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Career Story: President Of A Small Public Relations Firm

President Of A Small Public Relations Firm

Job Title: President Of Small Business

Type of Company: I run a small strategic communications and public relations firm.

Education: BA in Political Communication, The George Washington University

Previous Experience: I spend 15 years working for 3 Members of Congress (Two Senators and a House Member) on Capitol Hill in DC in communications and strategy. I then worked for an large advertising agency as Senior Vice President for Corporate Communications.

Job Tasks: My clients are businesses, non-profits, and trade associations that interact in some way with government at the local, state or federal level. They pay me to help them define their business with the news media, policy makers, and elected officials. For a number of my clients, I serve as the spokesman on their behalf with the media.

I spend a good deal of time reading about the local, state and national news especially as it relates to public policy decisions that affect my clients. I represent a large public university system, a business trade association, a green energy company, a healthcare provider, a large financial institution and a software company. I spent a good deal of time talking with members of the media, talking with my clients, and interacting with elected officials and their staffs. I developed my professional communications skills by working for politicians and in campaigns. My clients rely on me to help them effectively work with the news media -- and to get their side of the story on a particular issue into the public arena.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: I enjoy working with the news media. Reporters are some of the most interesting people you will ever meet. I follow public policy debates and politics closely and I look forward to reading the newspaper every day because it is an essential part of how I help my clients. I enjoy developing message strategies and working with smart people that bring different skills and perspectives to a problem. I like the challenge of finding and competing for new clients. I don't enjoy the financial and accounting part of my business as much.

Job Tips:
1. Get a liberal arts education that develops your ability to think critically and develop a basic understanding of history and culture.

2. Do several internships -- not just one -- in the field that you want to work. The experience will be invaluable.

3. Follow the news. Understand what the major challenges and issues are facing your local community, state and the nation.

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