PR is a tricky profession. You have to have a plan, know how to execute it and be ready for any eventuality that comes along. I have over 10 years of experience in PR (ugh…that hurt) with multiple industry experience. While you can always be prepared for any eventuality, you can still get hurt…just like in life.
Recently (well in February), I broke my arm…my right arm…my dominate arm. Needless to say, it sucked big time. I broke my arm in such a precarious location that it was misdiagnosed the first time. It also sucked (pardon my language) that it was at the very tip-top of my humorous bone (near the shoulder). What that means is that it couldn’t be put in a cast…just a sling. It was literally like having one arm tied behind my back. Only, it was more like having it sewn to my stomach.
Everything changed for about 3 months. Any way I used to do things had to change. I learned how to sign my name with my left hand. I learned how to type with one hand. I definitely utilized dictation more on my iPhone. Don’t get me wrong…there were still a lot of things I couldn’t do. I couldn’t drive my manual transmission car. I wasn’t allowed to walk my dog (for safety purposes obviously) and I honestly couldn’t really cook for myself – no chopping veggies, sautéing or baking a big meal…all of which requires two arms.
Fortunately, I was still able to adapt to this eventuality that I never saw coming. I hated it…but I adapted. And I realized it could have been much worse.
PR is somewhat similar to having one arm tied behind your back (or sewn to your stomach). Just when you get comfortable with how things work, something happens. You then have to figure out how to do everything you know in a different way. I won’t go as far to say, “It makes you stronger in the end.” But I will say that shit happens, and if you figure it out, you won.
There’s always those few tasks that are hard to get any employee to do. They’re either so mundane that you have to stand and work while completing them so you don’t fall asleep, or it’s a task that you know will interrupt your working groove so you just keep putting it off.
You know the type of work I’m talking about. But how do you motivate employees to make sure it’s done on time and done right? INCENTIVES! It’s almost like trying to motivate yourself to eat better…you make yourself do it by incentivizing yourself after awhile (i.e. after two weeks of eating vegetables at every meal you’ll buy yourself a new pair of shoes….for instance).
Here are some great ways to incentivize or reward your employees for doing great work.
Meal Time: There’s nothing like a free lunch to perk up your work day! If your team bands together to go above-and-beyond what the task required, reward them with a lunch outing to continue the celebration!
Early In…Early Out: Do you have that one employee that’s always in the office earlier than everyone else making sure all deadlines are met? Reward him or her with an early dismissal from work. Chances are, they’re an early-bird/morning person and would enjoy an afternoon to do their personal errands or just relax.
Over-Achievers: Don’t you love it when you assign a task to an employee with a certain goal and they just shatter right through it? ME TOO! To reward them, take a look at their social media profiles and find out where they like to shop or what they like to do for fun and get them a gift card that they’ll really appreciate and actually use. They worked hard for you so take the time to reward them with something they would actually want!
Today feels like the longest day, and we are just getting started on a very busy week. We needed a pick me up and perhaps you do too, so for your viewing pleasure: The Music Box. Guaranteed to inspire or at least put a smile on your face.
At least ten times a day, twice a night and possibly once during a long shower, I update my to-do lists. And that is the bare minimum. If you’re anything like me, you may also have post-it notes (irl or on your laptop), a digital list in your phone notepad, something like Evernote or other apps to keep you organized…and you’re still trying to find the best way. Through lots of trial and error I have a pretty good system, and below are a few of my favorite organizational tool, but I’d love to hear yours too! Any tricks to keep the to-dos on track?
Wunderlist is one of my favorite list builders. I get great satisfaction from checking off the tasks and they are easy to share with others. (Available on Android and iOS).
GTasks syncs up perfectly with your Google calendar and you can easily set reminders. This used to have a lot of glitches but it seems to be fixed now. Combine it with Google Keep and you’ve got a solid set-up.
I mentioned it above, but I will say it again – GET EVERNOTE! It was recommended by our graphic designer and it is incredibly if you like putting pen to paper like I do. It turns everything digital for you. Gotta love that.
And when I jot something down in the middle of the night? This is my current favorite notepad:
Tis’ the season for school to get back started and the world is a-buzz! From shopping for school supplies and uniforms to school open houses and teacher meet-and-greets, the first day of school will be here before you know it (if it hasn’t started already like some schools have today).
I personally love back to school time and I don’t even have kids! Last week I stocked up on sales and BOGO’s at Publix, checked out office supplies at Office Depot and did a little revamping of my wardrobe since tax free week started last Friday. It’s one of my favorite times of the year!
That being said, there are a few things that get a little annoying this time of year.
Here are a few of my favorite and least favorite back to school.
The Best of Back to School
1. Tax Free Week: From August 7-16, enjoy tax free week for buying clothes, school supplies and computers….talk about Yaye!
2. Adorable Pictures on Facebook: It’s become quite the tradition lately – parents taking pictures of their children on their first day of school with a sign of what grade they’re entering. I LOVE THESE PICTURES! They’re so adorable and I get to catch up on my friends’ and families’ kids and how much they’ve grown.
3. Brand New Office Supplies: When I was in school I loved shopping for school supplies and getting all new pencils, pens, backpacks and binders. As an adult, I love shopping for Mugsy PR office supplies! Emily and I use this time of year to take stock of our supplies and what we need for the office. Ink is usually at the top of the list, followed by more USBs, printing paper, envelopes and of course….the fun stuff like funky pens and bright notebooks!
The Worst of Back to School
1. The Change in Traffic Patterns: I get so used to how the traffic is during the summer without school zones and big yellow buses. Now it’s back to the usual traffic – except for the first two weeks that are usually a little more chaotic as we all try to adapt to a new routine.
2. Speed Traps: To be clear, I NEVER speed in school zones…it’s just not worth it. However, I may or may not hit the gas a little harder than usual (accidentally of course) when traveling in a pack of cars. Usually around this time of year, there are more police officers out with radar detectors and sometimes with 3 or 4 cars pulled over at one time. Be careful out there and don’t speed!
3. Fighting Over Paper: Although I love tax free week, I always feel bad fighting over paper and supplies with the excited teens and tots going back to class. They sure are lucky they’re adorably sweet kids because I always cave and give the supplies up…LOL.