Pumping Up PR Skills

When it comes to making summer plans, students often feel torn between traveling and working a full-time internship. On one hand, you have the rest of your life to work. On the other, you need a resume that reflects job preparedness. Whichever path you decided this summer, you certainly improved on your skill set. Here are just a few of the ways travel made you a better public relations professional.

1. Adaptability

You could have an itinerary for the perfect trip; however, in a blink of an eye all can change.

You could miss your flight because you got off the bus at the wrong stop. The airline can lose your luggage. Your phone could die halfway through your hike. There is no shortage of travel mishaps. It’s important to remain patient and adapt to the situation. Learn to see the beauty in altered plans and your response will dramatically improve.

This skill is abundantly necessary when it comes to your clients. What happens when your client moves a due date up a week? Are you going to give up and say it’s not possible or are you going to jump at the opportunity to make a stellar impression by putting together an amazing solution? Hopefully, you will choose the latter.

2. Creativity

When you step away from your desk, do you feel that your creative ideas flow much faster? There’s a scientific reason for that! Creativity is related to neuroplasticity (how the brain is wired). These pathways are influenced by environment, meaning that new sounds, smells, language, taste, senses and sights spark different synapses in the brain — thus, revitalizing the mind.

When you travel to a new place, you can’t help but experience the use of your five senses. Learning from others about their culture and communication styles can inspire you to think outside the box. Share these ideas with your team!

3. Emotional intelligence

If there is any guarantee in travel, it’s that you will encounter stressful situations. What defines you is the way that you handle the stress. It’s important you remain self-aware and learn coping mechanisms that keep your emotions from hijacking your responses when you need a level head.

It’s clear that emotional intelligence is important for your wellbeing, but did you also know that emotional intelligence accounts for nearly 90 percent of what moves people up the ladder?

Emotional intelligence isn’t fixed like your I.Q., so you can always work on improving it.

4. And a great interview story to boot!

When future employers ask about a time when you faced a difficult situation, a time when communication was key or basically any other prompt — think back to your vacation and practice storytelling techniques. Storytelling is one of the most valuable skills in public relations — try to demonstrate your storytelling abilities during interviews.

What other ways does travel better prepare you for a career in communications? Let us know below.

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