I’ve been struggling lately over my blog. It’s been dormant for a while and, quite frankly, it was intentional. There are a million and one things I could blog about, but I want to stay somewhat focused from a PR perspective.
The worst part of blogging is once you start, you really shouldn’t stop, especially when you get so much grief from friends who complain about your long absence from your last blog post.
I’ll let the theme of this blog post centre around getting that first PR internship position. I truly understand how important getting a foot in the door is because it can be a life altering meeting. Believe me, I’ve been there and I’m still grateful to this day that Edward Gould at NATIONAL PR took a chance on me 22 years ago. Thank you, Ed!
When you get a shot in front of a senior decision maker and you’re applying for that one internship position, here are a few pointers from a gal who has been there done that.
1. Do some research on the person interviewing you and the company. Check out their LinkedIn profile, read their blog/twitter posts, do an in-depth Google search on the company, and look for news about the company. Pretend you are cramming for a test. During the interview, pull a “Brian Linehan” kind of question – he was the best interviewer ever and totally shocked celebrities with his breakthrough questions. If you don’t know who he was, ask someone over 40.
2. Look great! Yup, I still believe you need to dress the part. Shoes, hair, makeup, nails – pay attention to the little details. The person interviewing you is not just sizing you up as an intern, but actually thinking, “Could I put this person in front of a client?”
3. When you get asked why you want the job, be really creative, insightful and profound. Comment on the company’s culture being a great fit or the kind of contribution you’d like to make. Make a direct correlation between you and the company.
4. A few don’ts: Don’t fidget, don’t check your mobile device, don’t take a phone call, don’t talk too much, don’t play with your hair and don’t ask stupid questions. Easy stuff.
5. Lastly. Ask when a decision will be made and follow up quickly with something creative. You need to stand out after the interview. Look like you want the job. It’s ok to be a little aggressive. You’ll look hungry. Just remember your ABCs: Always Be Closing... until you hear those three dreaded words, “No, thank-you.”