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How to Turn Your Terrible Job into a Resume Booster

October 21, 2009

This morning, I read a great blog post by Jackie Adkins. He asks, “[Do] you never settle for an ‘okay’ job for a company that sells a product you could care less about, even if it means being unemployed for a potentially significant amount of time?” His question really got me thinking.

Today’s uncertain economy offers no promises, especially to young people looking for public relations jobs. A prestigious degree no longer equals employment. There are plenty of managers/executives who do not fully understand the value of a tight marketing and/or PR team, and will look there first when making staff cuts.

When I speak to a student  about getting started in public relations, I first ask her what her dream job would be. I get a wide variety of answers, but all have one thing in common… they usually take many years to get.

We should make the best of whatever situation we’re in. If you’re in a job that you know isn’t 100% the best fit, be PROACTIVE. If you’re sweeping floors at a local pet store, offer (for free) to do some PR for them. Plan an event and bring in new customers. Pitch a great story about one of your best customers to the local media. Turn your boring job into something you can add to your resume when you go in for your big interview at that high-powered PR firm. If you’re a coffee girl for an oil & gas business, find out where their marketing and PR teams are and pay them a visit. Ask if you can pick their brains. Become friends with the executives in those departments. Learn what they do on a daily basis. Who do you think they’re going to hire when it comes time to hire?

Bottom line: never accept that because you were turned down for your dream job that you should stop trying to make waves in the field you see yourself in. You’ll find that when you look at things from a new perspective, you discover opportunity. Build your resume now, so when your future boss asks you what past experience you have, you have more to say than “Sweeping floors.”

2 Comments leave one →
  1. October 21, 2009 7:36 pm

    I’m glad my guest post over at Lauren’s blog could inspire a post of your own! I definitely agree with you that no matter what role you find yourself in right now, make the best of it and soak up as many valuable experiences as you can from it. Sure, it’s easier to sit back and just complain about how lame your job is, but that’s neither helping you get a new job or helping you grow as a person. Great follow-up post!

    • October 22, 2009 2:40 pm

      Your comment makes me think of this quote: “”Life’s real failure is when you do not realize how close you were to success when you gave up.” If you expect perfection from every situation, you’re going to be pretty disappointed most of the time. You’re more likely to give up before you reach your full potential. Thanks the great post, and the comment. I’ll be back to your blog for sure.

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