Building on connections & community in 2016

By Meghann Craig, President

Meghann Craig is President of Cincinnati PRSA.

Meghann Craig is President of Cincinnati PRSA.

Within the first two months of serving as president of PRSA’s Cincinnati chapter I’ve had a lot of fruitful discussions with our local members and national leaders. In January we heard from National PRSA CEO Joseph Truncale, Ph.D., CAE, and Chair Mark McClennan, APR, to talk about the public relations industry in 2016, and how PRSA National will help its members stay up-to-date in this ever-changing industry. You can read more about this session here.

In addition, we’ve dedicated our February programming to a series of informal coffee talks around the Cincinnati area. It’s been wonderful to connect with members and hear candid feedback about what they want out of their PRSA membership. It’s also been really inspiring to meet with so many non-members and have the chance to share my personal experiences with PRSA and why I have loved being part of this unique organization. Some of you may be wondering what’s in store for 2016 … and I’m excited to share our key focus areas for the year. 

Build a stronger sense of community  

When I think back on why I initially got involved with PRSA it all stems back to the people, camaraderie and mentorship I experienced as a young professional. I was a member of PRSSA in college and immediately joined my local chapter upon graduation. There’s no better feeling than walking into a room of welcoming people that all understand the pain points of your day job and are all willing to lend an ear, a piece of advice or new opportunity. My goal for this year is to make sure that everyone who walks into a PRSA event feels this sense of community. 

Provide more inspiration and excitement  

Let’s face it. This gig can be really tough. However, it can also be really exciting and rewarding. Sometimes we need to be reminded of that. Inspiration can come from a case study, a how-to tutorial on a new trend or technology platform or even a rockstar performance like Roddy Chong’s April 2014 program. We are committed to ensuring our programming is delivering inspiration, excitement and education to members throughout the year. We’re working with our neighboring chapters to help bring in speakers while tapping some of our local talent. 

More accessible mentorship opportunities

I learned early on in my career that people are usually willing to help you out and lend their advice, but you have to be the one to initiate it. I believe this still rings true. However, for some it can be hard to initiate that first step. We have a very dedicated Leadership team that is always willing to offer advice, words of encouragement, and share their professional experiences. In addition we’ll be setting up more coffee talks in the summer and looking into speed networking sessions at coming events. We’re also working on building stronger ties with local universities and being a resource for PRSSA members. 

If you’re wondering how you can be more involved in PRSA and make the most out of your membership I encourage you to explore joining one of our committees. This is a great way to build meaningful relationships and learn from other PR professionals.