Tuesday, December 13, 2011

The Final Round... Personal PR #6

Over the past 16 weeks, I have turned into a complete believer of the power of social media. I see it as a great way to connect with friends, customers, future employees, companies and a wonderful way to market. I can honestly say times are excelling with social media, but the only way to be a part of this progression is fully utilize the tools.
Below is once more, my version of a Mashable post titled, "4 Tips for Optimizing Your Resume with Social Media," about the power of social media and more specifically to enhance resumes and job hunting.

1. Link to Social

Approximately 10.9% of resumes includes some type of social media link. This percentage amount is not set as the number of social media sites are continuing to grow and make an impact on the hiring process. Tip: Include URLs to Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and any other highly used social media sites. This addition to your resume allows for less hunting for the potential employer.

2. Fact-Check Yourself

Keep updating your LinkedIn, resume and any other professional sources. As a professional or one in the midst, it is a good idea to be constantly trying to improve yourself and add to your experience. When you do something that is worthy of any of the above mention networks and sources, add it! It can't hurt to show off more wonderful things you have done or accomplished.

3. Don’t Just Copy/Paste

Your resume is full of content that also works great for your social media profiles. Feel free to use information from your resume for social network sections like “work experience,” “about me,” etc.
Select a couple of the best lines or experiences to share, not just a copy and paste. If you share everything online, why would they need to call you in for more information?

4. Use Keywords for SEO

Research the job you're applying for. Check for words or characteristics that most commonly appear in this search and utilize them. Keywords can be so helpful with SEO and could score you an interview or job opportunity if you match enough of the qualifications needed. *Side note: Do not falsify the information in order to get the words into your resume, LinkedIn or other professional networking sites. The last thing you want to happen is to be caught in a lie!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Its beginning to look a lot like Christmas...

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas break that is! I am so thankful to only have papers and projects for finals. I can't be more excited to be home and with my family. I know that for most finals week has already been the biggest drag of the semester and I'm sure next semester I will be right beside them in that boat.

Since my ONU life has dwindled due to everyone studying and me working on papers and projects, I thought I would share with you some fun Christmas crafts and facts. As a mid-point in my procrastination to not work on my assignments, I found a couple sites and blogs that caught my interest and I would like to pass them along to you!

From Inviting Smiles, 15 fun facts about Christmas!  
  1. Christmas is a blending of the words “Christ” and “Mass”
  2. X-mas comes from the Greek X which means Christ
  3. The first Christmas card was created in 1843 England
  4. Electric Christmas tree lights were first used in 1895
  5. Coca Cola was the first soda company to use Santa in advertising
  6. Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer was created in 1939 by and for Montgomery Wards
  7. Of all holiday shows, “It’s a Wonderful Life” is the most shown on television
  8. Santa Clause first shows up in Turkey in the 4th century
  9. One of the most popular Christmas songs, “Jingle Bells” was actually written for Thanksgiving
  10. Christmas didn’t become a US national holiday until after the Civil War
  11. Mistletoe was used long before the birth of Christ. It was believed to be magical and used by the Druids as part of their winter celebration
  12. The needles of Christmas trees (pines, firs and spruces) are an excellent source of vitamin C.
  13. The most popular Christmas ballet is “The Nutcracker”
  14. The White House was first decorated for Christmas when Franklin Pierce was President of the United States
  15. Holly was originally brought into homes during the winter to drive ghosts and demons away during the long dark winters of Northern Europe.

Now that the semester is coming to a close and there is a really long break ahead of us students, here are my three favorite blogs which share simple Christmas craft ideas.
- It's a Creative World:
- Deck The Halls Of Home with Jolly: 
- See Jane Blog:

I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season and an even better New Years!

Happy studying and/or crafting!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Tis the season..

...to start internship hunting. Thankfully, with my new online resume I am able to amplify my oppotunities to come in contact with the perfect internship! This online resume allows me to share my social networking sites, leadership, education and experience all at the click of the mouse. Need a new way to interact with potential employees or internship advisors? This can open up opprtunities to share what you have to offer!
Check out weebly to start making your online resume today!

We have learned all semester and in all books how to properly market and measure with social media. In "Groundswell," "Measure What Matters," and "Real-Time Marketing and PR" have all shared that fully utilizing Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, other professional networks, tags, keywords, etc. can't hurt and often lead to a greater possibility of getting an interview or job offer.

For more information on measuring social media, how to measure customers and employees and what social media can do for you, check out the above mentioned books!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Can You Digg it?

Technology is always advancing. To keep up with just about anything, especially technology, one must work in real-time. Below are some tips from The Groundswell part one.

1. Technology changes rapidly.
The worst thing to do is constantly worry about keeping up with the times. Even though your company or organization needs to change with the times to stay in the game, the focus should be on the relationships made while on these technologically advanced sites.

