Why PR pros and rock stars aren't that different after all

When I heard Cincinnati PRSA snagged Roddy Chong as our April speaker, I was thrilled. A phenomenal performer and motivational speaker, Roddy promised to motivate and inspire our members to reach new personal and professional heights... just as he has for big brands like Boeing, Kraft Foods and Bayer. But I wondered: What does a rock star have in common with a PR pro, and how can I justify spending time away from my desk to attend this luncheon?

As it turns out, our worlds aren't so different after all.

In fact, Roddy is pretty familiar with the underlying characteristic that every PR person has in common. It's a little thing he likes to call the scrappy factor. (I've always referred to it as the crazy factor, but I think I like Roddy's description, better!) The scrappy factor is inherent to our profession: our ability to do more with less, surmount crazy deadlines, embrace new technology and adapt to an ever-changing communications landscape.

In Roddy's estimation, the scrappy factor is what connects performance phenoms and violin virtuosos with the big thinkers and doers in the PR world. And harnessing the power of the scrappy factor is what can lead to big-time productivity.

Roddy is going to share with Cincinnati PRSA the ins and outs of the scrappy factor, and how we in the industry can use his scrappy factor secrets to accomplish more and be more effective. Secrets from a world-class superstar that can help me be more productive and effective? Sounds like a smart reason to step away from the office for an hour.

But don't just take my word for it. One of our members took the time to share this with our planning committee:

"I met Roddy after seeing him perform in TSO and saw him speak at Duke Energy Center last year. His keynote is incredibly engaging and genuine. I find myself applying a lot of the lessons he shared in my everyday life and think this would be really valuable to attend.

Specifically, I found some of his audition stories to be really inspiring especially when he talked about having to overcome some tricky situations when unexpected curve balls were thrown. How many times have we found ourselves in similar situations in a pitch, company presentation, etc.? 

Plus, it's not every day that you can say that you're one degree away from Celine Dion and Shania Twain."

Welcoming a truly spectacular performing to our chapter isn't the only exciting aspect of our April meeting. Roddy's program kicks off PRSA's annual Pro-Am Day, during which we will pair our members with PR and communications majors for a half-day job shadowing experience. It will be a great way for our members to identify entry-level talent, help students get some hands-on experience and mentor the next generation of professionals... not to mention an opportunity for our members to show students the scrappy factor at work!

I hope you'll join me for Roddy Chong's presentation and for Pro-Am Day on Friday, April 11. There are still a few tickets and shadow spots available, but space is limited.Please RSVP today.

Written by: Lauren Doyle, President, Cincinnati PRSA