There’s nothing better than exploring the streets of a foreign city on a warm sunny day, or having a coffee at the cutest café. Living the PR lifestyle can be a little hectic at times especially if you have what seems like 100 projects on the go; throw travel in the mix and things get even crazier. Traveling for work is one of the perks of a communications job, sometimes clients will fly you out to come work on a project, and sometimes you will have to arrange flights for a client to come see you. Whether you’re planning a trip for a client, or yourself we have some apps that are sure to make planning smooth.
Hopper is a great app for planning a trip, it takes the guess work out of searching for a flight. Just select a destination and let the app find you the best month, time, and airline to get the most bang for your buck. The apps uses an algorithm to calculate when the best time to buy and the best time to fly. This is important for the PR girl because it allows you to quote the client with the best most accurate prices.
Tripit is also another good app for business travel. The app organizes your flight itinerary, meetings, and hotel information all into one calendar. The information can be easily shared as a document with anyone on your team through email. This makes it easy to coordinate flights with other employees, and keep track of clients as they travel.
Concur makes keeping track of expenses abroad easy. Take a picture of your receipt and upload it to the app in seconds, then quick add for easy approval from management. It makes business expenses easier to manage for all parties and you don’t have to worry about forgetting your receipt.
Better than Google Maps. Citymapper a user-friendly route planner. Choose from 30 pre-programed cities and find the easiest route to your destination. The app lets you select a number of different variables to get you the best route possible while showing you real-time departures, delays and even the calories you burn on your trip. The best part of the app is that it shows you local fares for your desired method of transportation.
Saw a café you’d like to try while making your way to a museum? Create an account and save destinations for easy access next time!
The holy grail of travel apps, Google translate does just what it says, with its handy picture-to-text translation; it’s easier than ever to read signs and packages while traveling.
No Wi-Fi? Make sure you download the language in the app for offline access!!
It might seem silly, but when you’re in a foreign country or unknown city, of which you don’t speak the language, asking for the nearest bathroom might be a little embarrassing. This app pulls locations for public washrooms around the globe and finds the one closest to you!
In the ever changing business world, it is not uncommon to go straight from the office to an event and Public Relations professionals have mastered this technique. Being in the media industry, it’s critical to always be prepared, that means bringing extra shoes, a blazer, food, and other key pieces to accommodate you throughout your busy day. All this can make you feel a like a crazy bag lady at first, but rest assured we got you covered.
We’re giving you access to our tried and true outfit solutions for the girl on the go.
The pantsuit is one of the hardest (but not impossible) outfits to pull off as everything needs to be impeccably tailored. Some of us are fortunate enough to have a more relaxed workplace but for those gals that aren’t, we found the perfect way to make the day-to-night transition seamless, no pun intended.
Day: If you know you will have to head out after work make sure your daytime outfit incorporates a white shirt; a crisp white shirt as it is the perfect canvas for spicing up an outfit. Keep it simple and clean, this will make it easier to accessorize without having to carry around a whole new outfit.
Night: For transitioning to night, layer on the accessories. Find a necklace, earrings or even a bracelet that easily brings some sparkle to your outfit, this trick can be used for anything from a company dinner to a networking social. Remember you aren’t married to your blazer, if the evening event is super casual you can always forgo the blazer and leave it in the office.
*Tip: Keep a statement necklace or earrings at work, it’s an easy way to dress something up.
One of the biggest problems a girl faces when wearing a dress or skirt to work is that it’s hard to find a balance between office appropriate and girls night out. This can be especially tricky if you have an event to go to later that day that is a little more upscale.
Day: Comfort is key, when working in an office all day. Knee length dresses or skirts are appropriate for almost all situations and are the easiest to find when shopping. For a day look, throw on a scarf, minimalistic watch and a pair of classic pumps or booties. A scarf helps to make it casual without a ton of effort.
Night: For transitioning to night ditch the scarf, and add a cute belt and sophisticated pair of earrings for an effortless way to bring your day dress to a night time event. The best part of wearing a dress is that you will most likely already be wearing heels, so bringing along an extra pair isn’t necessary.