2. Utilize blogs, videos and podcasts.
Why, you may wonder...they are cheap and easy. They encourage interaction and comments which leads to better feed back from customers for the future of your group. Best thing to do when a member comments: comment back. It can stop a crisis in the making by a simple, "we are working on the issue, thanks for the suggestion," will suffice.

3. Tags/ Hashtags.
The end of the line, use them .

4.Evaluate the new technology.
It is nice to make sure your group has the most cutting edge technology, but if it doesn't give you what you were hoping or looking for, why still use it? Find something that suits your company or organization. Also, check out all technology. This allows your organization to be accessible and easier to find credibility in the consumers' eyes.

Now it is your turn! Go out there and take advantage of the new technologies and maintain your relationships with your customer. Use these new technologies to make sure the public is happy and use it as an evaluation stage.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Do I really enjoy this? Personal PR #5

I have come to realize I can actually enjoy the research I am conducting. For my Advanced PR Writing class I have been doing research on comprehensive education versus abstinence only education in public schools and I love this research.

The reasons I am so excited about this project is because: A. I enjoy the controversial topic, B. I plan to work in a school district or at a university and sex education is a hot topic at least within the school districts, and C. I can have an opinion and then have strong facts to back up those thoughts. Now, I know all research is like this, but I have been doing other research this semester and it just seems boring in comparison. To be honest, the other research has been difficult for me to stay on top of because of its lack of excitement and my growing lack of interest.

Thankfully, with the topic of sex education in schools, I have been able to find articles ranging from highly opinionated to just the facts to research projects on both ends of the sex education spectrum. I don't believe that my excitement for the research comes from the topic alone, but the fact that it is controversial. The more controversial the topic the more I seem to be interested in it, therefore, the more work I put into the project.

Helpful tip time! 
Research doesn't seem like it would be something to get pumped about, but if you are able to find a genre or topic you are passionate about the research won't be enough to satisfy your knowledge need. To find what you might be interested in researching think of the topics you question a lot; does it have to deal with your careers current job market, your favorite sport or a value and moral belied? When you can figure out what thought provokes you most, you will more than likely find your topic for research. Who knows, this may lead to (for college students) a capstone project, undergraduate research and if you are highly involved maybe even a career in the field of research you are studying.

Happy researching!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Now or never?

Even though I am beyond excited to go forth to graduate school and get a grown-up job, I still want my time to last here at ONU. I want this last year and a half to go slower so I have more time to experience more things and have more chances to take advantage of these opportunities.

I am going to need some feed back on this one... I am considering applying for a Resident Assistant (RA) position. Since I want to work in a student involvement office at a university, I figured having some experience in ResLife would be a good foundation.

The thought of being an RA snowballed into me trying to become more active in a couple more organizations. So, since most of the election processes for the organizations I am in are currently taking place, I have decided why let my last year go by with free time?

By the end of the elections/ appointing is done I hope to have a position in every organization I am involved in. I am beyond excited for these new experiences and to work with an array of fellow students.

I think I'm crazy, but I cannot wait to be busy again!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

I'm reading your mind.

Measuring what employees think would be so much easier if we had the super power to read minds. It is impossible to please everyone and knowing this can help in making the most important improvements. In consistent nature, I am going to talk about the seven steps to how to measure what employees think and how to take action to improve relations. This is taken from the wonderful Katie Paine's book "measure what matters."

1. Understand the environment and where they really get information.
Know your employees, their dynamics and their duties. Understanding them and their environment, it'll be easier to relate and to fix any problems.

2. Agree on clear, measurable goals.
Don't be over estimate your abilities, but do as much as you can handle to better your organization

3.Select a benchmark to compare to.
See what other companies are doing for their employees. Look at the companies who are on the same level as yours.

4. Define criteria for success.
Make sure all goals are going to make your organization and employees successful.

5. Select you measurement tools and collect data.
Get tools to measure, communicate efforts and prepare for analyzation of the results. 

6. Analyze and take action.
Look over data thoroughly and make a plan of action to fully cover results to the best of your company's abilities

7. Make changes to improve.
Implement your plan because employees are expecting change to happen.

These steps are self-explanatory and easy to understand and follow. Overall, "measure what matters," was a very helpful book that took measuring to a new and easier to obtain level. Have some time? Read away!

Personal PR #4

GPA is everything... or is it? In a post titled "Students: The 9 things that matter more than GPA" on PR Daily by Becky Johns, the topic of GPA importance is discussed. Like normal I am a fan of numbered lists and just lists in general. This list has intrigued me at the moment because it makes me feel better about getting some "C"'s. Even though your GPA is important because you want to show off how hard you worked at your studies, but does GPA matter in the professional world?  

The overwhelming opinion was that college GPA matters very little in professional success. 
Grades are the determining factor for performance in school. But in the professional world, that’s not how it works. Your bosses won’t tell you which questions will be on the test.

