I am going do an English degree at Exeter University in September, and I was very unsure about what on earth to do with it. Doing a degree that isn’t vocational makes work experience twice as important when looking for a job afterwards.
I am a seasonal youth worker for the National Citizen Service with Catch22. Through this I’d been involved with marketing and public relations for social studies, and it looked very interesting. Maxim was recommended to me by one of the marketing directors as a good company to apply for work experience with. A few emails, CV edits and a nervous interview later, I had a week of work experience.
I’d never had work experience in an office environment before, and I was quite anxious. I didn’t know what to expect. But when I arrived on my first day, everyone was very friendly and welcoming. I began to feel at home, and was delighted to find everyone in the office had a sharp sense of humour. It was going to be an interesting week.
Whenever I produced something, the team were always honest but positive. They were genuinely interested in what I thought about things, and how I found each task.
Learning to write press releases showed me the importance of the way in which you present a message. As the PR agency, it is in your hands how you portray something to a journalist, and you need to make sure it represents the client in the best way possible. I was given press releases for a variety of different companies, which taught me a lot about researching thoroughly.
I was lucky enough to sit in on meetings with different clients. What I found the most interesting was how you almost get to be a part of other people’s businesses. You get to understand what’s important to them and help them move forward. I learnt about the importance of time and deadlines in PR, and the need to know your client well.
A mock interview with Phil pretending to be a client was a very valuable experience. I learnt how important it is to know all the facts, and how these facts need to be presented suitably for a journalist. This alongside proof reading and article shortening was an insight into what makes an article appealing, snappy and suitable for the publication it is written for.
Everybody was helpful, and patient and willing to give up time to help and teach me. Phil gave many hours to impart wise words of wisdom from his time in PR. I understand what works, and more importantly what absolutely not to do! I’ve been given an insight into the real world, and how PR works on different levels.
Maxim also works hard to keep Doritos in business. The importance of food and drink in an office is a life lesson that I will take with me into the big wide world.
The team at Maxim are friendly, experienced and realistic. I couldn’t have asked for a better agency to do my first ever PR experience with. I’m really happy with how much I accomplished in five days. This week has definitely made PR a career path I want to pursue.
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