Produced by the Blue Ridge Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America.
This has been a difficult year, no doubt. But I’ve also heard from many of you that it has been a year of unusual growth. Some found themselves called to the front lines of the pandemic, communicating rapidly changing plans and helping their organizations remain afloat. Some found this a time crucial for innovation. Some have explored new opportunities.
Who do you know that has done amazing things this year? We are keeping our nominations form open for three awards until the end of the month so you can honor your colleagues.
Nominate a colleague for the Shooting Star award – we’re looking for the individual who has contributed the most to the profession this year.
Nominate a colleague for the COVID Communicator Award – who in our chapter has shined this year in response to the pandemic?
Nominate a journalist for the Adam and Alison Award – we’re looking for the journalist that exemplifies excellence in fair and accurate reporting.
Regardless of the path you took this year, you’ve no doubt seen some amazing things. Honor those around you for the excellent work they do.
I tend to be an optimist, so I’m looking at 2020 as a year with multiple silver linings. I hope you are too.
One for the money: For several years, we’ve been trying to get Evan Nierman, founder of Red Banyan communications, to join us for a luncheon. COVID has cancelled the luncheons, but Evan has agreed to join us in December for a webinar on Crisis PR in the Age of Social Media and Social Unrest. Make sure you sign up for this virtual presentation on Thursday, December 10.
Two for the show: Take advantage of these events and webinars, some of which are free to PRSA members.
Nov. 19, Webinar, Liven Up Your PR Writing
Nov. 19, 3 p.m. EST: Twitter Chat, Communications Leadership: Leading During 2020
Dec. 8: Webinar, PR Measurement: How to Use Data to Engage Your Stakeholders
Dec. 9: Webinar, Adaptability in a Time of Chaos: How Flexible PR Pros Survive and Thrive in 2020. Hosted by the Health Academy for all members.
Dec. 10: Webinar, The Power of Storytelling in Leader Communication
Three to get ready: Here are some quick ideas to help you grow professionally.
Here’s an excellent article about effectively briefing executives from the Harvard Business Review.
For those of us trying to become more productive, here’s an interesting article exploring why our brains dwell on unfinished tasks.
Never underestimate the power of learning from others’ mistakes. Here are Crenshaw Communications’ PR Losers of 2019. Can’t wait to see 2020’s list for important lessons.
Four to go: Each month, learn more about one of our members. Please consider submitting your profile for an upcoming feature. Here’s how it works.
This month, we have a chance to get to know Allison Moore, Manager of Public Relations & Communications for the Institute for Advanced Learning and Research in Danville. Fun fact: Allison was my first mentor in PR. She and I worked together at John Lambert Associates waaaaayy back in 2000.
What was your best day as a communicator?
I don’t think there is any one day I would choose. I try to approach each new day as if it were my best. Some days are triumphant with successful events or campaign kick-offs, gaining top media coverage and exceeding awareness and reach goals. Some days are more mundane – full of tedious, less glamorous but necessary tasks still important to the cause. The part I enjoy most is knowing how versatile the field of PR and communications is and how each day is different and brings new opportunities and challenges.
How did you find PR?
I was writing for the Daily Tar Heel in college and found myself struggling with objectivity, especially when I personally supported a cause I was covering. I learned quickly that I had a passion for using my communication skills to help organizations and businesses achieve a goal by influencing or informing key audiences. I switched journalism concentrations, joined the PRSSA, started volunteering as a PR communicator with a Chapel Hill nonprofit, and the rest was history.
What would you like to be better at?
So many things, but mostly I would love to be able to sing. Sadly, I cannot carry a tune. I have many cousins with this talent, but it skipped me.
What is the most meaningful gift you’ve ever received? What did it mean to you?
My workplace is currently running our annual United Way giving campaign. One of the engagement activities is a “guess who” baby contest, requiring each employee to submit a baby photo for colleagues to guess. When I asked my mother for a photo, she handed me a whole box of pictures from my baby years through to my college years (and some even after that). The box also had mementos. She said she had been looking for the right moment to give it to me and wanted to do it when I really appreciated it. We spent about an hour looking through and reminiscing together, which was very touching. I still need to look through the rest of the contents but will treasure how she took the time to save all of those memories.