By Anne Merrick, Tuesday, May 22, 2012, at 4:20 pm.
In about two hours, I will be wrapping up my first full workweek as an intern at Euro RSCG Worldwide PR. The exhaustion of being up at 5 a.m. every day that had been wearing on me all week is, minute by minute, being replaced by growing elation and excitement at the prospect of sleeping in tomorrow. But while the mornings have been tiring and the nighttimes short, because of a newly instated 10 p.m. bedtime, my first week at @erwwpr has been unlike any other at a new job.
Upon meeting my fellow interns, and newest friends, on Monday morning, I knew it was going to be a fast-paced summer surrounded by talented people. Within about an hour of introductions, we all dispersed with assignments in hand. That very morning, I learned my first lesson in PR: Don’t be afraid. This might seem silly and obvious, but it became immediately clear that I couldn’t hesitate to ask questions or make my own judgments, or even get something wrong. Fear is the ultimate inhibitor, and to be successful at anything, especially PR, you have to learn to let it go.
Additionally, the pace at @erwwpr immediately caught up with me. But I am learning to adapt to it as a motivator, not a series of unending deadlines. Our work is challenging in its quantity and interesting. Adopting an aggressive, always-say-yes attitude is the best way to immerse yourself, use your strengths, and improve your weaknesses.
This opportunity and experience will certainly be a valuable addition to my professional portfolio. But what I think is an even more valuable component is the chance to work in a predominantly female office. Coming from a political background, I have always been seriously outnumbered by men, and I’m hypersensitive to the 16 percent female leadership rate in this country. Working at @erwwpr Pittsburgh provides countless examples of smart, intuitive, well-balanced women who not only know how to lead in an office but also cooperate and work efficiently. As ambitious and malleable interns, I don’t think there could be anything more inspiring to be exposed to.
Although I’m struggling even now to have time to finish this blog post, and I’m on my third coffee of the day, I can honestly say I have never been more excited for an opportunity. The work is constantly changing, our co-workers are talented and while it’s clear (painfully, at times) that I have a lot to learn, I am genuinely thrilled for the challenge.
The One Young House posts on our blog document the experiences of four students participating in a unique and immersive internship with @erwwpr in Pittsburgh. Our main project is promoting the One Young World summit, a pro bono initiative of @erwwpr and Havas that’s coming to Pittsburgh in October. We will be sharing our experiences with traditional and social media relations, grassroots events and community presentations while living together as a team, operating out of One Young House.
[photo: Cassie Lenski]