As news of college graduations hits the headlines, I can’t help but reminisce on my last days of college: cramming for exams, late-night food runs and graduation parties. When I left Widener University with big ideas for my future, I knew that securing my first “real job” was not going to be an easy task. In most cases, the ideal job isn’t always immediately available, and interviewing can be an emotional rollercoaster for anyone – especially young 20-somethings. Needless to say, that first job can help determine your career path.
Today, I’m on the opposite side of the spectrum, reviewing countless resumes and meeting new college grads. I’m starting to grasp that the hiring process is not an exact science. I understand that staffing-up an account or project team appropriately is vital to the success of any public relations (PR) and marketing program. Here are a few important considerations to keep in mind when building the best team for the job:
Experience and Skill Sets
It’s safe to say that experience and skill sets are two of the most imperative attributes when considering a perspective hire, because you want to insure that the candidate has the skills to handle the job at hand, along with the experience necessary to make the team’s or the organization’s life a little easier. Oftentimes, qualifications are the things that determine next steps with the candidate (getting to the interview).
It’s also important to take an inventory of your current team’s skill sets. Do you have a media maven, strategic thinker and writing guru? If so, you probably don’t need another candidate that brings those qualities to the table. Every team needs a well-rounded and complementary skill set, from the organizers to leaders and creative masterminds – everyone on the team plays an essential role.
I’m always eager to see if you’re a fit for the work environment and someone I want to see and work with every day. That’s why I ask questions like, “What do you do in your spare time?” and “What’s your favorite restaurant?” I’m trying to figure out whether you’ll be a good fit for the team. In all reality, you spend more time with co-workers than your family – especially with agency life – so “fit” is definitely a deciding factor.
Clients hire an agency not just for their expertise, but also for their compatibility. Many agencies will hire employees simply for their potential to be a good fit with a client. Let’s face it, at times, account managers work more closely with their clients than with their co-workers, given the weekly meetings, regular visits to each other’s facilities, sharing of materials and constant communication. Simply stated, the client and agency work best when there’s good chemistry.
This seems like a given, but selecting a candidate who’s professional goes a long way. Just think about the interview: Did they stand up and greet you? Give a firm handshake? Dress the part? All of this matters, because their professional etiquette will eventually reflect on your business and your team.
Building a successful account team is an art and at Domus, Inc., we pride ourselves on selecting the best-of-the-best to join our agency and to support our clients’ needs.
Amber Lutz is a Senior Account Manager at Domus, Inc., a marketing communications agency based in Philadelphia. For more information, visit http://www.domusinc.com. For new business inquiries, please contact CEO and founder of Domus, Inc. Betty Tuppeny at email@example.com or 215-772-2805.