Your college GPA is a combination of multiple factors, but really is not the only or best indicator of your work ethic. Personally, I know really intelligent people who struggle with people interactions and on the other end I know those who struggle with school and make outstanding progressions because of their social abilities. Book smarts and street smarts are very different things and it takes both aspects to make a well-rounded employee.

Instead of always being concerned with your GPA try taking classes seriously, attending and engaging during them, talk to professors and learn something.

Here’s what does matter in the professional setting:

Knowing how you learn
Do you need to: hear it, see it, write it, or practice it? Find which way helps you retain the information and stick with it!

Applying theory to real-life situations
Take the classroom learned theories and apply them to situations you will actually come across in your profession. Knowing how to do something from a textbook is completely different from real-life practice.

Time management
Everyone seems to boast about how they possess time management, but to actually hold-up that claim is another story. Time management is a vital skill. In your professional life, you’ll need to know how to manage your time to meet deadlines. There is no getting around this one!

Relevant professional experience
Take advantage of any professional experience while in college. This can include jobs, internships, student organizations and volunteer projects in your field that will prepare you for the work world.

The ability to give and receive feedback
If you can dish it out, then take it. Learning to accept praise and criticism is so important. There will be employee reviews, so the ability to hear different types of feedback and fixing the issue accordingly will matter most. On the other end, it is good be able to give feedback. Learning how to deliver this negative news is a great trait to have in the professional world.

Presentation skills
Learn how to properly present and get comfortable with the idea of presenting. The ability to convey ideas clearly, speak confidently with your bosses, and discuss your experience in interviews will be an important part of your professional life.

Writing skills
I feel like this one is pretty obvious. Know how to: spell, use basic grammar, proofread and ask for more sets of eyes to look over your work. Like the old saying, practice makes perfect, it wouldn't hurt to continually be writing and improving your skills.

Your network
Basically, it's not what you know, but who you know. If you have made a good name for yourself or built a strong network of professionals, it is easier to get your foot in the door to a job or company you are interested in.

Any further thoughts on this GPA topic? What else matters more for students than GPA?

Monday, November 28, 2011

It's The Final Countdown

The last two weeks of  fall semester classes have begun, finally! I couldn't be more excited to be finished with classes; not that the classes I'm in are bad, it is more of I am not adjusted to this whole semester thing yet and 16 weeks is just too long. Regardless, I am so excited to start classes next semester and for once in my three years here, I'm taking a class just for fun.

In other news, graduate school searching is extremely terrifying and exciting all at once. Who knew I am old enough now to be almost a senior in college, looking for graduate programs and preparing for the grown-up world? To be honest, it is surreal how fast college has gone by and I wish it would slow down a little bit. It feels like two months ago I started my freshman year living on the third floor of Maglott to make new friends.

For the rest of this lovely blog, I figured I would discuss a few things I wish I would've known as a freshman.
1. The Lanyard: This one is self-explanatory for ONU students, but this is the freshman indicator. Words of advice for incoming freshman: do NOT wear the lanyard around your neck. Don't ask me why this is a big no-no, but it is.

2. Studying: When I came to college I had my ideas of the term "studying" and it didn't include any more than a two day in advance study period. Words of advice for everyone: for an exam or test start at least two weeks prior to the test. In actuality, it would be a good idea to just review the materials everyday why it is still fresh in your mind.  

3. CSC (Communication Skills Center): What a resource! During my first quarter I was forced to utilize this resource center and to be honest I wasn't pleased with having to make an appointment to go there. I didn't see why it was a requirement for the paper. Even after my first quarter I didn't really appreciate the CSC until Spring Quarter, During the spring, when I visited the CSC it showed my teacher I was taking the extra effort to benefit my work and my grade. This visit actually bumped my grade up a letter grade because of the suggestions they gave to me. Words of advice: Use the CSC for papers, speeches, etc. It helps you and how your viewed by your teachers.

Look forward to next week's discussion on the final three things I wish I would've known as a freshman.

Happy studying!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

If you don't have anything nice to say...

You still need to say it; at least in terms of company or product. In chapter five of "Measure What Matters" by Katie Paine, the new rules for PR and social media are discussed as to why even a negative comment is better than no comment at all and where the control lies for the progression of companies or products.

New Rule #1: You're Not in Control-- and Never Have Been.
Now that social media plays such a huge part in everyday life the public is in control even more. It is impossible to track and measure what billions of opinionated people on the web are saying. The attempt to do so will more than likely fail and you are left in a corner.

New Rule #2: There Is No Market for Your Message
The message you or your company puts out doesn't matter, nor does the audience. What matters most is what people do if and when they hear that message. Use your time to understand what draws your public's attention and different ways to get your message to stick.

