junior PRs: why it is time to speak up

No matter how much work you do behind the scenes, as a junior PR consultant, a client will never know who you are or why they are paying for your time unless you take an active role in meetings. Getting started with this can be tough for many people, especially when there is a large team of more senior folks in the room.

Here are my tips:

  1. Agree a role with your manager before you go in
  2. Own a bit of the agenda to run through / update on
  3. Keep something special to tell the client – a hit you got, an opportunity you secured or a new industry thing they might be interested in
  4. Ask questions….think of something before you go in
  5. Check their news daily – you won’t learn and feel confident offering an opinion if you don’t read
  6. Look at the headlines before every meeting – any customer or competitor been written about that day?
  7. Check the stock price, it’ll help you know what their focus is before the meeting
  8. Introduce yourself and explain your role on the account
  9. Listen in to as many calls as you can – good way of learning before you speak
  10. Listen in to media briefings – helps you know the ropes before you host them yourself
  11. Remember the client is paying for your time, always think about demonstrating value to them by making a contribution

Anything I missed?

This is cross posted with my employer’s blog

5 comments

  1. The Red Rocket · May 22, 2009

    Great tips – I wish someone had told me all this stuff when I started out. I always took a couple of trade mags with me in the car (partly to avoid talking to my old boss who I didn’t like).

    Doing a quick Google news search of their competitors doesn’t do any harm, as an extra.

    The other thing you sometimes (albeit rarely) see is the opposite end of the spectrum. Showboating, with way more confidence than is appropriate and looking like a plank.

  2. Rebecca McMichael · May 22, 2009

    Hi phil,

    thanks for taking the time to comment – much appreciated. Good additions too – love the showboating one….maybe a post about what NOT to do as a junior PR in meetings will be the follow up 🙂

    Becks

  3. Thirty Free · May 22, 2009

    Hi Becky,

    Feel like this one would be good to send to managers as well as junior PRs 🙂

    I really like the active approach your suggestions take, sio how about ‘Take Responsibility’ – e.g. realise that you come up with ideas or suggestions that you can discuss with your manager, who can then let you suggest it to the client if appropriate.

    Also, it would be great if we could cross post this to the Bright One blog (www.brightone.org.uk), which will of course be given full credit and linked back to any sites you want…

    Thanks,
    Ben

    • Rebecca McMichael · May 22, 2009

      Happy to Ben, let me know what you need me to do.

  4. Ben Matthews · May 22, 2009

    Great!

    Drop me a one line bio and a preferred photo (can take your avatar here if need be) and send it to ben @ brightone.org.uk

    Cheers!
    Ben

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