be afraid to make mistakes, because you will make some, and it’s okay. It’s all a part of the learning experience.

Pay close attention to detail, especially when compiling media lists and databases. This means double-checking names, email addresses and phone numbers. It’s easy to have a missing letter in an email address or a missing dot.

If you have a skill to share, take the opportunity to demonstrate it, you never know, it could be of great use to the client.

Take initiative, offer new and fresh ideas and try to step out of your boundaries.

Not many interns can say they have assisted in a national event – seize the opportunity, learn as much as you can and have fun!

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2 thoughts on “PR intern experience: dipping your toes into the workplace

  1. Hello Carina,

    We’re thrilled to hear that you enjoyed your internship working on the Women in Super Mother’s Day Classic campaign.

    As the beneficiary of the Mother’s Day Classic, the National Breast Cancer Foundation depends heavily on paid staff and volunteers to help us do the work that we do – funding research for the prevention and cure of breast cancer. You play an important role in our organisation and the wider community.

    We thank you for all your time and hard work and wish you luck in your career in public relations.

    NBCF x

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