New Rule #3: It's about Reaching the Right Eyeballs, Not All the Eyeballs
It is impossible to track how many people have actually seen your message and using "hits" is also considered "How Idiots Track Success." Like rule #2, it doesn't matter which eyeballs see it, but what they do with the information. It won't matter if 25 people viewed your company blog on the new product, but if one person takes that information and spreads it further, whether via word-of-mouth or social media, it can make all the difference in how the message is being received.

New Rule #4: It's Worse to Not Be Talked about at All
If customers are making decisions on purchase based on reviews and what others are saying, it is better to have a negative comment out there in social media land than nothing at all. This is so because there will more likely be someone who is in defense of your company and have a rebuttal. So forget the rule you were always taught, "if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all," because even the bad can be made into a good thing.

Rules are not always fun to follow, but in the end are the best things to do to in order to be in the running for success.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Over joyed!

This one is going to be short, sweet and to a meaningful point!

I LOVE the holiday season. It is by far my favorite time of the year. With Christmas tree decorating, family time, no school work (only good thing about semesters) and the cheerfulness of the season, I can't seem to get enough of it!
Things I am thankful for/ am excited about during the holiday season in descending order:

3. Decorations: The colors for both Thanksgiving and Christmas are wonderful. They are more than just colors, but a statement of the spirit of their respective holidays. From autumn leaves as a center piece, to the tinsel that my cat likes to tear down, the festive nature of the decorations really helps make the season exciting and allows for family time. Decorations can also include, but are not limited to: the Christmas Tree, wreaths, seasonal candles, ornaments, stockings, turkeys drawn by the shape of your hand, fun table covers and

2. Music/ Movies: I will admit to being that person who begins to listen to Christmas music a week or so prior to Thanksgiving Day. From Michael Buble's Christmas album to the classic "How the Grinch Stole Christmas," these things never get old. I am one for tradition and hearing the same classic holiday songs every year gives consistency to my life. The holiday music and movies remind me that even though I am growing up and my life is changing, the tradition is still there.

1. FAMILY TIME: I cannot express how thankful and appreciative I am of my family. Family time during the holidays is unlike any other. There is extra happiness and a time to reflect on what we have as a unit and how lucky we are to have one another. Another reason I enjoy family time is because it involves the others two things I enjoy about the holidays. Being together with the people I love and sharing other things I enjoy doing with them is something I get pumped about come this time of year.

I know I'm not alone in my excitement for the holidays; celebrate with your loved ones, cherish what you have, put your troubles to the side and be thankful in the cheerfulness of the season.

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone and a happy start to the best time of the year!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Personal PR #3

I can safely assume I am not alone in the statement, I am beyond done with this semester.

I genuinely have never been so bogged down with work, projects, homework and tests, and there are still two and a half weeks left of classes. The thing I am going to have to learn (along with others, I'm sure) is the real world will have those times when there just seems to be too much. The likelihood of getting your dream job out of college is slim, so there are going to rough jobs you just do not like doing or ones that may seem pointless. So, to stick with my pattern of tips and tricks to help with everyday problems, here are 10 ways to help you stay motivated. Adapted from an article by Laura Spencer titled "Ten Tips to Stay Motivated- Even When You Don't Feel Like Working."

1. Remind yourself of the reason that you are doing the work. Even though the paper due on Tuesday may not seem beneficial, think of everything in a broad scheme. You are paying to go to school, utilize everything that is being offered. 

2. Make sure that your work environment is comfortable. An uncomfortable work space can definitely lower your motivation level. Make sure you are comfortable with your surroundings, where you are sitting, etc. 

3. Change your work environment. There isn't a rule that says you have to work inside your room. By changing your scenery, it may help motivate your desire to work.

4. Schedule breaks. Make sure to schedule regular breaks for yourself. Tell yourself that you’re going to take fifteen minutes off after you complete amount of work. During your break, make sure you are leaving your work environment. You’ll find that each break renews your energy and creativity.

5. Plan a reward for yourself. Bribery can and does work when it comes to staying motivated. If a movie or hanging out with friends later is a motivator, then set a goal of x amount of work needs to be done before I can give myself y. 

6. Alternate projects. If you find yourself getting bogged down with a certain task, then you may went to switch to a different project for a while. This will allow time for you to rejuvenate your ideas for the project and not remain "stuck." 

7. Picture the work already completed. Even though some projects get overwhelming and the small parts leading the finished product may seem pointless there is always an end. Looking forward to the finally completed project will help alleviate any doubts that it will not get finished. Try to picture yourself getting compliments for the final work.

8. Have regular routine. If you develop the habit of working during a certain part of the day, every day, then you you’ll find it much easier to schedule your time and ensure that all projects are completed on time.

9. Take care of your health. The better you feel, the more work that you will be able to get done. Take care of you first, then you will be in a better state to take care of your work.

