$$$ for Public Relations Manager

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CareerBuilder’s Debra Auerbach recently published “Talk your way into a new career. She says “Every job requires some degree of communication. And, for some jobs, communication is integrated into every aspect of the role. If you are a natural communicator — you are a strong public speaker, are good at storytelling and enjoy situations where you are constantly interacting with others — you should put those skills to use in your career.

Auerbach offers this example of an occupation for a strong communicator is:

Public Relations Manager (Average annual  pay = $108,260):

Communication is the backbone of a public relations manager’s job. You are responsible for representing your company or your client’s company and maintaining a positive public image. You communicate in the form of news releases you distribute about new products or initiatives, interviews you conduct as a company spokesperson or conversations you have with media outlets. You also communicate daily with clients or other agencies you employ to help execute campaigns. And as a manager, you are likely overseeing a team, which requires constant and clear communication.

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Cover letters that sell

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This article appeared in The Philadelphia Inquirer. It is copyrighted by MonsterWorldwide. Please visit Monster @ http://career-advice.monster.com. It is intended to help my students.

By Kim Isaacs, Monster Resume Expert

John and Linda applied for the same job. They were equally qualified, and each submitted an excellent resume that emphasized accomplishments, training, positive work ethic and dedication.

John included a general cover letter that outlined his career history and aspirations. To save time, he used the same letter to apply for every job opening he looked at. Linda put more effort into her letter. She found out the hiring manager’s name and addressed him directly. She researched the company and learned about its mission, past performance, goals and corporate culture. She also studied the job description and clearly spelled out how she was an excellent match for that particular opening. Linda backed up her claims by highlighting examples of her past success.

Although the candidates were equally qualified, Linda’s extra effort landed her a job interview. John never got called.

Research Before You Write

The more you know about the employer’s needs, the more compelling your letter can be. Review company Web sites, brochures, sales flyers and other promotional materials to glean pertinent information. If possible, speak with current employees to get the inside scoop. Search newspaper archives, public libraries and career-center resources. Do a keyword search using the company name and see what turns up.

Determine Your Unique Selling Points

With the knowledge that you have about the employer, how would you help achieve organizational goals? Set yourself apart: If there are 100 other applicants vying for the same position, why should the hiring manager take a chance on you? Make a list of the top five reasons you’re an excellent candidate.

Construct Your Letter

  • Heading/Date/Inside Address: If you are writing a traditional (not email) letter, select a standard business-letter format such as block style. Your letter’s design should match your resume.
  • Salutation: It’s best to address your letter to a specific person (e.g., “Dear Ms. Jones:”), but use “Dear Hiring Manager,” if there’s no way to find that out. Use “Dear Search Committee:” if the decision will be made by committee. Avoid stale salutations such as “Dear Sir/Madam:” and “To Whom it May Concern:.”
  • Opening Paragraph: Hiring managers are busy and do not care to wade through fluff. Your opening paragraph should clearly state the position for which you’re applying. Include a reference code if requested and the referral source (e.g., recommendation from a current employee, Monster, etc.). Your opening may also include a synopsis of why you are a top candidate for the position. For example:

    Your position advertised on Monster is an excellent fit with my qualifications, as the enclosed resume will attest. My background includes 10 years of success managing international sales programs, top-ranked regions and Fortune 500 accounts. I offer particular expertise in the high tech sector, with in-depth knowledge of networking technology…

  • Body: Your letter’s body contains the sales pitch. This is your chance to outline the top reasons you’re worthy of an interview. When writing the body text, keep in mind that hiring managers are self-centered — they want to know what you can do for them, not learn about your life story. Demonstrate how your credentials, motivation and track record would benefit their operation. Review your top five selling factors (the ones you jotted down when doing your company research) and weave them into the body, perhaps as a bulleted list. Back up achievements with specific examples of how your performance benefited current and former employers. Precede your bulleted list with a statement such as “Highlights of my credentials include:” or “Key strengths I offer include:.”

    Keep your letter positive and upbeat. This is not the place to write a sob story about your employment situation. Put yourself in the hiring manager’s shoes — would you call yourself in for an interview?

