Public relations is amongst the most popular career choices for graduates. While this area may be viewed as glamorous and exciting, it is also worth noting that intense competition exists to enter, that high standards are demanded and hours can be long. the CIPR (Chartered Insitute of Public relations) estimates that there are over 48,000 people working in PR roles in the UK.
Public Relations professionals can work ‘in-house’ or for a consultancy/agency. Some consultancies specialise in one sector, e.g. healthcare, IT, consumer.
PR activities include:
- interacting with the media;
- writing and editing;
- planning, research and evaluation;
- event management.
- Lobbying is also within the PR sector, and involves persuading policy makers and/or putting a particular viewpoint across to influential people such as MPs. Lobbying can be done in-house, e.g. for a charity or NGO, or by a specialist consultancy.
This weeks feature is Hana Esselink an experienced PR, writer and communications officer with a colourful freelance background.
Name: Hana Esselink
Industry: PR, press and communications
Job Title: Freelance writer and communications officer
- What was the last album you bought? Sam’s Town, the Killers
- Who is your favourite celebrity? Nelson Mandela and Angelina Jolie
- What books are on your bedside table? How to interpret the Tarot, Salmon fishing in the Yemen
- What is your favourite accent? New Zealand (on men)
- Items for Room 101? A photo of my grandma
- What is your favourite holiday? India (Taj Mahal)
- Who is your least favourite person? Wouldn’t like to say, ok then, George Bush
- What was the last thing that made you smile? A guy at speakers corner
- What was the last film that you saw? Michael Clayton (and it was brill)
- What is your biggest irritation? Flaky people
- How did you get started in this industry? At Ealing council as a freelance journo working on the first Holocaust memorial day exhibition
- What tips would you give someone starting out in this industry? Work hard, don’t worry about ego-tripping journos and stay true to yourself
- What has been the best moment of your career to date? There’s two – working on the climate change bill – (the UK is leading the way on climate change world-wide) and the Holocaust exhibition at Ealing council
- What is the most valuable skill you have learnt in your career? The ability to communicate verbally and in writing to a variety of people across the board
- What three adjectives might other people use to describe your personality? Passionate, driven, honest
- And what three adjectives would you use to describe your job? n/a all contracts are different!
- What do you hope to achieve in your career in the next decade? The ability to reach a variety of audiences and to make a difference (no matter how small) to an interesting organisation
- When did you last go on holiday and where did you go? Two weeks ago to Brazil and then Amsterdam
- What do you spend your money on? Clothes, sponsoring a child, travelling, life coaching sessions
- If I knew then what I know now… I would have been a wiser person, but I believe we only know what we’re meant to know at certain points in our lives! Try that for quote of the day!