On November 30, 2015, PRSSA-UD welcomed John Orr to talk about his journey in the PR field, to give insight on what work is like for him, and to give important tips on what’s needed to be a successful professional.
He started off by asking, “What is the definition of PR?” After receiving a range of responses, he broke down the history of it, by saying PR started in the beginning of the 20th century, initially having a bad rep due to all of the Hollywood celebrity promotion. When social media came along it drastically enhanced the industry with its amazing essence of connectivity. It made the world smaller and allowed us to now go straight to the source and influence individually, although sometimes it can be misused and “deadly” when involving rumors in crisis communication.
Next, he continued with a little about his personal experiences in the industry. Orr was a radio journalist for 8 years up and down the east coast, which he strongly advised to all students interested in PR to do, because it will teaches how the media operates, how to write, how to be edited, and how to work with deadlines. He then moved to working for Philly Orchestra, a non-profit organization focusing on classical music, which was a passion of Orr’s. He loved working for this organization and advised us all to enjoy our careers by working for something or someone we love.
Lastly, he entered his portion of pointers for landing internships and jobs. Starting off with the standard grammatical error check for all submitted documents, doing “homework” on a company before an interview, always having questions to ask an at the end of an interview, and checking social media accounts assuring their content is appropriate. Then he proceeded to give advice based on his experiences as an interviewer for Ab+c Creative Intelligence, which included being confident but not cocky when interviewing and having an answer to the question “what is the last book you’ve read?” because this shows the company what type of person you are based on your personal interests. He also suggested admitting if you have no interest in a topic but always keeping an open mind, and when asked what your weakness is, pick something that you are working on and that is not absolutely essential to your position in the company.
John Orr was a great speaker, leaving the chapter motivated to rock their next interview opportunities with the help of his gracious tips.
Contribution By: Tyler Nolley
By: Tyler Nolley is a sophomore Communication Interest and Spanish Studies double major. As well as, an active member of PRSSA-UD, a member of HerCampus’ PR team, and Sew Baby Sew’s PR and Advertising teams. Feel free to connect with her on LinkedIn.