*Tip: Mixed metals can add some fun to an outfit but are more casual, for a formal event stick with either all gold or all silver jewelry.
Casual Office Wear
Let’s be real, not all offices are business casual especially in an industry as creative as PR. Some of us are lucky enough to roll into the office in our favourite band tee and a pair of ripped jeans. This is all fun and games until we’re asked to attend an event afterwork. For most of us this would mean lugging around a bag big enough for a three day getaway, filled with different shoes and outfit options. Or risk being the only girl in the office dressed up that day.
Day: Keeping is simple and casual is easy, a great pair of jeans and a tee shirt will take you far, but since most events are last minute this can make dressing your outfit up a little tricky.
Night: If you’ve been paying attention to any of the other tips in this blog you will remember that keeping a pair of heels, a statement necklace and even a fun blazer or jacket, are your key pieces to dressing up your outfit. These same tips apply to casual office wear. The more prepared you are with extra items in the office the less you will have to drag around with you on any given day.
Now that we’ve loaded your brain with information, the key things to remember are: (1) almost any outfit can be elevated with a jacket, (2) accessories are pivotal parts in changing any outfit, and (3) keep a pair of classic heels at the office. Keep these things in mind a you are good to go for any unexpected event or dinner that may pop up.
Everyone has their own travel essentials. Some would never hop on a plane without their camera while others wouldn’t leave their house without a neck pillow and the latest Cosmo magazine. Oscar Wilde says he never travels without his diary … BUT we say never travel without your best girls.
There’s nothing quite like a good girl squad to make for the perfect vacation. Between rooming with your besties, having your meals prepared for you, being served frozen cocktails and staying up way past your bedtime to dance the night away, the ultimate girls getaway can cure almost anything.
There’s a lot of thought and planning that goes into any great trip. To avoid disagreements we’ve compiled some tips to keep in mind when planning the ultimate girls’ getaway for the best girls’ weekend yet!
It’s critical to make sure the group you’re going with gets along (at least for the most part). Nothing will ruin a trip faster than two frenemies hashing it out when you’re sharing rooms. Sometimes, the smaller the group the better; it’s easier to commit with a small group of a few good friends who genuinely care about each other rather than going with a big group who are competing to get what they want.
Decide what you want from the vacation:
It’s also important to make sure that everyone who is going has a similar goal in mind or has similar interests so there will be minimal disagreements, not only on your vacation, but in the planning process beforehand. Do you want to have your meals prepared by some of the best chefs in the world for the perfect Instagram photo opp? Do you want to go on adventures and party until the sun comes up or would you prefer peace and quiet? Do you want a little bit of both? Whatever your preference is for your trip, make sure everyone has a say to avoid anyone feeling left out.
Unless you travel regularly, a trip is usually a special occasion. Since everyone on the trip is going to be saving a lot of their hard-earned cash to go away, it’s important to consider everyone’s thoughts, feelings and preferences around the destination, airline and hotel. Although you might not necessarily all get exactly what you want every time, a little give and take never hurt anyone and is crucial for a successful trip.
Do your research :
Be prepared and do your research on where you are going, how your getting there, where you will be staying and everything in between! Google when the best time of year is to visit, when hurricane season is, hotels, restaurants and bar reviews, must-see places, excursions, customs (whether to tip your bartender and how much is expected), etc. Although the Internet can be particularly useful for seeking answers, it wouldn’t hurt to use a few different platforms such as travel agencies and social networks to see what previous travellers think you should know before embarking on your next journey. Some of our favourite go-to travel sites are DK Eyewitness Travel and Travelzoo which covers the latest travel news and deals.
Plan, but don’t marry your plan:
Some of us would have no problem getting on a plane tomorrow with a backpack and no set plan, while for others, they have already planned out tomorrow’s outfit. While it’s certainly important to be organized for your adventure, it’s also important to be flexible, especially in a group. Imagine “subject to change” is stamped across your itinerary so you don’t feel bad about missing your 8 a.m. snorkeling session for a late brunch with the girls. Although planning a group trip may seem stressful at times, keep in mind, the purpose of this trip is to have fun and take a break from the stresses of everyday life. Try to enjoy every moment, from chaotic to-do lists to foreign airports, because memories come from the least expected adventures of the trip.
