I think it’s important for anyone interested in pursuing a career in public relations or as we say in government, public affairs, to be interested in all aspects of what’s happening in politics, media, local and national activities, etc. In other words, it’s important to have your thumb on the pulse of what’s happening locally, regionally and nationally. That’s what your boss wants to know and probably what he or she doesn’t have time to focus on.

I’ve always found that if I can provide added value to the organization, specifically my immediate supervisor, with real-time important facts, that effort makes me invaluable as an employee and provides me access that other players in the organization do not have.

In government public affairs we work for the citizens of the United States, not one political party or another. It’s important that we remember this because that concept can easily get lost in the heat of battle, especially when you’re trying to get a news release coordinated and distributed and a certain supervisor may want to slant a story a certain way. The Department of Defense public affairs guidance has always stayed with me throughout my career.

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