Update!!!

•December 28, 2008 • Leave a Comment


Okay, so I’ve been away for a while now, but here’s why: I found a job!!!

Sounds great, doesn’t it…well, it has it’s disappointments. Five months ago, my job search came to dismal disappointment with no opportunities or even interviews in sight. I admit that I may not have had a great deal of experience, but for someone who had just graduated, I had an excellent resume.  Nevertheless, I found myself at the door of a temp agency.  They loved my resume and sent me to a job interview the very next week.  I found out at the interview that the job was only for 4 weeks.  Normally, I would have never agreed to take it, but I needed the experience and the corporate culture of the company was very much inline with what I was looking for.

After the four weeks, they asked me to stay on for another week, than another week, and now it has been almost 4 months that I’ve worked for this organization.  And I should add that they are absolutely a wonderful organization to work for. Despite being hired as an “event coordinator” they have given me the opportunity to utilize my skills by writing articles, creating panels, helping with the communications department and so much more.

So what is the problem, you are asking yourself…the problem is the temp agency.  They had originally told me that I would only be under contract with them for the first three months of joining any company.  Now, they are stating that it is in fact for the first 600 hours that I work for the company.  They are taking $10 / hr for every hour that I work.  That is 30% of what I’m making.

I can’t see the justice in paying a temp agency nearly $6,000 for doing nothing at all.  In fact, when they sent me for the interview, they did not confirm the interview time with the organization, so I ended up looking like a fool when I should up.  It took a few minutes and a number of phone calls to reveal that my incompetant agency had made the mistake. To date, they have not provided me with a copy of the contract, they do not answer my questions properly when I call and I feel like I’m a prisoner to these people.

Take it from me, you are better off networking and finding a job on your own as appose to trusting such companies.  If you have been following the news in the last month or so, you know that the government is now looking into these agencies and their conduct.  Hopefully laws regulating their actions will be implemented in the near future, until than, keep away!!!

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Job Search

•June 23, 2008 • 1 Comment

Alas, the day has come.  It’s time to look for a permanent, full-time employment. Easier said than done…I know.

I was pondering the other day about my choices and the steps I need to take.  That’s when I came up with the following analogy: 

 

Deciding you want a career in Communications / PR – Alarm clock rings

Getting admitted into the program – getting out of bed

Finding an internship – washing your face and getting dressed

Finishing your internship – taking your last sip of the coffee and picking up your keys

Finding a job – walking out the door

The hard part is not knowing what awaits in the world once you leave the house.  Who do you know that can help you? What if there are no jobs? Where will you apply? When will you know if you got the job?  How will you know if you should take the job? 

 

I am still working through a number of these questions, however, I have learned a few things talking to my fellow classmates: 1) networking truly works…talk to your professors, your classmates, family members, friends, your internship employer, join CPRs 2) your resume is imperative…make sure its flawless and that it is specifically related to the job your applying to 3) look at job sites for listings…please check out the page “Job Search Sites” on the right panel

I wish you all luck on your searches and I will continue to update you on my progress… 

OPP Plane Conference

•May 9, 2008 • 1 Comment

Monday May 5,2008– Moving Ontario Forward Together

It seems that this career gets more exciting as it progresses. On Monday, the OPP held a press conference to announce the introduction of the new OPP plane. It will be used on 400 series highways to ensure the safety of the public through air surveillance.

Despite numerous campaigns, amendments in the law and deterrents, people continue to drive at high speeds which result in injury and death. The OPP plane is an efficient tool to get these people off the roads.

The exciting part of the conference for me was the dignitaries that were present. Commissioner Julian Fantino and Premier Dalton McGuinty, both of whom were very polite and friendly people, announced the introduction of the plane. Almost every news channel was present.

I have posted the photographs I took at the event on the side panel. Feel free to look at them and let me know what you think. I’m presently trying to perfect my photography techniques for a rainy day where they will come in handy.

As Communicators and PR experts you know that that day will be coming sooner than later. lol

Internship

•April 24, 2008 • Leave a Comment

I’m sure it won’t come as a shock to most of you that my excuse for being MIA is my internship.

 

If you’ve gone through the gruelling experience of researching the best internship for your skill set and personality; created a strategic plan in approach the organization; attained an interview; and finally began, you would know that it is not easy.

 

Luckily, I went through it and survived.  Better yet, I absolutely love it.

 

I am interning at the communications department of the OPP, where I have been able to work on proposals, events, research and so much more.  I have implemented almost every skill I’ve attained in school.

 

Previous to starting, I was told that government pace would be slow and boring.  Contrary to that belief, it has been one project after another.  I’m in my third week and possibly on my ninth assignment.  I will admit that there is a great deal of red tape and approval necessary; however, you will discover that you will always be busy.

I will keep you all posted on how the world on Corporate Communications and PR is treating me.

Press Conference

•March 6, 2008 • 2 Comments

On Tuesday March 4, 2008 I officially attended my first press conference.  The Toronto EMS, whom I have been assisting recently, announced the addition of 12-lead ECG unites to their advance level of care.

It was very intriguing to see the event unfold from the perspective of the host rather than the viewer.  The team started crossing off their checklists from early morning at headquarters, than preceded to the location of the conference where everyone (including the multimedia crew, paramedics, administrative staff and so forth) helped to set up. 

CTV, CBC, Global and a few cultural newspapers arrived moments before the 1 p.m. start time.  I always assumed that the media arrived much in advance to set up their cameras and stands, but to my surprise it took these professionals seconds to pull out their cameras and begin filming.

The event went very smoothly.  The special guests arrived on time, the speakers where informative and the paramedics doing the demonstrations where great.

The most interesting part was seeing what footage the media chose to air.  It’s not always what you would think they should use, but the lack of control is an aspect of press conferences that PR professionals must embrace.

Delta Media

•February 28, 2008 • 1 Comment

This morning, I found myself searching different PR sites that would be interesting enough to add to my del.icio.us.  That’s when I came across Delta Media.  The thing that caught my attention immediately was the title “The Art and Science of Strategic Communication.”

I have never seen nor heard any organization refer to communication as an art and a science.  However, for those of us studying it or working in the field, there is no question that logic, pattern, formulas and mathematical statistics are just as important as the language, the visuals and the medium used.

 I have added Delta Media to the list of Canadian PR firms because it shows intuition and understanding of what our profession requires.

Interviews

•February 14, 2008 • Leave a Comment

This may come as a shocker, but I haven’t done an interview in over eight years. So you could imagine how stressful it has been going out to internship interviews in that last few weeks.

I finally did my last one today and I hope this will be the end of them for sometime. However, for those of you who are still going through the interview process, I’ve come along some very helpful hints. Please check the page titled “Interview Hints”.

Also, remember that if you are still in school there are a number of resources you can tap into. The school’s internal websites often have sections on how to prepare. There are always interview specialists on campus to help you prepare resumes, cover letters, do mock interviews and to go over details of the specific job you are applying for.

Good luck everybody!!!