By Hanna Herrin
The Hoffman Agency, Portland-Vancouver
Prior to joining The Hoffman Agency, I had intern opportunities to explore the public relations industry — both in-house and agency — but too often, I found myself siloed in these positions. The minute I started my internship with Hoffman, however, I knew it was going to be a different experience — full of opportunity, passion and a chance to tell stories that mattered.
I began at Hoffman with zero knowledge of what a career in tech PR would look like, but armed with an ardent curiosity and a willingness to learn. I’ve since developed a clear understanding of the industry and with it, a passion for pursuing a career in tech PR!
Hoffman is a special place, full of talented individuals who care about each other. In this internship, I’ve already had more experiences than I thought possible. My skills have been put to the test, I’ve been challenged and pushed to maximize my potential.
The result? I feel confident, excited about my future and part of something bigger — the Hoffman family.
In my opinion, an internship is one of the most valuable experiences you can have while you’re in school. It gives you the opportunity to test out a company, to expand your skillset and start discovering your PR niche. As I reflect on my last six weeks at Hoffman, here are a few lessons I’ve learned along the way:
Be a sponge.
See everything — every engagement, every phone call, every five-minute team huddle — as an opportunity to learn and grow.
Bring a pen and paper … and a positive attitude.
I’m sure you’ve heard the age-old saying, “Always bring a pen and paper to a meeting.” I say, also bring along a positive attitude. Maintaining a positive attitude (even if you know you’ll be media listing all afternoon) is a great way to show dedication and commitment as an intern. Who knows, your smile might even brighten up your coworkers’ day.
Project your authentic self.
Sometimes, we get so caught up in in performing and meeting expectations that we forget about ourselves. Be yourself and let your personality shine through. Authenticity is not only important in business, it’s important in life.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions.
I’ve always been naturally curious, so asking questions is just a part of my daily routine and how I interact with my environment. The only way you can know for sure is to ask. So ask!
Remember, what you say matters.
Yes, you’re “just an intern,” but your thoughts and opinions matter. If you’re lucky enough to be a Hoffmanite, you should know this already — speak up! Take every opportunity to share your ideas during team brainstorms, volunteer to write for your agency’s blog or share your thoughts on industry insights with your team. Taking advantage of these opportunities shows your initiative — it will pay off!
Want to hear more? Read past installments of “Life As A HA Intern.”