PR- the fast paced, super-glam, champagne and VIP party filled career choice that every glossy haired college freshman dreams of…where editors love hearing from you, free clothes and loot are a daily perk, and Vogue photo shoots and back stage passes are a typical event…. CUT, TAKE 2!
Ok, so public relations is a pretty serious career choice, certainly, not exactly the sexy environment that Hollywood has us believe. Fast paced? Absolutely. But the champagne and VIP party are more likely to come the day we retire and until then, we are analyzing, researching, strategizing, pitching and then doing it all again, tirelessly, celebrating successes because they are just as elusive as they are sweet. Those of us who work in PR recognize each other within a moment- and the incredibly hard work it takes to keep our clients happy.
A new baby- the cozy, delicious bundle of joy in a little hat with the smallest toes and teeniest nose. Dreamy coos, delighting at butterflies, adorable slightly chocolate smeared face and long sleepy afternoons wrapped in a pristine white cashmere blanket while mommy sips tea and reads a nice book….CUT!
Motherhood is delightful, sure, but from day one of our gorgeous newborns’ lives we realize that as incredible and magical these creatures are, this is going to be a helluva lot of work. Every day. For the rest of eternity.
The good news for babies and children is that gals who work in PR make exceptional moms- and the good news for clients is that women with little ones make exceptional PR consultants, and here’s why: from the mouths of the PAN MOM community:
What has parenting taught me about PR? The importance of being flexible. Life with an infant is unpredictable. Circumstances change, priorities change, and – like PR – things don’t always go according to plan. Since becoming a mother, I’ve learned to switch directions faster, be more strategic, and have a backup plan (or two or three).
8 month old Emma’s mom, Kim Leadley, Senior Account Manager, technology, healthcare/life sciences
The big thing for me is that being a mom has really taught me patience in dealing with employees, peers and clients. Just as every child is different in terms of how they learn, process information, etc. – so is every adult. As a manager, I’ve learned to adjust my management style for each employee in terms of providing feedback as well as communicating with them overall. I also think I’ve become more nurturing with employees in terms of their growth and development (again, something that is intuitively part of being a mom).
13 year old Ella’s mom, Kristin Lamas Patterson, Vice President, consumer
The biggest thing I learned in PR and leverage in parenting is how to be an advocate and navigate the system on behalf of my kids, just like we would with clients or our team members. Both of my children have had unique situations that really needed me to get involved with their schools, the healthcare system or even other parents. Each situation has been different with difficult personalities involved. In many cases, I lean on the PR skillset I have to try to work methodically and plan accordingly so my children are represented fairly and get what they need to support them.
6 year old Ella’s and 2 year old Luca’s mom, Nicole Messier-Marino, Vice President, technology
What has parenting taught me about PR? Patience! With two high-energy boys, who seem to suffer from the “not listening” syndrome, I have learned to take a lot of deep breaths and be patient. I have used those skills a lot in PR, especially with the media. Reporters are busy and sometimes they don’t have the time immediately to review an email pitch or listen when we call with a great story idea. I’ve learned to be patient and give reporters time to consider my pitches. Since I make sure to target the most appropriate reporters with the best pitch, I can be confident that they’ll respond. Unlike my boys!
12 year old Sam’s and 9 year old William’s mom, Maribel Lopez, Senior Account Manager, technology
What I do in “both” my jobs? Juggle multiple projects well, and (usually) with a smile! In the office, I always have a number of client projects going on, all of equal importance. In any given day I’m event planning, pitching, scheduling media appointments, fielding calls and developing strategic plans. And, at home, well, the list is about the same, though at home swap out “pitching” for “convincing” my daughter to choose only 4 hair accessories to go with her multi colored tulle enhanced soccer uniform, and “media appointments” for play dates, dentist visits, and checkups. I never stop, and I wouldn’t have it any other way!
5 year old Pippa’s and 3 year old Mickey’s mom, Lisen Syp, Account Manager
While I am not a PR professional, I can totally relate to a very busy work day and trying to deliver quality work to all of your clients. My clients are PAN employees! Juggling many tasks and not getting too wedded to your daily to do list is part of the fun. With kids it is the same challenge. Juggling all of the Mom work and having plans change hourly and going with the flow helps keep things manageable. I am lucky that I thoroughly enjoy my professional AND being a Mom. I learn a ton from both of these experiences and feel very blessed.
14 year old Victoria and 20 year old Maddy's mom, Elizabeth Famiglietti, Senior Vice President, Human Resources
Happy Mother's Day from all of us here at PAN! Here's a slideshow of some our favorite motherly moments.