10. Develop a support group. It’s important to have close people to lean on in times of struggle. 

I am really starting to become obsessed with "steps to success." Hopefully, with the ONU semester coming to a close that these tips can be helpful and getting you through the final weeks of classes and potentially help with future employment as well! 

Happy studies!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Personal PR Round 2

Even though I am only a junior, I am already prepping for the real world and all that comes along with finally being a grown-up. I am currently focusing on interview prep because it seems that even the slightest mistake on a resume, cover letter or in an interview could cost me the job. In my blog titled "Personal PR" I discussed common mistakes on a resumes and cover letters, so I figured it would be appropriate to talk about interviewing tips. More specifically I plan to talk about body language. 

I enjoy steps or guidelines when taking advice on how something should be done; therefore, below are six things you should know about body language.

Here are "6 things you need to know about body language."  Taken from an article on PRDaily.com.

1. Most people overestimate their energy level. 

We’re lousy judges of how energetic we appear to others, and most people benefit from boosting their energy level 10 to 15 percent. You may think that you are an eight on a 10 point scale, but you can always give a little more. Seeing your entusiasm for an organization or a position the employer will be more willing to look over a small mistake and give you as a potential employee another look.

2. Stop thinking and look at me. 

When we speak, we maintain eye contact just 40 to 60 percent of the time. The lack of eye contact can signal nervousness or evasiveness. You can help maintain better eye contact if you pause briefly before answering a question, which will allow you to put together your thoughts and get an answer together before you begin speaking. 

3. Gesturing makes your words better. 

The physical act of gesturing helps them form clearer thoughts and speak in tighter sentences with more declarative language. Gesture as naturally as you typically would in everyday life. Your words will come to you more easily and the words you use will be stronger.

4. When you’re defensive, you remember less. 

If you see your audience exhibiting defensive body language, change tactics and don’t try to persuade them to your point-of-view until their body language opens up. The last thing you want to do is offend a potential employer, keeping strong opinions and controversial topics to yourself is probably the best idea.

5. Your feet point the way. 

Your feet subconsciously tell you where you want to go. In the middle of a conversation you wish you could exit, look at your feet. You might be surprised to find that they’re not both pointing directly at the person with whom you’re speaking. Be careful to not look like you are in a hurry or anxious during an interview. Before you go into the building take a breath in, calm down and make sure you have an appropriate amount of time freed for the interview.   

6. If you smile, they smile. 

We subconsciously imitate the things we see. When I look at someone and smile, they tend to smile; so, smile and be friendly. Remember the interview starts as soon as you walk into the building, so putting that smile on, greeting the secretary or office assistant can make all of the difference in overall interview quality.

The next time you go into an interview or speech situation, hopefully you can utilize these tips and tricks to amplify your presence positively in the either situation.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Levels of the Creep

"Measure what matters" has a lot great points pertaining to types of measurements, audiences and various other resourceful tips and tricks to the PR and marketing worlds. My favorite part of Katie Paine's book was the part of levels of engagement. Basically, it discusses the multiple types of audiences a company can have through social media.

Level 1: The Lurker
This is the person who only "likes" your company or organization on Facebook. Their "likes" may be from a contest or some other direct benefit from liking or following your company.

Level 2: The Casual
Casual engagements are those where they subscribe to your blog, follow on Twitter or suggest your page to a friend on Facebook. More involved with your organization and someone to focus on to draw in nearer.

Level 3: The Active
The people who fall into this category are those who actively participate in blogs, Facebook and other online sources. They re-tweet your company's information and genuinely care about how the company is progressing.

Level 4: The Committed
Committed people are those who have full faith in your company. They also will openly and actively participate on social media sites and encourage and positively influence others who are interested in your organization. You already have this group accounted for, but an occasion, "I'm glad we still have you around," is always a nice gesture and sure way to keep your committed audience around.

Level 5: The Loyalist
Loyalists might as well work for your company. They have a drive to improve the thought process of others in respects to your company, in most cases they are first responders to a concerned customer and are with the company through good and bad. The most difficult thing about loyalist is they are difficult to get an accurate measure on, as there are minimal ways to keep tabs on how this group is feeling.

Due to all of the levels of engagement, it is difficult to accurately measure social media success based solely on  Facebook "likes" or Twitter followers. Thankfully, there are other ways to measure your company's success such as analytics, surveys, and interaction rates between your "likers" and followers. For further suggestions, I recommend "Measure what matters," by Katie Paine.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Road Rage?

So driving into Lima I came across a ton of road construction. Like most, I am not a fan of road construction, but I do know how to drive through it. This is where the problem rests... I cannot stand people who don't know how to drive both through road work and in general. Common things like turn signals, taking turns at stop signs and various other things where I know I am not alone in my annoyances. In my discussion today I am going to talk about nine types of drivers who I have come to strongly dislike. Pictures and driver types are courtesy of cracked.com, article "9 Bad Drivers Nobody Complains About."