  • Closing Paragraph: Your final paragraph should generate a call for action, so express your strong interest in an interview and state that you will follow up soon to confirm your resume was received and discuss the possibility of meeting face-to-face.
  • Complimentary Close and Your Name: End with a professional close such as “Best regards,” “Sincerely” or “Respectfully yours.”





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Rhyan Truett named Litwin Family Medallion Recipient

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On Sunday, May 5, 2013, Rowan University’s Public Relations Student Society of America hosted its annual Spring Gala — Graduation Dinner. Among award recipients was graduating senior Rhyan Truett of Pittsgrove, NJ. Rhyan was chsoen for the Litwin Family Gold Medallion for Outstanding Strategic Writing. Here is my intro for this special individual:

Nancy, my sisters Janice and Eileen…and I are thrilled to present this year’s Litwin Family Medallion for “Outstanding Strategic Writing” to a student…who not only meets all of the criteria but far exceeds them…

Grade Point Average = 3.982

  • Has extensive Community, College and

University service and…

  • “Outstanding, persuasive, strategic and

objective-oriented writing that drives audiences to the desired “Call to Action.”

In a nut graph, this medallion recognizes THEeee “Outstanding Strategic Writer” among all public relations seniors.

It is worth noting…I did not judge. Those who did…point out that while all those considered had excellent credentials, our recipient…is simply outstanding in EVERY facet.

We have had incredible recipients over the years. But this year’s recipient is unique – unlike any other.

This is intro is longer than most of my previous intro and for good reason. It tells a story.

In Spring 2012 I walked into Room 131 – the Writing lab and sitting there in the second seat… right in front of me…was a student I had only briefly known through being her adviser. I was impressed at that FIRST and…at the time…ONLY advisement session and said to myself, like many others, THIS is a student with a bright future. To quote Professor Fulginiti, she was poised, articulate, professionally dressed… in business attire – for an advisement session – and came across … again quoting Tony…mature beyond her years.

Before that first Basic Writing class was finished, I discovered…this student appeared to be an outstanding strategic and critical thinker. Her first assignment was error free, as were her second, third and much more difficult…in-class- assignment number four.

Her writing had been flawless. I had never before experienced this. Finally, on assignment number five, a more complicated News Feature Release, I was able to mark it up in red. Oh, just one red mark. I knew – before long – I had before me…the makings of the best strategic writing student I have ever had – and I’ve had nearly two thousand. Many were GREAT writers – even in college and have gone on to wonderfully successful careers. But this student was even better. Yes, she was unique.

That same quality continued throughout Advanced Public Relations Writing. Her brochure and her team’s Annual Report were quintessential. They established new benchmarks.

Well, you get the idea. I was so thrilled when she applied for the medallion…and I wish for her… what I wish for all of YOU, that you take your talents and achieve your life’s ambitions. For this year’s recipient, it is to work for a National Hockey League team, after she receives her master’s degree in sports management.

Please join me in congratulating the 2013… Litwin Family Medallion Recipient…Rhyan Truett.

I would like Rhyan’s Mom (Dawn) to come up here, too.

Mrs. Truett…we have a little something for you – your own Gold Medal. You deserve it.

I’ve had to deal with Rhyan for only a year and a half. She is a whirlwind. Labor intensive is an understatement. She wears me out on a regular basis.

I cannot imagine what she’s like at home. For that, I present you this. Nance and I thank you for giving us and Rowan, Rhyan. I know you are proud.

Congratulations to you both!!!

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Promo Graduation story on “Landing that first job or internship”

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Rowan University’s Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) Chapter’s final PRomo (award-winning newsletter) for 2013 includes the following article that could help them get that first job. The story is below. (Formatting may be a problem, but the information is right on.)

By M. Larry Litwin, APR, Fellow PRSA

Whether you are a graduating PRSSA senior trying to land that first professional job or a junior embarking on an internship, the future is now.

