Imagine being surrounded by the best fashion labels, having daily conversations with some of the coolest bloggers, stylists and brands in the nation, and getting to come to work everyday making a difference in an industry you’re passionate about. That dream became a reality for the talented and stylish Eugenia Dourakis who is managing Public Relations for one of Canada’s largest fashion brands, serving the most lucrative of clients, the established working woman and mommies of North America.
Landing a job in PR came naturally to Eugenia as she is charismatic as ever. She has climbed the ranks of Reitmans and now she’s sharing her tips on how to build the foundation and make your mark in the the PR world.
Tip #1: get an internship.
If you’re planning on getting into the PR industry, the best way to evaluate if it’s really for you is to Tip #1: get an internship. It’s the best way to learn the business and quite frankly will get you more experience than what you’d ever learn in a classroom. It also gives you a head start at getting into the industry, and provides you with the opportunity of evaluating how the positions offered within could help carve out your career path.
Tip #2: focus on the job at hand and the opportunity ahead will present itself.
When I was in university, everyone seemed to have a five-year plan but me. I had no idea what I wanted to do. I hadn’t set out to work in public relations – although it did pop up as one of the options in my professional assessment test back in high school, but I digress. My career path and the choices I have made along the way lead me to my current role. What got me here is my performance and the trust I have earned from my supervisors because of it, which brings me to Tip #2: focus on the job at hand and the opportunity ahead will present itself. You don’t know where your current job will take you or who will help you get there, but kick butt now and the next step will become clear.
Tip #3: find a mentor to learn from and share your long-term goals with.
Having never studied in public relations, I have learned the only way to push forward and excel is to find people who can help me get to where I want to go next. Tip #3: Find a mentor to learn from and share your long-term goals with. Increase your chances of success by having a mentor who has the perspective and experience you can benefit from, and who can help you better define your career path. This could be your manager or if you’re working on the client side cultivate your relationship with the PR agencies mandated to work on your campaigns. Sometimes, it’s easy to get lost in the day-to-day functions of PR, but when you have clear objectives a mentor can help you stay on course.
Tip #4: build successful relationships.
Not surprisingly, being in public relations means dealing with colleagues, or clients, on a daily basis. The next tip comes from one my favorite books, Leave Your Mark, by Aliza Licht, who says that the key to a job well done is in the relationships you build and the trust that manifests from them. This couldn’t be truer. The friendlier you are the more effective you will be at your job. Why? Because at some point or another you’ll have an idea to pitch and if you don’t have a relationship with that person, they won’t go out of their way for you. It’s as simple as that. Tip #4: build successful relationships and people will go out of their way to do what they can for you.
Tip #5: Be prepared to do your research.
Being in the PR industry, you are sometimes given the opportunity to work with public figures or industry influencers. What I’ve learned from working on those types of campaigns is that doing your research on the partners you plan on working with beforehand is everything. Knowing what they love, what their values are, and why they are a good fit will give you all the content you need to put together your communication tools: press releases, social content, etc. and it’ll reflect positively on you that you’ve done your due diligence. So, go online and find what you can from the resources available to you, don’t wait for someone else to hand the information over to you.
Get in contact with Eugenia on twitter at @eu_dou_
+ follow her on instagram at @instajendou