These are ranked in no particular order of annoyance.
1. People who are terrified of concrete barriers.
This may be an obvious one, but if you do not like the barriers in between you and the on-coming traffic please stay in the middle or right lane.

2. People who think bikes are a mile wide
I can't be that upset with this type of driver because there are a lot of "what ifs" with bike riders. Nonetheless, if you see a bike rider slow down, signal over, go around and then get back into your lane. This is not a difficult concept.

3. People who time things just right to make you miss the light.
You have somewhere you want to be? I do too! Be courteous of  others. Maintain your speed and if they get stopped by the light it is no longer your fault. 

4. People who pass you for no actual advantage.


5. People who ignore the who goes first rule.

The going and stopping of this not-so-fun car tag is not good for your mileage. This also is something that could've been resolved if they would've gone if they were at the stop sign first or vise versa. There is a time for chivalry; save it for your date night.

6. Slow Drivers in Denial.

I am a hypocrite and am completely guilty of this. Whether it is because I was singing too loud to my music or just not maintaining a constant speed and then I notice I'm being passed, speed up and pass whoever just passed me. Childish? Yes.

7. People who let everybody in.

This is probably my biggest driving pet peeve. If I am in the moving lane, I do not want to be stopped for 15 extra minutes so you can be nice and let the two side lanes into the main one. Letting a couple cars in and then moving forward is how it works. Don't give graciously of what is everyone else's; time is always precious.

I hope you found some of these humorous and relatable. For more articles like this and another way to procrastinate, I suggest Cracked.com!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Welp, that's annoying.

No one likes the adjective "annoying" to be tossed into the mix when they're being discussed. I see social media sites as a big factor into a company’s and organization’s success or failure. Companies or organizations are often the worst offenders in the social media spam and wrong doings. Thankfully, PR Daily has given us "12 annoying social media practices" by Robert M. Caruso to help guide our social media ways personally and as a PR practitioner. Like normal, I have picked my top 5 "annoyances" and added some of my own opinions in with Mr. Caruso’s.

They are listed in no particular order of annoyance.

1. Random Facebook event invites

Do I know you? Do you know me? Does this event apply to me? If your answer is no to any of those question, then it might be a good idea to reconsider your event invitation requests.

The Facebook event application can be powerful and effective when used properly. Mass-inviting non-targeted prospects that you have built no relationship with to your event is more than annoying; this kind of direct marketing in a social environment usually kills brand and, worse, gets you un-friended.

2. Random share requests

Just because is social media is through the Internet doesn't mean they don't have to be legitimate relationships. Before you start asking a Facebook friend or Twitter follower to share a post for you, be sure you have developed a relationship. Would you ask someone you met in line at Starbucks to email all of their friends your new blog post or website when you just met them? Would you call people you met once and never talked to again, asking them to put a sign for your business in their company lobby?

Of course you wouldn’t! You must first build a relationship, get to know them and provide value to them first. So, don’t do it in social media, either.

3. TeamFollowBack
Why would anyone doing social media marketing want followers to follow them just because? Followers and fans should be made up of a highly targeted community that you can provide value to and are most likely your prospective customers.

Quantity and quality are equally important.

4. Ignoring shares/RTs

If someone shares a post of yours or retweets (a.k.a. RTs) something you posted on Twitter, thank them. By replying, you can build a relationship. When they shared your post to all of their friends, fans, or followers, they are saying to you, “What you posted was valuable and relevant.” Ignoring their gracious and free publicity of you and/or your brand is like ignoring someone at a networking event that hands your business card to someone right in front of you.

5. Too late

Social media is digital. It happens at lightning speed. Don’t take days to respond to a comment or conversation attempt by a fan or follower. Make a commitment to your social media marketing and respond quickly.

Hopefully, we all can learn a little bit of social media etiquette as a PR Practitioner and utilize it in both our professional careers and personal lives.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Quantity and Quality

Quantity and quality don't always go hand in hand, even though obtaining both is a wonderful thing. In Katie Delahaye Paine's, "Measure What Matters" there are steps to try to get a perfect (or close to perfect) measurement program.

Step #1: Define goals and objectives
Includes: setting desired outcomes, deadlines and budgets.

Step #2: Define environment, audience and role in influencing them
Includes: Examining all audiences in all walks of life and how they could benefit or threaten the organization

Step #3: Define your investment
Includes: Cost of personnel, building use, paper, etc.

Step #4: Determine your benchmark.
Includes: Comparison with other companies within stretch goals (aspire to be), peer companies (at the same level) and underdogs (below us in standings).

Step #5: Define your key performance indicators (KPIs)
Includes: Different measurement tools for each objective. Also, how much brand or message is known and how it is seen and where the brand is placed (awareness and visibility)

Step #6: Select the right measurement tools and vendors
Includes: Content analysis, primary research, web analytics and other forms of data collecting.

