The difference between school and work
Upon completing my first month as account coordinator, I have realized that college taught me most of the things I needed to know in order to fulfill this position, but left me with plenty of room to learn.
In my PR classes, I learned about writing in journalistic style, the fundamentals of news releases, building a media list and pitching to editors. Having a job is similar to being back in school because there’s always assignments that need to be done now, and projects that need to be worked on progressively or addressed later in the future.
While my time in school did a great job preparing me for employment, it seems that college served more as a trade school than as a well-rounded learning experience. There’s no way college to teach you everything you need to know for the real world, and there are more than a few lessons that my job has taught me …
To start, I’ve learned in the past four weeks that even though you put in the time and effort, it doesn’t mean that you’ll see the results you desired – or any results at all for that matter. For example, you can spend an hour crafting a fabulous product pitch to a magazine editor and never hear a reply. Sure, the effort wasn’t made completely in vain but being ignored is certainly disappointing.
And unlike school, the things you do at work are not for your own benefit. A true killer of the procrastination bug is the knowledge that your coworkers and your company are depending on your work. Everything you do at work is for the good of the business, and not so much for personal gain.
In school, there’s always to push to join organizations related to your field of study plus other extracurricular activities. When Kim and I spoke to Clemson University’s chapter of PRSSA, I remembered how much I gained from being a part of the organization when I was a member. Like school, work life is much more enriched when you become involved in professional organizations and volunteer activities.
It’s only been a month, so I can only imagine all of the other things I will learn during my time here.