As some of you may know, several months back I started at a new public relations firm. It wasn’t the first time. I was at my first job just four months before I decided it was time for a change. In public relations, there is a large portion of the professional population that find it easy to hop from place to place, either to climb the promotion ladder or work with a variety of interesting clients. I was never raised with that mentality. My father has been with his same company since before I was born, and I was raised to believe I would find the same kind of loyalty in my professional life. I never took my job changes lightly. But there are certain feelings you cannot ignore when you realize it’s time for a new track on your career path.
You’ve “hit the ceiling” - Maybe you’re stuck on an account because your firm is short staffed, and you’ve come to be the resident “expert” on the brand. But what if that account has absolutely nothing to do with where you want to go in your PR career? Or, you know you’ve been working at a level above your own, but because of company budget restraints you’re not eligible for a promotion for at least another 6-12 months. Should you simply just suck it up? You should never compare your work to your peers, but it is intimidating to know you’re working at a title you’ve surpassed or with clients you dislike, and it can easily lead to feelings of resentment with your company. Do a little digging, and see if there are any companies looking to hire at your true level with interesting clientele.
You’re overtired - We’ll be touching the subject of “how to say no” in another post, but if you are consistently working 15 hour days with no sign of a break, or if you feel your superiors are giving you too much work and taking your dedication for granted, it may be time for a move. Your PR company should know and understand your value and worth, in your professional AND personal life. There is no reason you should be in the office at one in the morning on a Wednesday, unless Brad Pitt just called and he’d like to represent your brand starting tomorrow.
The atmosphere just isn’t right - Maybe a large, global corporation isn’t for you after all. You think you’d prefer a mid-size or small firm to have more interaction with the company’s team. Or maybe you’re on the other end, and your boutique firm’s politics are driving you nuts. As we always say, it’s just as important for a PR firm to fit you as you fit the PR firm. It may have been your dream job when you graduated, but you’ve had some experience and feel that you know better now to move on. Do some research or ask fellow PR girls their experience at larger/smaller firms.
image via wikipedia.com