Step #7: Turn data into action
Includes: Taking the data collected and making a plan of action to properly use the data to benefit the company.

Even though this will take time and money, in the end there will be many ways to improve the company brand, image, sales or the overall company. Hopefully, after utilizing these steps will allow for a better situational analysis, better understanding of what there is to work with and how to go about taking advantage of all opportunities within the industry.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Grown-up Time

When I came to college, I was beyond excited to be an adult and move forward with my life. I was also under the impression that getting out high school meant putting petty drama behind us, seeing there is more being offered to us and fully taking advantage of those opportunities. This is a time to become an adult and put childish ways to the side.

In my two and a half years in college I've noticed a lot of students are still stuck in high school mode. This mode is where: not getting a position is the end of the world, what someone said the night before ruins your entire next day and grudge holding and "shit talking" become a hobby. I don't know about all of you, but I am beyond ready  to be done with all of drama and nonsense. 

Don't get me wrong, I am not innocent in this situation. The new level of negativity is really starting to put a damper on not only me, but anyone who is surrounded by those constantly unsatisfied and negative people. Since the weather hasn't been the best and to hopefully lift some spirits here are some steps from Happiness Strategies to becoming a happier person by Tom Valeo:

Happiness Strategy # 1: Don’t Worry, Choose Happy
First, make a decision to be happy. One's thought process can make all of the difference. Things that have already occurred can no longer be changed. Learn from them, build and move on.
Happiness Strategy #2: Cultivate Gratitude
Be thankful for everything you have: people, family, friends, running water, clothes, etc. It can dispel bitterness and despair.
Happiness Strategy #3: Foster Forgiveness
Grudges can affect physical and mental health, and is very stressful. Forgive others and know that you too also have things which you would like forgiven.
Happiness Strategy #4: Counteract Negative Thoughts and Feelings
Whether it is with meditation, rhythmic breathing, yoga, or relaxation techniques take time to step back from the situation and think it through. Saying and doing things spurring from emotion usually doesn't result in anything except more tension and an increase in harsh feelings.
Happiness Strategy #5: Remember, Money Can’t Buy Happiness
Trying to fill an unhappy heart and soul with buying things like clothes or food will NOT solve the problem. Work through it, put it to the side and move forward with your life.
Happiness Strategy #6: Foster Friendship
Make some new friends (not necessarily replacing the old), explore pen pal options and surround yourself with positive people. Their happy nature will affect how you view situations and life.
Happiness Strategy #7: Engage in Meaningful Activities
Do more of what means the most to you. Crafting, sports, blogging, etc. If you love it spend some extra time doing it! 
Enjoy these tips and have a joy filled week
"No one is in control of your happiness but you; therefore, you have the power to change anything about yourself or your life that you want to change."
- Barbara de Angelis

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Content is KING!

Who doesn't love having royalty on their side? There are many dos and don'ts of writing a solid messaged article or piece. One of the main don't of writing is unorganized and wordy messages. If you want to be the most effective and efficient with time and space allotted, content is king.

We learned from both from a class reading and Shane Haggerty content is king in almost any writing situation. To keep your audiences attention it must have keywords that stick out to potential consumers, grab their attention and keep it there for at least the significant information in the piece. Keywords are those that are a main theme of the article or message. These words are also how the piece gets found through search engines. The more keywords in the piece, the higher up the article will be in the search results.

The best thing to do is avoid using too many and unnecessary words. This clutter can put a damper on the message of the writing and can also make the reader lose interest in the whole idea of the reading or makes them stop reading completely. Also, going back through the piece, looking at the individual sentences, making sure every word is necessary, rewording, shortening and getting the message across in the cleanest way.

Overall, taking the time to make a solid content and consistent message can be more beneficial then having fluff even with meaning. Take your time and make every word count so confusion doesn't happen and the correct information is put out to the publics.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Personal PR

The resume is one of the most referenced and utilized items during networking and job searching. It is a nice recap of accomplishments, skills, education and previous experience so that potential employers have something to reference. The last thing anyone wants is to have is a grammatical error, misspelling or a formatting inconsistency that stands in the way of getting a job or an interview. So from PR Daily, I found an extremely helpful article on 12 dangerous resume mistakes.

1. Goofy or inappropriate email address 
This one is really self-explanatory. Leave behind the email address you made when you were ten years old and move on to a more professional one. If the email address is not professional then there is a potential the employer will not take you seriously as a job candidate.

2. Including an objective statement 
Applying to a job is more about the company seeing what you can do for them and what you have to offer not knowing what you want. 

3. Not “theming” your document with keywords 
Don't use words over and over again. Keywords are a huge deal in resumes! A common first stage to interviews is a computer scan for job keywords and if the resume doesn't have them then it is the end of the road for the job possibility.

