Name: Emma-Jane Edwards
Job title: Team Assistant
Employer: Pelham Bell Pottinger
Find Emma-Jane on Twitter: @emmajaneedwards.
How did I get started in PR?
I actually had my heart set on being a journalist when I was growing up, however, after a short stint working at my local newspaper in Portsmouth, it dawned on me how it definitely wasn't what I had imagined it to be. So after a few Google searches I discovered PR and decided to do that instead. I undertook a degree in Public Relations at the University of the Arts London, which I supported with placements at Borkowski and Freud Communications during holiday periods. On graduation, I was offered the position of Communications Assistant at the CIPR, where I supported the PR Manager and Director of Policy of Communications, and eventually being promoted to PR Executive. Nine months later I was offered the role of Team Assistant at Pelham Bell Pottinger, supporting a team of eight working across property, mining, leisure and TMT clients.
What motivates me about my job?
The variety of the job motivates me and the drive within the office to do well – there are so many talented people at the company it makes everybody strive to do better. And as Pelham has such a diverse range of clients, and I am lucky enough to work on a team that work across all of them, things are always interesting.
What skills do I need to do my job?
The key skill that I need to possess to do my job well is attention to detail – if I miss something simple it can cause endless problems for the rest of the team. I think this will be a skill that will serve me well throughout my career.
What do I want to do next?
Hopefully, I will continue to develop my knowledge and skills at Pelham and work upwards in the ranks – the company is very supportive of internal career progression and offers various training – both formally and informally within the teams.
What advice do I have for someone considering a career in PR?
If I was going to offer any advice to somebody starting up in public relations I would suggest pack in as much experience whilst you are studying as possible – should it be the odd day here or there or a full-time placement in the holidays. When I was interviewing for my first job, the fact that I had gone out and put so much of my own time, unpaid, into getting experience really said something about how determined I was to do well.
Failing that – blog and make connections on social networks such as Twitter. I regret not starting up a blog when I was a student – that's something that I wish I could go back and change.