This three-step process includes customizing a résumé that matches the advertised job description, crafting a strategically persuasive cover letter reflecting you and your personality, and preparing a knock “their” socks off interview. Segment yourself from other applicants as you would any other product. Remember, you are the product.

Even if your résumé is in its infancy, it might be time to refresh it. “CareerBuilder’s” Susan Ricker has spent years researching and writing about door-opening resumes. NPR’s (National Public Radio) Paddy Hirsch has done his share, too. Both offer up-to-date spring cleaning tips:

  • Contact information– This first résumé section needs to include your name, address, a professional email, phone number and links to your portfolios or websites. Regularly check the links to make sure they work and are up to date.
    • Summary of qualifications or Applicant Statement – Do not include an “objective.” They are obsolete. Instead, view this section as the best place to include keywords taken from the job description, since most hiring companies now use applicant-tracking systems to eliminate candidates. However, be sure to incorporate keywords throughout the résumé, and don’t copy and paste the job description. Keep your résumé clean, professional and focused.
    • ·        Experience – Because you are just graduating, you might include professional experience, experience from internships and experience from service jobs that provided funds that helped pay for your education. If you include work as a server, for example, be sure to tie in relationship marketing and the Triple Bottom Line theory and be able to define both. If you provided service beyond expectations to “make a family’s dining experience an evening to remember,” explain it as part of your strategy to earn you a larger tip and praise from your supervisor. Place the most relevant and interesting experience at the top. Hiring managers spend only seconds skimming résumés the first time through. Lead with your strongest qualifications.
    • Education Include details about your Rowan University years and other colleges you attended. There is no need to list relevant courses unless you’ve taken a course that sets you apart from others. Because you are applying for your first full-time position you may include your GPA.
    • References Unless the job posting specifically asks for references, do not include them on your actual résumé. The line, “references available upon request,” is also unnecessary. If you get invited in for an interview, you may want to take a list of references, but keep it to yourself until asked.

Some other tips  

  • Design your résumé with a focus. Every detail should support the idea that you are the best candidate for the position.
  • Use specific, concrete language that measures your accomplishments and stresses positive results.
  • Remove overused words, such as “outstanding, effective, strong, exceptional, good, excellent, driven, motivated, seasoned or energetic.” Beware of unsupported claims of greatness.

Ricker and Hirsch stress going over your résumé drafts before settling on one that works for you and then have several friends or family members proofread it. There must be no typos or formatting errors. Aim for a clean, refreshing and simple résumé that can be submitted online, easily.

Hirsch offers these tips to, not only keep your résumé in the “mix,” but get in to the top of the heap:

  1. 1.     Create two résumés– a search-engine-optimized (SEO) version and a regular version. If you are applying through a search engine, such as Monster or Jobscore, a computer completes a first pass of all applicant résumé before a human ever reads them.


  1. 2.     Make your SEO résumé plain and include keywords. Use bold type sparingly. Format everything to the left side of the page. Make sure everything is spelled correctly. Search algorithms tally the number of keywords to evaluate résumés. The easier you can make it for the computer to find keywords, the better.

3. Old resume rules still apply. After you’ve gotten past the computer review, your résumé will be read by a human. Make sure it is clearly written, typo free, and emphasizes relevant work experience.

www.larrylitwin.com provides some excellent resume and cover letter examples under Student Resources>handouts>No. 70.

Now that you have the interview, here’s your chance to ace it. Some of the more popular questions interviewers ask include:

  • What are your goals?
  • What are your weaknesses?
  • Why did you leave your last job?
  • What was your greatest take away from your internship?
  • If you are working, when were you most satisfied with your job?
  • From what you have learned about this company from your research, what can you do for us that other candidates might not?
  • What are the positive things your boss would say about you?
  • If you were having a dinner party and could invite three famous people plus two others (not so famous), who would they be and why?

While there are no guarantees in strategic communication, research is clear, if you practice your ABCs: Anticipate, Be Prepared and Communicate Clearly, you stand an excellent chance of landing that first job. After all, not only are you a Rowan graduate, but you were also a member of the most honored PRSSA chapter in the nation.


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