So you’re thinking of setting up as a freelance PR consultant, but not sure if you have the qualities required? Don’t worry! In this short article I’ll set out the ten essential qualities any successful, self-employed PR person must possess.
1. Be Optimistic
Those who expect success tend to succeed, while those who expect failure tend to fail. It therefore makes sense that if you want to succeed in the world of public relations, you need to become an optimist and expect success right from the very beginning.
2. Be Goal-Oriented
People who know what they want are always more likely to get it. The most successful people in business are those who have clear goals to aim for. So decide right now what your goals are, in terms of income, lifestyle, and so on. When your goals are clear in your own mind, you dramatically increase your chances of reaching them.
3. Be Self-Disciplined
As the old saying goes, the only place success comes before work is in the dictionary. This being the case, start becoming more self-disciplined, both in your business and personal life. Plan your work, then work to your plan. If you do this day in, day out, you will make constant and steady progress towards achieving the goals you have set for yourself.
4. Be Nice
Some people think that success in business requires the ability to be ruthless. Not so. The most successful people in business are generally those who are genuinely nice to others. In the world of public relations, as in life, if you are nice to others then the chances are that they will be nice to you, and this can make your job a great deal easier.
5. Be Helpful
Aim to be genuinely helpful to your clients. Don’t make the mistake of doing only what you are paid to do. Instead, go that extra mile. Treat your clients as if they were members of your own family and your helpfulness will automatically increase their loyalty to you as their PR consultant.
6. Be Honest
In all your business dealings, be honest. Don’t say what you think a potential client wants to hear just to please him or her. Instead present your advice and opinions honestly. Do this and your clients will come to genuinely value your input, knowing that you are not in the habit of saying things just for the sake of saying them.
7. Be Studious
Even if you have completed a training course in public relations (and you should), don’t ever think that you know it all. Instead, be a life-long student. Buy books on PR and promotion, and study how other PR consultants operate and learn from them. The longer you remain a student of success, the more likely you are to become a master of it.
8. Be Creative
The world of public relations is a lot like the world of advertising — the more creative you are, the more successful you will be. Of course, more often than not you will be using fairly standard techniques such as press releases to promote your client. However, if you can inject some of your own personal creativity into these tried-and-tested methods, you will find they become even more effective. As a result, you will become a more successful PR consultant.
9. Be Enthusiastic
Be passionate about your business and life. Enthusiasm sets you apart as someone who loves what they do rather than as one who merely shows up in order to fulfill an obligation. Even better, you will find that the more enthusiasm you inject into your daily life, the more successful you will become. Why? Because everyone loves enthusiastic people — especially clients!
10. Be Persistent
Success won’t come overnight, and it won’t come easily. It is likely that you, like any other professional, will face obstacles and setbacks as you tread the royal road to success. To get through these rough patches you must become a person who is habitually persistent. Remember, winners never quit and quitters never win. Persist in pursuing your goals and as long as you refuse to throw in the towel you will eventually achieve them.
So long as you possess, or can develop, these ten qualities, there is no reason why you cannot enjoy a long and successful career as a self-employed PR professional.