Thank You, PR Heroes

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It’s 10:57 p.m. on a Thursday. You just put your kids down to bed. You also want to go to bed, but first, you need to review the materials for tomorrow’s new business presentation. 

News alerts keep popping up about shifts in mask mandates. You don’t know if you’re taking your kids to school tomorrow or keeping them home — you’re emotionally all over the place.

It’s been nearly two years since the pandemic started. And, despite all the challenges we’ve faced, I’ve never been prouder to be part of this family of PR professionals.

I’ve heard from so many of you facing scenarios like these and the following:

  • You’re telling your colleagues you must drop off the conference call so you can drive you and your family to get tested for COVID, but not before begging them to schedule a mental day off for themselves.
  • Your electrician is coming over to turn your closet into a home office, so you take your 10:00 a.m. call in your child’s playroom while helping them set up their Lego set. 
  • You’re in your pajamas, filing for your business license online, launching your first public relations consultancy, all while calling your parents to make sure they are feeling OK after taking their COVID-19 vaccine earlier that day.
  • You’re pacing in your apartment, trying to understand a confusing response from your manager on how to update a blog post draft, distracted by what seems like minute-to-minute emergency alerts on the cable news channels you need to follow for your job. 
  • You’re on your laptop at the dining room table, working with your executives on messaging that must be delivered strategically, ethically, accurately, and timely to your employees; tens of thousands of corporate and front-line workers who need to know about remote work, COVID-19, and other policies that will impact their life indefinitely. 
  • You’re baking a batch of blueberry muffins in the kitchen, covered in flour while trying to process how to respond to the fifth request this week to make a corporate video go “viral.” 
  • You’re feeding your newborn their first solid foods while reviewing the seventh version of “that” press release because the spokesperson wants to “uplevel their quote” (whatever that means).
  • You’re graduating from college, disappointed about having to spend graduation day in front of a laptop but eager to host as many informational interviews as you can until you land your first job and launch your career.
  • You’re managing your school’s Facebook page, responding to frustrated parents who want answers on COVID mandates. Answers that you want as well.
  • You’re trying to process the loss of a loved one who recently passed away while keeping your cool as you prepare to host an important press conference.

I’ve never been prouder to be a part of this collective of trusted advisers.

Thank you for all your thoughtful and dedicated work through a turbulent time. 

Most of all, you have done so with a level of empathy and humility that is truly inspiring. 

You deserve a sweet treat or three and a little time off this holiday season. Just don’t forget to sweat a little in-between your meetings, OK?

It’s been an honor serving as the Workplace Wellness columnist again this year. I look forward to seeing you in 2022! 

May you and your families have a safe, happy and blessed holiday season. 

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