With so many personal and social platforms like Instagram and Pinterest, it’s no surprise that LinkedIn isn’t the most popular social network. However, what if we told you that by simply sprucing up your LinkedIn profile, you could make an incredible first impression on some of the greatest business influencers in the city? What if we told you there were five simple ways to be exposed to hundreds of amazing job opportunities every day?
Here are some key ways to improve your LinkedIn profile:
1) The photo
Profile pictures have been used since the MSN days, as well as MySpace, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and more. Although some photos may be acceptable across these platforms, we must consider LinkedIn as a professional account. While it isn’t necessary to dig out your grade twelve prom dress for your profile photo, we do suggest choosing a business casual outfit that you might wear to an interview. Once you’ve chosen the right outfit, stand against a plain background, whether it’s a light or brick wall, and don’t forget to say cheese! It’s been proven that smiling with your teeth will make you look more approachable and trustworthy.
2) Make a clever bio and summary
Most visitors to your profile will decide if they’re going to continue scrolling after the first or second sentence. As a PR or communications professional, you understand the importance of writing, so use this time to shine. You can still be descriptive and witty, but this is your time to highlight critical details about yourself. Just because you don’t have a lot of experience in your field quite yet does not mean you have no experience at all. Think back to all of your part-time, full-time and volunteer jobs leading up to this point. What might be relevant to what you want to do in the future?
Example 1: Jack Smith, PR pro.
Example 2: Jack Smith, Entry level PR pro with five years of hospitality, event planning and volunteer experience.
Your summary should include what your next steps might be, your interests, skill set, goals and areas of expertise. This is a summary of who you are, so try to make it a reflection of you, one that will stand out in the minds of your readers.
3) Proofread, proofread, proofread
Proofread, proofread, proofread. This one cannot be stressed enough. Nothing ruins your credibility faster than a simple grammatical error or a spelling mistake, almost all of which could have been avoided simply by reading your paragraphs out loud. If you know you’re not the best at editing take the time to have someone else look it over. You’ll be much better off when you do.
4) Consistency is key
When writing your job descriptions, make sure you’re using a similar layout while using a variety of words. For example, if you want to use bullet points instead of paragraphs, use bullet points under each job title to describe what you did in that role. Although it’s easy to get caught in the same patterns when writing similar sentences, remember to change up your wording. This will keep your readers engaged.
5) Update regularly
It can be easy to forget job titles or daily tasks once you’re no longer in that role. Update your LinkedIn profile on a regular basis by plugging in this information as you go. Be sure to get credit for your hard work.
It’s no surprise that it can be hard to find a great job your qualified for, and will love, especially if you’re coming straight out of college or university. It’s important to be able to showcase your experiences, abilities and personal brand in the best possible light, so that if an opportunity (or dream job) arises, you’ll be a first choice candidate.
As February flies by and we start to think about spring, it’s not surprising that most of us have already fallen off the New Year’s resolution bandwagon, we promised we’d stick to this year. Have no fear, it happens to the best of us. There’s something about a new year, the fresh starts and the new goals, which encourages the idea of bettering ourselves with a new hobby or ditching a bad habit. The unfortunate this is we tend to make these plans or goals based on the time of year rather than based on our own desire or willingness to change. Not to worry- it’s never too late to show yourself some love.
Whether your goal for 2017 is to lose weight or save up for your first house, we have created a guide for our readers who want to ensure 2017 can still be their best year yet.
1) Get back to your roots
As we grow older, many of us lose sight of our hobbies and interests that seemed so important to us growing up. It’s important to not only know what makes you happy, but to keep that a priority in your life. You can get back to those roots by taking some time to rediscover what you love. When was the last time you played soccer, or picked up a guitar, or danced to something other than the Top 40 they played at the bar last Friday night? Try to channel your inner child, the one you were before you become a ‘responsible adult.’ When you find out what really makes you forget about your responsibilities for a minute, you’ll rediscover a happiness within you that you may have forgotten you even had.
