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It's Pretty Hard Being a PR Professional Today

One job you couldn't pay me a millions dollars to do anymore, and that is being a crisis communication public relations specialist. I previously worked in the public relations field about five years ago, and many of my accounts involved crisis communication. Back then my crisis communication tasks involved writing press releases for meat recalls and also sending out media advisories regarding an apology from a corporate executive. Depending upon the level of the crisis, I would have to work fourteen to sixteen hour days. In the beginning I really enjoyed my job, but after about two years it really started stressing me out. However, when I look at some of the crisis communication situations today, I realize that what I had deal with was no where near as stressful. I mean I cannot imagine being a publicist or media specialist for companies like Zynga or Facebook, or for people like Beyonce and Justin Bieber. This is why I have a lot of sympathy for public relations professionals today.

When I think about how much controversy Beyonce has been involved in over the past few weeks, I can only imagine how many sixty hour weeks her publicist has had to work. I know that many people will say that her publicist should not mind because they make a lot of money, but take it from me after a certain point it does not matter how much money you make. After having to work all these long days for such a long period of time, all you want to do is hide and rest. It also does not help when you have to handle a crisis and create a positive media campaign at the same time. This is what I have recently seen Beyonce's PR camp do. First they had to handle the rumors about her pregnancy, which was followed by her lip synching controversy. In the middle of all this they had to come up with a strategic media plan to promote her Super Bowl appearance and upcoming music tour. Some people may view all this as exciting, but I view it as a lot of work and a lot of stress that I don't need.

I also imagine it is not a picnic handling the PR duties these days for Zynga. First you have to deflect all the criticism about the company losing game players and money, and then you have to deal with all the negative publicity regarding top executives leaving the company. In this case the PR team has to be very careful, because their campaigns and PR strategies have a lot of influence on Zynga's stock prices. The one thing Zynga does not need is more investors selling their comany shares.

If I had to work in the PR profession today, I would only be willing to create press releases and media advisories for local community bookstores and bakeries. In other words, I don't want to have anything to do with corporate companies, celebrities or any type of crisis situations.  

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