Good publicity: the varied challenges of PR

Sarah-Jane Kelsey sitting at her desk at HR Media
Close-up of Sarah-Louise Kelsey

Sarah-Louise Kelsey
studying BA Journalism Studies

​I’ll be honest – when I first walked through the door at HR Media I had absolutely no idea what to expect. 

One of the first questions I was asked was what I liked about PR and how much I knew about it, and truth is I struggled to answer. However, I could now ramble on for hours because what is there not to love about HR Media and PR?

In my eyes, I didn’t spend a week at HRM doing work experience: I spent a week doing a job. Or that’s what it felt like for me.

People always tend to naturally assume that you’ll spend a week’s work experience making tea and coffee, filing, and generally feeling like a bit of pest asking if there’s anything you can help anyone with.

“Most days I didn’t have to ask – work was just delegated to me, making me feel like a valued member of the team”

Not at HR Media – in fact, for most of the days I spent there I didn’t have to ask. Work was just delegated to me, making me feel like a valued member of the team.

I don’t think I could have been made to feel more welcome and part of a team – even if I support the wrong football team according to the majority of people in the office…

One of my concerns before the placement was that I wouldn’t have the guts to speak to people (despite having worked in a pub for three years) but I soon realised how much of a good laugh the team was, and I got on well with them all – it’s hard not to fit in with such a lovely, welcoming team.

On my last day this was put to the test when I had the amazing opportunity to attend an event at Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park – the world’s strongest junior pulled a double-decker bus to celebrate Move More Month. I got to interview him and even have a photo with him (while he lifted me off the ground!).

I felt so comfortable and confident – that is certainly one of the main things I must thank HR Media for – building my confidence.

Being able to interact with complete strangers in an office environment is often an element of work experience that gets overlooked, and it can be quite daunting – but I can now say I have the skills and confidence to do so.

I will 100% be pursuing more time at HR Media and hope to be back there soon in some form.

I really do hope I managed to make a great long-lasting impression on the team as they certainly did for me. Maybe the biscuits and chocolates will have swung it for me.

Once again thank you so much to everyone at HR Media and I really do hope I will see you all again in the near future. 

Sheffield is independently rated by the Complete University Guide 2022 as the number 1 university in England for studying journalism. Want to see journalism’s bigger picture? Study with us.

This blogpost originally appeared on the HR Media website.

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