2) The Power of No
Saying “no” is something a lot of us struggle with. Whether it’s saying no to after work drinks with friends,or saying no to your co-worker who has asked you to finish their media report for the third week in a row, saying no once in a while can really benefit your mental health, straighten out your priorities and have a positive impact on your overall wellbeing. It’s important not to think of this as rude or inconsiderate, but rather giving yourself what you know you want and need. For example saying no to those afterwork drinks because you really to want to unwind and catch up on Scandal, or knowing that doing your co-worker’s work is not really getting you any further in you position. By not committing to plans you never really wanted in the first place, you will feel significantly less stressed and have more time to do and focus on the things that you truly want to do.
3)Do something you’ve always wanted to
At the beginning of the year, people are filled with optimism and have a tendency to list all these new things they’re going to try. The reality is 90% of the list is rarely ever looked at throughout the year. Think about how long you’ve wanted to travel to Thailand, or how many years you’ve considered taking up boxing. Now think of how many times you’ve ever come close to acting upon it. To make 2017 a year you’ll never forget, think less and do more. We suggest picking one activity, club, event, trip or hobby that you would like to do in 2017- and working towards it. Whether it’s knitting or salsa lessons, trying something new, and working at it, will give you a sense of accomplishment and excitement to start your year off right.
4) Drink less
We all enjoy the occasional (or daily) glass of wine at the end of a stressful day to take the edge off. However, what many people forget is that alcohol is a depressant, causing fluctuations in our moods, especially during the winter months. People also tend to forget that alcohol is high in calories and sugar, not to mention a costly luxury. If you have any plans to lose some weight and getting in shape this year, or even save for that house, the key may be to cutting down your alcohol intake. This isn’t to say that you should set an unrealistic goal to cut out alcohol completely, but it certainly wouldn’t hurt you or your bank account to stay in once and awhile. There is various benefits mentally, financially and physically to cut back on this daily habit.
5) A little gratitude goes a long way
If you read any books or articles on positivity and happiness, they will often discuss the importance of practicing gratitude. A positive daily habit to get into, before starting your day, is to simply write down or say out loud at least one thing you are thankful for each day. Specialists suggest this trains your brain to focus on positives rather than negatives, surely promising a brighter, more optimistic year for anyone who does it.
6) Take a break from social
Most of us have been so consumed by social and digital media for the last ten years or so, changing the way we socialize. Although it might not feel like it at the time, too much social media intake can have a negative toll on our mental health. We are increasingly sacrificing our face time with our close friends and family for our Instagram and Twitter feeds. We suggest choosing one day a week, or maybe every month, when you turn off your cell phone and leave all your social networks, texts, memes and emails for the following day. Use this time to catch up with an old friend, take a walk downtown or in the park, visit your family, read that book that’s been sitting on your shelf for months, maybe people watch or go to the gym (no flexing snapchats today, sorry!). Balancing your time and energy will keep you more in touch with the world and people around you. You’ll be surprised with how fresh you’ll feel.
7) Baby steps
Healthy eating is the most talked about New Year’s resolution, with growing health food stores and whole restaurants dedicated to bettering your diet, you would think it’s an easy resolution to stick to. If you’re like the rest of us and had fallen off the healthy food bandwagon halfway through January, not to fret; there is an easier solution to quitting your love affair with junk food. Start with your normal diet and change one meal or snack a week to a healthier alternative, like carrots and hummus instead of all dressed chips. Or try ordering a bottle of water instead of a beer at lunch. The following week, try to change two snacks or meals. Gradually, you’ll start to look and feel healthier without cutting out everything you know and love at once.
Instead of beating yourself up for not sticking to your 2017 New Year’s resolutions, take this time to ground yourself, find out what motivates you and be patient with yourself. By gradually changing up your everyday routine to better yourself and meet your goals, 2017 will surely be your best year yet.
