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Change + Knowledge = Professional Growth

Beth Croughan

After nearly four years spent working in-front-of the camera as a television reporter, I made the decision to transition behind-the-scenes. I began my first week at Prosek Partners, just a week after the New Year.

While many of the skills I gained while out in the field are transferable in my new career, during the past two months I’ve learned copious amounts about the ins and outs of life on the other side. And, as is often the case, the more you learn about a subject, the more you realize how much more there is to learn. For me, navigating through this professional change has been aided by a strong support system; both at work and at home.

From day one, I was encouraged to ask questions and encouraged to have a voice and get involved. It also didn’t hurt to be able to participate in Prosek’s winter offsite, new hire training, several hour-long educational sessions and a client’s Global Public Relations Summit in just my first couple of months on the job.

Knowledge truly is power. Power to grow. And power to change.

In addition to the educational opportunities, there are several other things I believe have helped with the transition thus far.

Here are some of them, outlined by Career Sherpa Hannah Morgan in an article for U.S. News and World Report:

1. “Ask your new manager for a meeting.” This was already arranged during my first week at Prosek, and both she and I expressed interest in making it a bi-weekly occurrence; this way, I’m constantly in-the-know of where I stand and how I’m doing and it’s also a great opportunity to get to know one another.

2. “Observe co-workers.” Fortunately, I have rock-star colleagues who are patient and kind and willing to take the time to explain things. It’s also been really beneficial to listen and watch the way they work in meetings and with clients.

3. “Figure out who you want to be.” In addition to the work I’m doing with our clients, Prosek provides a lot of other great opportunities to get involved within the company. This is an awesome way to learn more, to be exposed to staff that I might not have the chance to work with on a regular basis and to begin to map out my course in this career.

4. “Be open to new ways of doing things.” Being new to the business, it’s very important that I use and rely on the advice received from co-workers—and then over time, I’ll develop what works best for me.

5. “Keep a running list of accomplishments.” While I was a reporter, I kept what I called a “happy folder.” In it, I put any emails and letters that I received complimenting the work I was doing. It was a truly awesome way to be able to look back and visualize my successes—and I’ve already started a “happy folder” here.

And, two others I’d add to that list are to take notes and stay organized. I maintain a daily to-do list and maintain separate folders in both my inbox and on my desk. Have you recently changed careers? What tips can you offer? End of Story

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