PR Specialist, Brianna Zimmer, holds up her first piece of earned media.

It really doesn’t matter what industry we’re talking about; women are underrepresented. For the sake of this blog, we’ve narrowed it down to focus on public relations. Interestingly enough, 75% of the jobs in PR are held by women. Here’s the kicker…

  • 78% of CEOs are men
  • 65% of boardroom seats are filled by men
  • $6,000 is the average pay gap between men and women

Women pursue a career in public relations for a variety of reasons. Shannon Stubo, vice president of corporate communications at LinkedIn says, “I think a lot of younger women go into PR because they think they’re going to be the glamorous Samantha Jones from Sex and the City where you’re opening up restaurants and promoting hot new clubs.” Just based on our experience, 90% of PR is herding cats, and by cats, we mean clients, journalists, sources, etc. Don’t get us wrong, though. We love public relations.

Women ❤️ PR

Women love working in public relations. Why? Well, it has a lot of great features, including:

  • Collaboration: Stories encompass multiple parties. If you are announcing something statewide, chances are there are multiple players. Bringing people together is an important aspect of the job.
  • Social: PR peeps are talking to people nonstop, whether they’re pitching a story or coordinating an interview. You will never be lonely in this profession.
  • Flexible: The schedule is always changing. You might be at a 5:00 a.m. T.V. appearance or fielding calls on the weekend due to breaking news. So yeah, the schedule is flexible, but also crazy.
  • Creative: If you can’t think out of the box, find a different profession. PR professionals need to find the story in the seemingly mundane and ordinary. That means crafting a story that takes some digging to find.
  • Drinking: Okay, maybe we added this one specifically for us, but it’s accurate nonetheless.

It’s Hella Fun

The hours are crazy, the clients demanding, the stories exhausting and change is constant. Despite or perhaps in spite of all this, the job is f**king awesome.
In 2017, CareerCast ranked PR as the #8 most stressful job out of 200 professions. #1 was military personnel.

All of this said, there is nothing like landing a national or international story for a client. After eight months of work on one story with one publication…it finally publishes. Celebrate that win.

Take Action

You’ve seen the percentages. You understand the numbers…now, what are we gonna do about it? Women need to support other women and we need to advocate for each other. We are unstoppable when we stand together.
Here is what we can do:

  • Eliminate stereotypes. If you hear some BS about women not being cut out for PR because they have a family or the stress of the executive level position will be too much…step up and shut it down.
  • Promote yourself. Gah, women are terrible at this. We feel as if we are bragging or being prideful if we admit we did a damn good job. We heard a statistic the other day that a man will apply for a job he is maybe 60% qualified for, while a woman will wait until she is 100% qualified to go after the same job. Dammit. You are good enough, smart enough and, gosh darnit, we love you.
  • Support each other. This bears repeating. Your best advocates will always be the women walking beside you or the women that went before you. We must lean on each other.
  • Speak up. Don’t be shy. If you want something, go after it. If you have something to say, say it. If you see injustice, address it. We are not shrinking violets.

It’s time to change the statistics. We want 78% of CEO positions filled by women.

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