Hacked Off Flack

A lazy man’s guide to succeeding in PR

Date: 27 February 2012 13:39

Just because I am lazy does not mean I don’t get anything done. Quite the reverse. I am rather an expert on achieving maximum results for minimum effort. Which is always a good thing in PR, as clients are always keen for campaigns that get them the greatest exposure for the least amount of investment.

So here are my top tips for succeeding in PR jobs without breaking into a sweat:

1. Learn how to delegate. They say if you want to get something done, you should give it to someone who’s busy. I quite agree. That’s why I make sure I offload all the important stuff to executives with the heaviest workloads.

2. Don’t write press releases. All those hours you spend crafting the perfect press release are usually wasted. Just pick up the phone and speak to the journalists who matter. They’ll tell you what information they’re after, which saves you having to guess what interests them.

3. Forget Twitter. Yes, it’s a fun way to waste an hour, or even a day. But how often is it productive? Again, if you want to contact a journalist, call ‘em!

4. Don’t have lunch with contacts. I’m not saying you shouldn’t meet up with your clients and journalists, and occasionally it’s nice to spend time catching up over a delicious, and with luck, well-lubricated, lunch. But if you are pushed for time, arrange to have coffee. That’s two hours saved straight away.

5. Copy and paste. Some call it plagiarism, whatever … if someone has written something brilliant, use it! Why waste time trying to craft your own works of art when you’re no Charles Dickens?

6. Take credit for other people’s work. If you keep pointing out to your boss that it is actually the juniors who have put in all the hard work, your boss will wonder why he’s employing you.

7. Cancel that meeting. Do some work instead.

8.  Relax. It sounds counter-intuitive, but I find that if I take a proper break, and go somewhere where I can switch off and not think about work, I come back to my desk refreshed, revitalized and in the perfect mood for doing something useful. Online shopping for example.


Share this article

    Yes. This industry is full of workshy fops. Thankfully the hard-working, media-loving, intelligent ones far outnumber the pleasure cruisers. But the way PR is changing will ultimately see the lazy types ousted.

    Name: Steve Earl
    Date: 28 Feb 2012 01:10 PM

    It really is one of the biggest problems of working in PR. We spend so much time trying to convince everyone of our value that we don't always consider the best way of doing things. Everyone will agree with you in a meeting if you talk about working smarter, not harder, but when it comes to putting that into action you will always get people who insist on adding 12 actions to a to do list for a campaign just to make themselves feel relevant. I often find that these are the people who aren't actually all that good but will impress by being in the office at 9pm. An old boss of mine used to put a stop to this sort of behaviour by accusing people of needing to learn to type faster.

    Name: Matt

    Date: 29 Feb 2012 09:10 AM

    A boss of mine, who hated presenteeism with a passion, used to say that people who spend 12 hours a day in the office were either completely incompetent or too stupid to write a business case for an extra member of staff.

    Name: Jane

    Date: 29 Feb 2012 01:37 PM

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