Important Qualities To Look For When Hiring Your Next PR Pro

Important qualities to look for when hiring your next PR pro

PR pro

Enthusiasm, resilience, and dedication.

These are just a few of the many qualities you should look for when interviewing candidates for a PR position.

Whether you’re an agency or a startup, a small business or large corporation, there will come a time when you need to hire for a public relations position.

When it comes to hiring a public relations professional, you must be very selective with your process. The best PR professionals are the ones who easily build relationships, are always looking for opportunities, intuitive about industry trends, and have the ability to create effective strategies.

As you begin your hiring process for your PR position, here are five factors to look for when interviewing candidates:

Pay attention to their character.

The most important quality you need to pay attention to when hiring a public relations professional is their character. Sure, while their hard skills are important, you need to determine whether or not their personality aligns with the values of your organization.

As you interview candidates, ask them questions that will give you better insight about their character and views on ethical decisions PR professionals face. You want to ensure you hire a person who values loyalty, trust, honesty, and integrity.  

Ask about their writing skills.

Writing is the most important hard skill for public relations professions to have. A strong candidate is someone who can write well with efficiency. They need to have the ability to write a press release, news article, or even an email in a short period of time.

When you interview candidates, be sure to request writing samples. You should also consider giving them a writing test to determine whether or not their skills are up to par.

Pay attention to their energy.

Public relations doesn’t stop when you go home at the end of the day. This is why you need to make sure you hire an individual who has the enthusiasm, energy, and strength to be successful a successful PR professional.

This is a key characteristic for talented PR pros because there will be endless challenges where they’ll get knocked down and have to get back up again. Working with difficult clients and planning events can bring unexpected obstacles, too. This is why you need to hire someone who’s ready for any challenge. 

Make sure they’re persistent.

One of the biggest challenges for PR professionals is staying persistent with a goal. Especially with media relations, it can be very stressful at times when gaining media coverage for your organization or a client.

During your interview, ask the candidate about their experience with accomplishing goals. Whether it was building media coverage for a client or getting approval for an event, pay close attention to what the candidate did in order to reach success. 

Learn about their creativity.

The nature of the modern public relations world is dependent on creativity. The only way your clients or organization can get noticed is if there’s a unique story to tell.

As you interview candidates, ask for samples from their portfolio that would illustrate their creativity. Whether it’s an example of a social media strategy or an event they coordinated, make sure the candidate can illustrate their abilities.

When interviewing candidates for a PR position, remember to pay close attention to their personality in addition to their skills and experience. You want to hire someone who will represent your organization in the best way, so be very thoughtful during your interview process.

What qualities and experience do you look for in stellar PR professionals?

Olivia Adams

Olivia Adams is a public relations senior at Ferris State University. She is a blogger who loves everything social media, digital, and of course, coffee! When she's not busy tweeting or writing, Olivia spends much of her time baking desserts and running. Follow her on Twitter @OliviaAdamsPR.