You can attend numerous classes in an attempt to be as prepared as possible for a career in public relations, but nothing shapes you more than stepping into the real world and learning through involvement. That is what the Comprise shadow program is all about.
As I reflect upon the past year, I credit much of my professional development and vast growth in the PR industry to my experience on both sides of the Comprise shadow program, which jump-started my career amidst the global pandemic and helped integrate me into the company’s culture.
Shortly after I started my internship in December 2020, I began remotely shadowing my mentor and colleague Madison Job, who is an account executive at Comprise. She guided me through the PR basics and brought me up to speed with our clients and the industries we serve. Within four months of screen sharing, virtually watching and learning, I was able to absorb a lot of the valuable information necessary to begin putting the pieces together. Thanks to the internship and my experience participating in the shadow program, I quickly developed my skills and gained the knowledge necessary to help me seamlessly step into my mentor role. Having benefitted from our shadow program myself, I now have the privilege of helping our newest employees acclimate themselves to the world of PR.
The Three Pillars of Comprise’s Shadow Program
The moment I joined Comprise’s staff, I was embraced by the team’s support and structure. Being surrounded by skilled and compassionate professionals provided an environment that inspired me to challenge myself and grow as a PR professional. The continued encouragement has empowered me to lead by example and to pass that knowledge along to our newest team members.
Effective and encouraging communication is essential when instilling new knowledge. Needless to say, the path to teaching someone successfully lies in clear direction from an inspiring team. Through consistent communication, Comprise always ensures assignments are understandable and goals are comprehensible. A learning lesson through this pillar is to always close the loop!
At Comprise, the innate involvement of everyone from top to bottom helps establish understanding and enhances collaboration. Throughout the shadow program, both as a mentor and a mentee, a deep level of trust is built as responsibilities are earned over time. In the end, the most rewarding part of the shadow experience is watching the expansive growth as the intern develops as a PR professional.
The personal and professional impact of participating in a shadow program benefits the mentee, the mentor and the company as a whole. The Comprise shadow program experience was absolutely invaluable to me and created a foundation for professional development, success and PR knowledge. It’s nearly impossible to describe the importance of establishing such a program in words, but I’ll try with two: Worth it!