When I first started as a Public Relations professional, the concept of reputation management had more to do with official press releases and scouring papers to ensure nothing outrageous was said about our clients. But as the internet grew so did everyone’s entitlement to their own opinion. It was easy to blow the smallest of issues completely out of proportion in 140 characters or less. A reputation built through years of hard work could be brought crashing down in a day, often times based on rumours with no heed paid to facts. Corporate reputation management in real-time has become the need of the hour. Like other corporate reputation management jobs, mine went from being largely reactive to essentially proactive too. Working at a corporate reputation consultancy has taught me many things, the most important of which I’d like to share with you:
Going All In:
Our clients mean the world to us and we’re never far away when crises comes calling. I often joke that to know what commitment truly means, one should try a reputation management job. It often means going all in and giving every effort your very best so that the reputation of your client is not just maintained, but built every step of the way. And if the work is intensive, the reward is equally gratifying. It helps to keep you on your toes and wake up to exciting challenges every day. Work is never a stagnant process and the constant activity ensures I grow as a professional each and every moment.
Learning From Mistakes:
When there is so much at stake, mistakes can be costly. But they also provide lessons you will never forget. My reputation management job has always had a sharp learning curve, which constantly pushes me to do better. Because mistakes can be so detrimental to the reputation of my client, I constantly double-check facts and am engaged in developing alternate winning strategies. Like they say, the strongest steel is tempered by the hottest flame. I am always sure of the next step, something that a past mistake has taught me to be.
Corporate reputation jobs come with their own set of challenges. Whether it’s working with a difficult client or dealing with a series of crises, there’s so much to gain from the experience. You learn to maintain a positive attitude and develop a sense of objectivity without letting your personal bias affect any of your interactions. I’d be lying if I said this hasn’t helped me in my personal life too. Overcoming obstacles of every kind is part of the job, and a part of life.
It may be obvious that I love my job; but when you’re learning something new every day and growing not just a professional, but as a person too, the advantage my career gained by working at a corporate reputation consultancy is much more than can be expressed in mere words.