Tuesday, December 6, 2016

The Importance of Joining IABC or CPRS in your PR Career

When entering a profession such as Public Relations, it is important to take advantage of every resource at your reach.  Fortunately in PR, there are many resources at reach; two in particular are International Association of Business Communicators commonly known as IABC and the Canadian Public Relations Society that is shortened to CPRS. 
Each organization holds its own benefits for young professionals or recent graduates seeking a career in Public Relations.  They cater to students in many ways, which can benefit the start of you career as well as helping you throughout the length of your career. 

The Difference Between IABC and CPRS
The IABS is a network of business professionals with expands globally around the world in 70 countries. Whose purpose is to improve networking, communication and career growth and development.  This organization includes not only PR professionals, but expands to Marketers, Advertisers and other positions in the business profession.  The organization holds conferences and events all throughout the world as well in its own local chapters. 
CPRS is similar to IABC, however the organization specifically caters to only Public Relations professionals, and is limited to professionals in Canada.  The organization connects PR professionals on a National level, compared to the IABC who communicates globally.  The organization consists of 14 member societies all throughout major cities in the country.  The purpose of the organization is to advance the overall profession of Public Relations by regulating the profession to protect and benefit the public’s interest.  The organization holds many networking and professional development events that are available for its members.
Each organization has an annually fee that it requires its members to subscribe too.  However, both societies offer a subsidised fee for students in the profession. 

There are many benefits of joining an organization such as IABC and CPRS, one of the most important and effective benefits of these organizations are the networking opportunities it provides.  Networking is particularly important in the beginning of your career.  In public relations, many positions are received through recommendations and references before they are even posted as vacant positions.  This networking can lead to a referral or even a reference for a position that could be vacant.  Networking can also expose you to many learning opportunities.  As young professionals who lack experience and knowledge in the PR field, speaking with experienced professionals can provide us with insight in the profession, which could provide us with the tools and knowledge that may be required to enter the field such as tips for seeking employment in the field.  Many professionals keep in touch with those they network with in the beginning of their career.  It is common for many professionals in the field to have mentors, which can be obtained through networking at the events held by the organizations. 

Professional Development
IABC and CPRS offer many opportunities for young professionals to gain experience and knowledge through networking events and workshops they offer.  An example of one being the Student Networking event held by CPRS where experienced professionals would preach to PR students the importance of networking in the field and tips as to how to network effectively.  Student positions and volunteer positions are available within the organizations such as student representative positions and the opportunities to volunteer at the events they hold.  The volunteer positions that are offered to young professionals stand out on their resumes when applying for jobs, for both organizations are highly respected in the PR field. 
After gaining experience in the field and becoming a respected professional, IABC and CPRS still hold value to your career.  Both societies offer professional development events and workshops for their members, which allow them to refresh their skills and keep up with current and developing trends in the field.  

For more information on the organizations you can visit the their websites or watch these two videos!

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