Tag Archives: college

Connecting with Franco

“You can only know where you’re going, if you know where you’ve been.” That saying can have different meanings for people in all walks of life, but it also holds true for those embarking on the job and internship search. As any recent hire from our office will tell you, the job market is all about connecting with businesses and networking with other professionals in the field. And there’s no better way to get to know a company than to immerse yourself in their daily routines and connect with the people who already work there. After all, you can’t know which direction you want to take in your career if you haven’t explored it in the past. Luckily for those entering the job market, there are a multitude of ways to find out more about a potential workplace and find the right career path.

Tour our office with a student group

Touring an office with a large student group, whether it’s classmates or fellow PRSSA members, is a great way to get to know a company, their clients, and of course connecting with employees working in various industries.

My first visit to Franco was on a tour of agencies in Detroit with Michigan State’s PRSSA group. The tour gave me great benchmarks for what agencies in the city were looking for in potential candidates. While I didn’t have the experience Franco was looking for at the time, I was able to build my experience and keep the agency in mind when I started my job search after graduation.

These group tours are often the easiest for companies to accommodate and give you maximum exposure in the shortest amount of time. What’s key about these group opportunities is making sure you stand out. Bring your resume, introduce yourself to the presenters and guides after the tour and don’t forget to thank the busy professionals taking time out of their day to show you around.

Senior Account Executive Andrea Kenski talks about a recent Salvation Army campaign with students from Eastern Michigan University PRSSA

Franco Senior Account Executive Andrea Kenski talks about a recent Salvation Army campaign with students from Eastern Michigan University PRSSA

Shadow one of our employees

While job shadows can often be the most difficult for companies to accommodate, they can be a great source for building a strong relationship with an employee at a company you’re interested in. It is also the best way to get an understanding of a company’s culture and the services the agency offers to its clients.

In college, it was my job shadow experiences that helped me gain an understanding of the difference between corporate communications, and working at a public relations agency vs. an advertising agency. I not only had the opportunity to start connecting with people, that to this day I’ve maintained relationships with, but it helped me decide what type of communications internships I wanted to pursue further while in school.

One-on-one meetings

Like most people in the communications industry, I LOVE coffee. And I love nothing more than to share my experiences from school and professional life over a good latte. Whether our allegiance is to the green and white or the maize and blue (or any other school around Michigan), my colleagues all come from different backgrounds and have unique life experiences to share with students new to college or even recent graduates. We love to share our lessons learned, where we’ve been, and how we’ve gotten to where we are today.

Connecting with us at a job fair or networking event

As a company trying to attract top talent from schools around Michigan and beyond, we want students to know who we are, just as much as they want us to know them. A great way to get to know more about a company and the people representing it, is to stop by our booth space at a career fair. Whether you’re a freshman or a graduating senior, it makes our job much easier when we’re able to put a face to a name. Make sure you’ve brushed up on your elevator pitch and don’t be afraid to ask questions and check out these three tips for acing job fairs. And, trust me, we do remember you when you make an effort to get to know us!

Franco Account Executive Erica Swoish connecting with PRSSA students across Michigan at a recent career fair

Franco Account Executive Erica Swoish shows off some client swag at a recent career fair for PRSSA students across Michigan

If you’re interested in visiting us, meeting one of our Franco team members, or just taking a peek around the office, let us know! You can call our main line or reach out to me directly for details.

Erica Swoish is an account executive and the student relations coordinator at Franco Public Relations Group. You can reach her at (313) 567-5014 or swoish@franco.com. Follow her on Twitter @eswoish.

 

My time as an intern: Life at a PR agency

Having the right people around you makes for a great internship experience. I found those people right here at Franco.

You’ve landed your dream internship and the hard part’s over…or so you thought. You’ve heard the rumors about the job being intense, the pressure being on and the pace being fast.  But did you believe it?

Working at an agency is all of the above and more. It’s a fast-paced, competitive and most of all a fun experience.  Companies like Franco give interns the opportunity to dive in head first and experience a wide range of public relations practices.