What are your resolutions and how are you sticking to them?
If anyone understands the importance of time management it’s a Public Relations professional. PR like many other professions are quickly jumping on the tech bandwagon for it’s innovative and time-saving benefits. Today there is virtually an app for every task you can imagine. Whether you are trying to quickly pitch a client to a major news source, plan a meeting, save a media clipping or simply just looking for a new contact the tech world has no shortage of tools for you to use. We’ve compiled a list of our favourite apps for your personal and professional life that work!
Slack is a business communicator for teams. The app is easy to install on android and Apple products and best yet it’s FREE! Create to-do lists and share them with team members, assign roles and easily call, email or text anyone on the team right from the app. The app also allows teams to integrate and edit documents in Google Drive, Dropbox Twitter and more.
Upitch is an app designed to help Public Relations practitioners pitch ideas and stories to media. Easily upload a concise pitch through the desktop or mobile app and wait for the media to swipe right to open a chat between you and the journalist. Users can also browse through other pitches for a little inspiration.
Every PR pro knows that keeping up to date with current events and trending topics can be a little overwhelming at times. Like Twitter’s “trending” section, Nuzzle allows users to get personalized news recommendations and top news stories shared by friends right to their phone. (This app is also free!)
LinkedIn is a holy grail app for all PR professionals. The app allows you to post informative content about the industry, search for job posting, connect with others in your field and grow your network on a virtual platform. LinkedIn is also great for keeping in touch with classmates and old co-workers without having to filter through the clutter that comes with Facebook.
We’ve all been task with sifting through the newspaper in search of a new contact, new product, or to collect a media clipping at least once in our careers, once you find what you were looking what do you do? CamScanner allows you to take a picture of the article or text and save it to your phone as a PDF. This is vital for PR professional as we can’t always be shuffling papers around with us. Once the PDF is saved you can easily send it in an email or text message right from your phone.
Somewhere between school and adulthood, Valentine’s Day went from a highly anticipated event where each student distributed personalized, hand-written Scooby-Doo cards, to a day that is increasingly dreaded by people (coupled and single) all over the world. If you’re in a relationship, this is often a day spent waiting in long lines outside of crowded restaurants and spending too much money while your bank account is still trying to recover from the holidays. On the other hand, if you’re single at this time of year, you’re probably sick of your friends setting you up on blind dates or your mom consistently asking if you’ve met someone yet. If you’re flying solo this Valentine’s Day, we’ve compiled the ultimate V-Day playlist to get you through it and maybe even fall in love with February 14 all over again.
All Time Low – Job Bellion
Complicated – Avril Lavigne
Dance Floor Anthem – Good Charlotte
Dancing on My Own– Robyn
Don’t Wait – Mapei (Chance the Rapper)
Fake Love – Drake
Feeling Myself – Nicki Minaj & Beyonce
Flawless – Beyonce
Gives You Hell – The All American Rejects
Got It – Marian Hill
It’s My Life – Bon Jovi
Lady Friend – Chance the Rapper
Living Single – Big Sean
Love Yourself x Roses – Justin Bieber & The Chainsmokers
Move Along – The All American Rejects
My Happy Ending – Avril Lavigne
Needed Me – Rihanna
Never Gonna Get Me Back – Alysha Brilla
Nobody – Alysha Brilla
No Type – Rae Sremmurd
Party Monster – The Weeknd
Pour It Up – Rihanna
Roar – Katy Perry
Single ladies – Beyonce
Shake It Off – Taylor Swift
Still Waiting – Sum 41
Take Care – Drake & Rihanna
Too Good – Drake & Rihanna
Two Steps Ahead – Alessia Cohle
We Are Never Getting Back Together – Taylor Swift
No matter what your plans are for February 14, be sure to spread some love. Whether it’s your significant other, grandparents, parents, best friends or colleagues, the world can always use a little more love.
Did we forget something? We want to hear what will be on your 2017 Valentine’s playlist!
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