A new understanding of public relations through working with BRAC

Image

Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2013, I sat in my Mass Comm 4001 (PR Writing) class not knowing what to expect. I knew that I would gain necessary experience for the field that I plan to enter one day, but I didn’t know to how much experience I would gain. As I sat and listened to my professor recite the course objectives and syllabus, I became aware that this would be a service-learning course. Not only would I have the opportunity to gain experience writing documents that PR professional write, but I also would be given the opportunity to work with a client.

Image

The client that my class has been given the opportunity to work with is BRAC, a nonprofit whose mission is to propel the community of the Baton Rouge metropolitan area to a more prosperous economic future. If you are interested in learning more about BRAC, you may click this link here. Working with BRAC has helped shape my view of PR. Through this service-learning project, I have learned the importance of communication in PR. Communication skills are essential to a successful career in PR. Basically, if you are considering having a career in PR but you do not have good communication skills, then you should consider choosing another field. Here is a link to an article that discusses the importance of communication in the PR practice link.

Public relations professionals are in the middle of the communication cycle. The client communicates its message to us. We communicate that message to the target audience through the most effective medium to reach that audience. The audience receives and reacts to the message. Then we evaluate how effectively we delivered the message, and we figure out if the message or medium needs to be altered. Working with BRAC, has allowed me to see the importance of this cycle. So far in this project, we have focused on communicating with BRAC so that we can effectively communicate with their target audience(s). We want the message that we deliver to align with BRAC’s message.

This service-learning project has also shown me the importance of building mutually beneficial relationships with clients. This relates to my previous post about stewardship. If you would like to read the post, click this link here.  I have realized that Spotlight BR, my group’s PR agency, and BRAC cannot have a successful partnership if we aren’t “on the same page” with one another. For each of us to achieve our goals, we need to have a relationship that functions well. The partnership of Spotlight BR and BRAC has definitely accomplished that.

As this service-learning project progresses, I am learning more about PR and what it takes to work in this field. If you want to learn more about my service-learning experiences, continue to follow my blog https://ramonhardy13.wordpress.com/. You can also follow me on Twitter @_Ramon_H for more updates.

Advertisements

3 thoughts on “A new understanding of public relations through working with BRAC

  1. Ramon,

    I was also unaware of the real life experience in store for us when we first entered this PR writing class. I had always heard of service-learning but now that I have taken a service-learning class I have a whole new appreciation for not only public relations, but also the Baton Rouge community. Through working with BRAC I have learned the importance of relationships in the public relations profession.

    I also believe that it has been great to not only learn how to write like a PR professional but to communicate like one. Before taking this class I used to be timid when it came to writing but now that I look at it as communicating, it makes it easier and it makes me love the public relations profession more than I ever have.

    Nowadays I think of this class as a communication class more so than a writing class. We have been taught the basic writing skills and now we are set to interact to our best ability with our client, BRAC.

    My agency, Bengal Communications, has been hard at work preparing ideas for a SCVNGR trek with BRAC. Our goal is to get people to travel outside the main Baton Rouge area to more undiscovered Parishes of Baton Rouge.

    If you would like to see what Bengal Communications is doing with BRAC follow us on twitter: https://twitter.com/bengalbr

    Best,

    Caroline

  2. Ramon,

    I really enjoyed your post. I was in a similar predicament on my first day of MC 4001. Not only did I not know what to expect, but I felt nervous about the idea of being in a service-learning course. However, like you, service-learning given me knowledge and experience that I could have never learned in a purely traditional classroom.

    As stated in the post, good communication skills are a necessity in PR. More immediately, it’s a necessity in our service-learning course. If a person didn’t know how to communicate effectively before MC 4001, then they’ve definitely got a lot of practice by now. We’ve had ample opportunities to develop our skills.

    I also like that you stressed the importance of mutually beneficial relationships in PR. When partnering with a client, it is important that you have the same values, plans and expected outcome on a project. Without those similarities, a partnership can’t function effectively. Our current partnership with BRAC has reiterated this truth.

    I am excited to learned more about the PR profession as I delve deeper into our service-learning project so far. If you would like to learn more about what Bengal Communications is doing with BRAC, follow my blog http://davidsahr.wordpress.com/ on Twitter at @DavidSahr.

  3. Pingback: The journey is almost complete: What I’ve learned from my service-learning project with BRAC | The Voice of a Public Relations Student

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s