Reasons why agency internships reign supreme:

Opportunity

Interning at an agency can open the door to new experiences, networking opportunities and a chance to work on different accounts including nonprofit, automotive, consumer and health care. If you didn’t know what type of public relations you wanted to practice, you will after interning at a full-service agency like Franco.

Many mentors

Agencies are full of talented PR practitioners servicing a slew of different accounts. With so much talent in one room mentors are easy to come by. If you are open to learning and taking criticism you will be exposed to a diverse group of professionals who specialize in different areas from social media to media relations. It is up to you to take advantage of this opportunity and make the best out of your internship.

Never a dull moment

Agency work is fast paced and the pressure is always on to meet daily deadlines. This makes for an exciting work week full of new challenges and hands-on learning. A good agency internship keeps you occupied with relevant tasks that help you develop professionally; you won’t have time to fetch anyone’s coffee!

Networking

From day one you will be on the phone, emailing and shaking hands. Agency internships give you the chance to put yourself out there and meet different people. Networking on social websites such as Linkedin, Facebook and Twitter offer advantages, but nothing leaves a lasting impression like face-to-face conversation. You will have the chance to meet members of the media, business people and the public. It’s the perfect opportunity to showcase your talents to the decision makers and influencers of the PR world.

Finding an internship is important but finding one perfect for you is a nice bonus. Working at Franco is  perfect for me.  What do you look for in an internship?

Dan Stocking is an intern at Franco Public Relations Group. You can reach him at (313) 567-5094 or stocking@franco.com.  Follow him on Twitter @danielstocking.

Finding value in an internship

Our current interns, Erin and Dan, are busily working on their projects for the week.

You just graduated from college, maybe even summa cum laude. But, if you don’t have experience in your field, finding a job can be a daunting task. The easiest way to get that much needed experience is to find an internship. In fact, it’s best if you have a few!

In public relations, interning at a nonprofit, corporation or agency will give you very different experiences.  If you are searching for your first internship, check out 4 tips for breaking into the world of public relations.

At Franco, we look for interns who are at least juniors in college and have already had a couple internships.  It’s an invaluable experience that could lead to future employment. It’s the longest job interview you’ll ever have – take it from two previous interns!  Here are a few skills you’ll pick up while interning with Franco:

Learn how to manage your time

Agency work is very fast paced, and you’ll rarely have down time. Franco interns have the opportunity to take part in agency and account team meetings, visit clients, sit in on conference calls, draft news releases and build media lists. A Franco internship is not a “coffee internship.” You’re given real responsibilities and serve on account teams, which is why and how you’ll learn to manage your time.

Improve your spoken communication skills

As Michelle Zdrodowski noted in her blog on interpersonal communication, sometimes it is better to pick up the phone than it is to send an email. If you need to provide urgent information, sometimes it’s quicker to make a call than to type it out. Phone calls are also more personable, so it’s easier to convey your message.  At Franco you get to talk to a lot of people — clients, media and suppliers.

Improve your written communication skills

A huge part of public relations is communicating a message through the written word. Our interns have the opportunity to draft media materials including press releases, media advisories, executive biographies and speaking points. Franco’s experienced account team members edit and provide feedback.

Build relationships with the media

Franco interns have the opportunity to contact the media with client news.  While it can be nerve-racking the first few times, after you’ve had some practice it comes naturally.  And you always have Franco’s media relations experts guiding you along the way. From creating a media list and pitching the news to attending TV segments and clipping the results, you’ll see how media relations work from start to finish.

What do you think are the most valuable things to learn from an internship? We’d love hear your thoughts.

Joe Ferlito is a senior account executive at Franco Public Relations Group. You can reach him at (313) 567-5031 or ferlito@franco.com.

Marie Stawasz is an assistant account executive at Franco Public Relations Group. You can reach her at (313) 567-5201 or stawasz@franco.com. Follow Marie on twitter @MarieStawasz.