Friday, January 25, 2013

An Attuitude of Gratitude

What a week! Telling you about it would require a lot of effort, and well... it's Friday, who has time for that? ;) As my days become more and more packed, I've realized how thankful I am for each opportunity. Although from time to time, I forget how lucky I am. Training my mind to re-focus on what I have always helps and today I'm going to make a list of things I'm thankful for!

In no particular order:

1. Long winter jackets

2. My memory foam mattress pad

3. Chocolate chips

4. A college education in Minnesota

5. My sparkly wrist watch

6. My parent’s commitment to each other

7. The heater in my room

8. The Word

9. Carbonated drinks

10. Lisi Arnstrom ~ My partner in crime!

11. Refreshing conversations with total strangers

12. My church ~ I'm blessed, encouraged, and challenged

13. My wonderful girlfriends!

14. Guy friends that are respected men, not unaccountable boys

15. My ability to Tweet at famous people like Jared Allen. The Internet is crazy cool

16. Little kids that cuddle and jump on me when we play

17. My car ~ I love singing my lungs out when I'm alone

18. Dogs ~ Their loving companionship

19. A dad who I aspire to be like

20. My sales and marketing job at the Minnesota Daily

21. When my friend's parents consider me as their own

22. BIG coffee mugs

23. Friends and family who believe in me and tell me they do

24. Action movies ~ They are to me, as the Notebook is for other women.

25. My older siblings ~ I see them experience things before me, and I learn from them

26. Live in a state that has professional football, baseball, basketball, and hockey

27. My house ~ Growing up and going to school with my siblings

28. The Evergreen Bloomington years..

29. Gymnastics ~ Where I could release my adrenaline

30. My new gym membership ~ YEAH!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Starbuck's $7 Cup of Joe

Every time I go to Starbucks or Caribou to buy a holiday drink, I die a little inside. Why do I feel this way? Because I'm paying $5 for a tall white chocolate mocha non-fat with whip. I know my bank account doesn't appreciate the purchase either. In order to save some money, I brew my own or I buy the regular stuff like my dad. Just when you thought coffee couldn't get anymore expensive, it did. Starbucks has introduced its most expensive blend. The Costa Rican Finca Palmilera coffee will cost customers up to $7 per cup.

While I won't deny my own need for coffee, I question why Americans are obsessed with it? Sure it has caffeine, but why are we willing to pay so much for it?

In one of my classes, we learned about consumers as social beings. These people make their purchases based on social status. There are thousands of people who are addicted to Starbucks and are loyal to the brand and find meaning in their consumption and their membership. So my real question is, are Starbuck's enthusiasts consumers based solely on the quality of the coffee? Or is it based on a belonging?

I have several coffee suave friends who might disagree with me, but Starbucks has made itself a trustworthy brand that is passionate for more than coffee. They've supported causes for creating jobs and helping children. They pull their customers in with their coffee, but also their philanthropy. Now it's all a matter of if those brand loyalists will stay committed through this price hike. Do you think Starbucks will actually make a profit? Or will the $7 cup of joe plunder?

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Intimidation No More

Intimidation is a word that is all too familiar to me right now. Schooling, interning, working, and networking have all intensified since I started college. Unfortunately, so has my intimidation to the business world. Normally, I’m an easy going person who enjoys meeting new people, but occasionally I succumb to the unknown.

This past Thursday, I attended my first real networking event called the Alphabet Bash. Thankfully, I went with my older brother who I used as a crutch when I first arrived!

These are the people my dad works with and the people I’m going to work with someday too. My initial instinct was to act like a fly on the wall, but that won’t get you anywhere in this business.

It is so easy to over analyze a situation and having my brother there made me feel protected from the professional world and made it easy for me to just watch. It wasn’t until I met Emily and Chris that I decided to branch out of my bubble. I’m so grateful Chris introduced me to his Father, Doug Spong, the President of Carmicheal Lynch Spong. I will forever remember that conversation and the boost of confidence it gave me.

During the event, my new friend Emily and I wandered to tables around the party and sparked up several quality conversations. I’ll be completely honest, I don’t know a lot about the PR lingo, but I still asked questions and picked people’s brains. No matter what career you have, learning from a professional in your field will do way more for you than reading a book in your classroom. Despite your intimidation or your fear of meeting a President or CEO of a multimillion dollar company, you must look past yourself and build the courage to approach them and build connections and relationships.

