PR is like a Marriage (and other ridiculous things I’ve considered in my first year at Gambel)
I don’t know why, but people love to use marriage as a comparison for everything. A business partnership is like a marriage. Any sports team requires the same commitment as a marriage. You get it. But in my first year of marriage, and similarly my first year as a #GambelGirl, I’ve learned that, more than the similes it evokes, marriage creates an opportunity for the people around you to ply you with advice, solicited or otherwise.
So here are some bits of wisdom I’ve picked up since July 2016, and how they apply to the PR world. Because after all, PR is like a marriage…
- Communicate. This is self-explanatory in just about every situation, whether personal or professional. To achieve goals in a group, you should speak openly and honestly, while also respecting the rights of others to do the same. With my husband Scott, this means listening to what he wants for dinner (it’s Thai) and where he thinks the lamp should go (he doesn’t really know) even though I know where we’re going to eat tonight (it is Thai) and that the lamp already has a home (on the bedside table). With clients and coworkers, it similarly involves patience, active listening and honesty.
- Try new things. Every person who speaks to newlyweds seems to be perpetually concerned with their impending boredom. This always makes me laugh because, as newlyweds, Scott and I have moved several times, adopted kittens and seem to never try the same restaurant twice (except the previously mentioned Thai). While this advice doesn’t feel appropriate for us, it’s always in the back of our minds. At Gambel, it’s always in the front of our minds because we brainstorm for our clients on an almost daily basis, coming up with ideas to position them in the community. We love the people with whom we work, so it’s important to us to make sure everyone in New Orleans (and beyond) loves them too and that often requires thinking outside of the box.
- Continue to have date night. This is one of those pieces of advice that I love, mostly because I love to go out to eat with Scott. Taking the time to go somewhere new and have unique evening is special, so I know we’ll always do it. In our office, we try to do the same. We’re all friendly in the office, but it’s important to take our friendships to the next level every now and again. Whether it’s networking at White Linen Night, happy hour at a new bar or simply having Friendsgiving in our conference room, we take the time to have real conversations and learn about each other. Our Gambel Girl “dates” are always worth it because, through these events, we become better friends, which leads to a better, more honest working environment.
- Have fun. It’s easy to get into a routine that becomes monotonous. I’m lucky to have Scott because he can make even the most mundane tasks silly and exciting. From chopping onions to cleaning the bathroom, we always have a blast. Similarly at Gambel, our open environment allows us to be goofy (when appropriate, of course), and this goofiness breeds real creativity for our client work. One of our favorite tasks is to brainstorm around events, thinking of lagniappe features that will make our clients’ programs stand out.