The old adage “Curiosity killed the cat” came to mind the other day during a conversation (aka: a “rant”) in one of my classes at Curry College, where I head the undergrad Public Relations Concentration and teach most of the PR courses.
We had had a writing assignment on the “democratization” of reading that came about in part because of the introduction of paperback books.
It was glaringly obvious as I was reviewing the papers that no one had a clue as to the actual meaning of the word…and not a single soul had bothered to look it up.
While I was all set to launch into a self-righteous hissy-fit, I chose not to go that route.
Good things come our way, sometimes unexpectedly; and not-so-good (I’m a PR guy; I can’t say “bad”!) things fall on us.
This has become particularly interesting to me in my now decade-long role of “head honcho” of the Curry College Communication Department’s undergraduate Public Relations Concentration. As I talk to more and more students who either are preparing to enter the workplace or have just taken their first tentative steps “out there,” I realize more and more the wonders that life holds for each and every one of us.
I’ve also seen this when I meet as a College of Fellows mentor with young professionals at PRSA’s International Conferences, something I’ve been doing for the past few years as part of my personal and professional commitment to the standards and ideals represented by the College.
It occurred to me recently as I was settling in for my fourth meeting of the week with a former student (not the same one four times, I hasten to add!) that somehow I’ve gotten pretty good at one of the key skills of a public relations professional…listening.
I suppose I’ve always been okay at this, but I used to feel the need to always interject my own opinions…even when not solicited…into the conversation.
I’m sure someone reading this will mutter, “Well, you idiot, that’s what PR people are supposed to do!” And he or she will be right, to a degree.