Flourishing Your Local New Pros Chapter

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Being responsible for building your local New Pros committee or Chapter is not an easy task. In addition to your job responsibilities and launching your career in the PR world, you’ve intentionally chosen to pile more on to your plate. The good news is that you’re not the only one solely accountable for your group’s success – well, you shouldn’t be, anyways. Most likely you have a team of like-minded individuals working towards a shared goal of flourishing your New Pros chapter. And if you find yourself as the lone leader, then … recruit, recruit, recruit!

Here are some lessons learned from PRSA Charlotte New Professionals and a few ideas on how to flourish your New Pros Chapter:

Get on the same page

How are you going to connect with fellow New Pros if you don’t know their interests? At the end of each year, implement a survey that will help you plan and organize for the upcoming year. Ask questions about what topics and programming interests them, what expectations they have of the group and what changes they want to see to help everyone get on the same page.

Schedule mind-blowing programming

ENOUGH with the socials! We all miss college, but the days of hosting all your events at a bar are over. Somewhere along the way, our group found ourselves socializing more than learning. It’s great to host a networking social every now and then, but don’t be afraid to get a little crazy with your programming.  You’ll find success in diversifying your events and mixing in educational programs that are targeted to your group’s needs. If you have dedicated members, they’ll want to learn and grow just as much as they want to network. If you haven’t tried this approach, give it a shot.

Encourage attendance at PRSA programs

It can be terrifying for a new member, especially those fresh out of college, to attend programs and events hosted by their local PRSA chapter. Yes, those highly experienced, well known, senior PR pros are intimidating to all of us who aspire to be just like them one day. But, those are the individuals you should want to be affiliated with. Encourage members to attend Chapter events and work the room. Network with everyone and make sure they know that the New Pros are worth watching. Plus, you can get ideas and speakers for your next group event.

These are some of the ways we have connected with our new pros in Charlotte. What programs have you found to be successful?

Jessica_Ernstberger_HeadshotJessica  Ernstberger currently works as an administrative coordinator for Carolina Public Relations, a Chernoff Newman company, where she aids senior level practitioners for each active client.  She serves on the PRSA Charlotte New Professional’s board, she’s on the communications committee for the chapter and served on the communications team for the 2014 Southeast District Conference in April.
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