4. Forgetting skill sets 
Skills sets are extremely important especially with keywords added! As you can see, keywords are becoming a trend.

5. Placing awards and top achievements at the end of the document 
Keep awards and achievements in a separate section and not with the job(s) and the description(s). 

6. Lumping multiple jobs at one employer into one position 
If there have been multiple positions with the same employer make them distinct and separate from one another as they were able to give different experiences and skill enhancers.

7. Stretching your employment dates 

If you started on 11/2007 and left in 2/2008, that does not mean you can put “2007 - 2008” on your résumé. That’s called lying. Never lie. Always include the month and date because the possible employer will find out one way of another. 

8. Upgrading your job title 
Make sure the job titles are the most recent and properly reflect the job duties. 

9. Including employer address, phone, supervisor name, and email 
How eager are you to “prove” that you’re legit? Employers have this thing called the Internet to research your previous companies. Don’t look insecure by listing everything. This actually calls the wrong kind of attention to your employment history. 

10. Listing your job duties 
Listing the job duties isn't enough. Every job has them, but what employers want to see is what you did to see through the duties; giving the resume value and substance.

11. Getting employers to “assume” things about education 
Either you got the degree, are in the process, or took program coursework..Don't let them think you completed the degree when you actually only took a few courses on the subject matter. This is also constituted as stretching the truth and lying/

12. Not keeping up to date 
Careers are constantly changing and making improvements to positions to keep up with the times. If a resume has experiences from 1999 it may not be as relevant since it is out dated and may no longer apply to what the job entails. Also, companies are always looking for subject matter experts and constantly looking for employees to go to development classes, workshops and conferences related to professional growth and experience.   

These are common mistakes made by everyone. This is why having workshops and practice with writing resumes and cover letters is very important for future success. 

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Procrastination Methods: 101

College is a time to learn professional skills, build networks and find the ultimate procrastination methods. In my two and a half years at ONU, I have come to find there are in fact more reasons for me to not do my school work and the top contender are websites. These websites include: Damn You Auto Correct, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Dear Blank Please Blank, Texts From Last Night, Reddit and the list goes on! 

The amazing amount of free entertainment on the Internet is really ridiculous, but there are ways around it. In my search of some procrastination relief I found a blog from Positivity Blog entitled, "How to Stop Procratinating: 7 Timeless Tips." I found all of them to be  useful so why not share them with you all :)! 

1. Stop thinking. Start doing.
“To think too long about doing a thing often becomes its undoing.”
Eva Young
There is no such thing as a perfect plan, but that doesn't mean one can't have a basic idea of a priority list set in place to be more efficient. 
2. Don’t blow a task out of proportion.
“If you want to make an easy job seem mighty hard, just keep putting off doing it.”
Olin Miller
This quote explains it all. The longer you put off a task the harder it seems to do and the less willing one is to just sit down and get it done. The longer it stays on the to-do list the more it weighs on our minds. Get it done and check it off! 
3. Just take the first step.
“You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step.”
Martin Luther King, Jr.
When you start to look too far into the future any task or project can seem close to impossible. And so you shut down because you become overwhelmed and start surfing the internet aimlessly instead. That is one of the reasons why it is good to plan for the future but then to shift your focus back to today and the present moment.
Looking at all of your tasks may seem overwhelming. This is why the best is to just focus on one thing at a time ranging from the most to the least important.
4. Start with the hardest task of your day.
“Do the hard jobs first. The easy jobs will take care of themselves.”
Dale Carnegie
If you start the day with the most difficult task and it gets completed when motivation is the highest the rest of the day's to-do list doesn't seem as heavy.
5. Just make a decision. Any decision.
“In a moment of decision, the best thing you can do is the right thing to do, the next best thing is the wrong thing, and the worst thing you can do is nothing.”
Theodore Roosevelt
Being indecisive is against human nature and it can wear on how we feel about ourselves and our already finished work. If a decision can be made as to where to start or what to start with, everything will fall into line and get completed. Getting started is key.
6. Face your fear.
“Procrastination is the fear of success. People procrastinate because they are afraid of the success that they know will result if they move ahead now. Because success is heavy, carries a responsibility with it, it is much easier to procrastinate and live on the “someday I’ll” philosophy.”Denis Waitley
Its normal for people to have a fear of failing and this fear can ultimately lead to putting off assignments until a later time. The sooner an assignment is began, the more information can be learned about it and the   better the finished product will be. 
7. Finish it
“Much of the stress that people feel doesn’t come from having too much to do. It comes from not finishing what they started.”David Allen
Completing a started project can alleviate a lot of stress and allows it be taken off the list for good. When you start something, finish it and feel better about accomplishing something in its entirety. 

Hopefully these tips helped you as much as they did for me! Enjoy and happy not procrastinating!