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A few more new year resolutions!

We all make new year resolutions, whether we keep them is another matter! Now you have packed away the decorations and the January blues are beginning to kick in, why not make a few resolutions about your 2018 PR career? Here are some thoughts:

Get to grips with evaluation
In 2018 you should find good evaluation that demonstrates value, but which measures effectiveness without mentioning money. It continues to be the biggest PR challenge. Whether it’s through use of behaviour change and perception audits, or through finding a link from PR to business figures, the person who cracks this will make their PR millions. Make 2018 the year in which you get ahead of the evaluation game.

Improve your social media
We all use social media in our personal lives now. However, I am amazed again and again when I interview people who have no concept of how to translate their social skills into a business context. Social media is so easy to follow, learn from and emulate. You need only track some brands who are doing it right, then think about how you can adapt their approach to your own PR needs. Your resolution should be more than just “know how to use social media”, but should be “know how to use social media for good, commercial effect”.

Do more training
Even a cynical old MD like me can benefit from training. It doesn’t just bring new skills, it also provides a chance to step back from the day to day and reassess your professional life. January is a good time to look at what training courses are out there and then ask to go on them. And remember that not all training has to be booked and paid-for – there is a lot you can learn on the job. So resolve to identify your skills gaps and then commit to filling them.

Learn the benefits of teamworking
Doing good PR is not always enough. Working well as a team is always going to make anything you do significantly more effective. Being in an effective team is valuable as it lets you learn from others, share the pain and share the success. Your teamworking resolution should be to identify the strengths of your colleagues and celebrate how much you can learn from and enjoy working with them. If you’ve made the training resolution, it may be that you can do some on-the-job training swaps and learn from each other?

Embrace change
Our industry has been changing faster than ever in the last few years. None of us is now doing the job we were and your resolution should be to embrace and capitalise on that change. Think more visually: take time to work out how your news release can be supported with video and online material and ensure your approach is right for your target audience. As with your social media resolution, you need to ensure you are at the forefront of change.

Pick up the phone
It is so easy to sit at your desk all day, bashing out emails and never really speaking to anyone. If you make one resolution in 2018 that will help you do your job better, make it to pick up the phone and actually speak to people! There is a clarity in conversation that simply gets missed through email and social media. Strong relationships are created through interaction, so don’t be afraid just to talk to people.

Good luck in your 2018 PR career!

Article written by Angela Casey, managing director of PR agency Pagoda Porter Novelli

If you want to read some more suggestions for resolutions, other PR chiefs suggest ten here.

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