Graduate Paloma Paige reflects on month placement with Holyrood PR
THAT’S a wrap! After four weeks on Holyrood PR’s graduate placement, it is time to round up the highlights and share my most valuable take-aways from the experience.
Expertise in Action
People often ask, “Sure it works in theory, but does it work in practice?”
Without a doubt, gaining real experience rather than relying on…well… theory…has been the most valuable aspect of my placement. As an intern, it is one thing to read about what a company does and an entirely different learning experience to see it happening in real time.
I started the programme with very clear objectives as to which skills and areas of expertise I wished to explore. The team helped me identify areas to develop including learning about innovative ways media relations can elevate the property and public sector.
The placement had a clear structure of things to cover but also allowed for flexibility meaning I could steer the internship in a way that benefitted my learning journey with every day presenting a new set of challenges.
The Learning Journey
As I progressed through each week, the processes started to come more easily.
Learning how processes fit together early in the placement left more scope for creativity and crafting new ideas. I have appreciated being given the opportunity to make my own unique suggestions within the wider HPR framework.
For example, I have been able to draft graphics to accompany social media posts or illustrate HPR’s success stories. Revisiting digital design, for which I developed an interest back in high school, has been very rewarding as I found myself navigating photo-editing toolkits and puzzling over the fonts and colours that would best catch the eye.
Blog writing has also featured frequently on the daily agenda and here I am writing my last. Blogging has punctuated the working day with refreshing opportunities to be less formal and less journalistic.
Finally, I’ll say something about researching. This term doesn’t really do justice to the sprawl of the task but I am always energised by the challenge of starting a research task from scratch. It is also a way to learn more about particular clients or background context that applies to a number of projects. I admit that I also found myself smiling at times, thinking of how much my pub quiz performances will improve from the range of facts I was absorbing by osmosis.
In an industry where communicating a company’s messages to the right audience, in the right way, and at the right time is its bread and butter, it would be ironic if we were unable to communicate our own messages.
Getting to know yourself as a professional is part of the learning journey and in that regard my placement has been absolutely invaluable.
It has been a pleasure to learn from the team this past month. I am looking forward to taking all I have learned here to the next stages in my journey.