My experience at the Alphabet Bash prepared me for my upcoming career and the importance of being diligent in seeking out professionals and eliminating intimidation. Often times our generation feels privileged and entitled when it comes to acquiring a job, but you need to go out and work for it.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Putting the Wonderful World of Web to Use

Lets face it, getting a job right after college is quite the challenge. While we think the hiring process is completely out of our hands, it’s not. Digital credibility and branding are both key components when a company is recruiting you for their business. Yes, we need to build our resumes and network, but we also need to present ourselves well on the web. In today’s time, the Internet is one of the most influential mediums out there. It’s guaranteed that the company you applied for is inserting your name into the Google search bar to see if you fit their criteria. What are some ways we can achieve social media dominance? Lets start with the basics.

1.Designate your personal social media accounts from your professional media accounts. → My Twitter is used as my professional social media outlet, while my Facebook is more personal. One rule I go by is to keep Twitter 80% professional and 20% personal. Future employers want to see how you handle yourself and information on a regular basis, but they also want to see who you are as a person. Make it your own, but make boundaries for yourself. My Facebook is set to private, so only my close friends and family can see what I post, unlike my Twitter account.

2.Brand your professional account. → Once you’ve decided the area of work you want to pursue, use it as a tool to grab people’s attention. A personal brand influences and targets a specific audience. Companies want people who are passionate about their business and are interested in hiring those who like what they’re doing.

3.Offer information that is important and valuable. → The more important your post, tweet or blog is, the more you will command an employer’s attention. Nobody wants to here you complain about miniscule things, like how your cat got sick.

4.Don’t want your boss to see it? Don’t post it. Period. → It’s surprising how many people forget how public the Internet is. Do you hate your job so much you want to Tweet about it? Think twice. I’ve heard too many stories of people getting fired because they didn’t know their boss could see the post.

5.Go out and make connections, don’t wait for them to come to you. → Once you get back from a networking event or dinner with a professional, don’t wait for them to contact you. Get on Twitter and start communicating with them. Connections are key in today’s job market.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Kellogg's Gymnastics Tour Coming to Minneapolis

The Summer Olympics are just around the corner and several competitions will take place. Once the champions are crowned and everyone returns home, several local gymnastics clubs will see enrollment numbers skyrocket with new gymnasts who are passionate about becoming an Olympian.

One Olympic gymnast who achieved that status is coming to the Twin Cities to help encourage young gymnasts, sign autographs, and promote an upcoming event.

Chellise Memmel, a 2008 Olympic Team Silver Medalist and 2005 World All-Around champion, is visiting three local gymnastics clubs in Minnesota to help promote the upcoming Kellogg’s Tour of Gymnastics Champions. Memmel will be among the cast that will perform during the Minneapolis Show.

The tour is set to take place at the Target Center on October 11, 2012, at 7:00 p.m.

The tour will include members of the men’s and women’s 2011 World Championships and 2012 Olympic teams, along with past Olympians and U.S. medalists in men’s, women’s, rhythmic and acrobatic gymnastics and trampoline and tumbling. The cast will also be joined by several local gymnasts from clubs around the area.

**A piece I wrote for

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Spring Update

Spring semester is wrapping up and it has been both exciting and busy! Our Philanthropy team just wrapped up 60Kday at the University of Minnesota! We partnered with the Habitat for Humanity student group and held a fundraiser in hopes to raise $60,000 for a family to receive a new home! Our event took place in front of Coffman Union on April 12. Several committee members from each student group rallied together and encouraged students, groups, and faculty to donate towards 60Kday! Once a person donated, they received an “I Donated!” sticker that served as a coupon at local restaurants and stores around campus! Our philanthropy team was responsible for creating awareness around the university by various advertising techniques like writing on sidewalks and whiteboards around campus! We also worked with local businesses to see if they would be willing to donate gifts. The Philanthropy team had a great time working together on this project! The team was great and I loved working with them! They all had great attitudes and were fun to be around! As PRSSA comes to a close this spring, I am excited to announce I was elected Account Executive for next year! I also have several interviews for some internships this summer! Keep those fingers crossed!

Monday, March 26, 2012

UMN PRSSA Philanthropy News

The Philanthropy team had the wonderful opportunity to meet with the Director of Community Relations for the Minnesota Twins last month. Bryan Donaldson took some time out of his busy schedule and gave a tour of the ballpark and shared what he does on a daily basis. Like some of us at PRSSA, Bryan studied Strategic Communications here at the University of Minnesota. He attained an internship with the Twins his junior year and eventually landed a permanent job with the team a few years later.

Many of Bryan’s responsibilities include player branding, fan development, and enhancing the overall company brand. The Twins are heavily involved in the community and are always hosting benefits to raise money for great causes. Being a community ambassador, Bryan is constantly seeking ways to create hype for the Twins and his creative ability and commitment to his career has proven to be a success for the Minnesota Twins!

This is Twins Territory!

This post was written by Laura Jollie (@LauraSOJollie) and edited by Kelsey Darnall (@KelseyJDarnall).