2020 has been a stressful year to say the least. Much of our attention has been allocated to the daily news cycle and keeping up to date on the pandemic. Business is anything but usual, and our professional routines have been greatly disrupted. Our office environments are now our homes, and instead of coworkers, we have to contend with our kids. And those PR and marketing plans we developed at the end of 2019? Many are likely obsolete.

With so much change and tumult thrust upon us, it’s understandable to want to throw our hands in the air and give up. But it’s important that we don’t allow ourselves to get stuck in a rut. Despite the state of world affairs, we must persist to do our jobs. Doing so not only benefits our firms, but it also benefits us, as it continues to give us a sense of direction and purpose during these uncertain times.

If you are finding yourself stalling because of stress or stuck in a rut, here are some tips to help you find some innovation and motivation in your professional life.

Find a New Perspective

Fresh perspective is invaluable. No matter how many years of experience you have under your belt, seeking the input and opinion of trusted colleagues is always worthwhile. Make the extra effort to get to know, and genuinely connect with, those around you. Even individuals who don’t work in your department will have something worthwhile to share.

When it comes to any PR and marketing scenario, it’s always important to examine the facts from all angles. You’ll find deep appreciation in colleagues who can help you see things from a different point of view.

Ask “Why?”

All too often we do what we do because it’s what we’ve always been doing. The best PR and marketing professionals have the wherewithal to ask “why?” It’s helpful to question your own habits and your routine. Why are you doing what you’re doing? Where can you make changes that would be beneficial?

Remember to Look for the Obvious

Sometimes the solution is right in front of your eyes, yet we miss it time and time again. For example, when you’re deeply immersed in a work project, you might become so consumed by the end goal that you miss something obvious and simple. Solutions don’t have to be complicated or taxing. Just reformatting a spreadsheet could make all the difference in the world in how you use information, what information you should add or what elements could be deleted, leading to stronger, more-effective use of that spreadsheet and its components.

Make Comparisons

In life, comparisons are generally a negative thing. Does that social media scrolling leave you feeling like you’re a bad dog mom? Or lazy? Or boring? Or unsophisticated? Those evaluations are unhealthy and untrue. But in PR and marketing, comparison is healthy and positive. There’s usually a case study resource available to help inspire your client matter, business plan or media objectives. No need to start from scratch. Look to what others have done, and then find ways to apply those techniques to your own situation.

Leave Your Comfort Zone

Leaving a comfort zone can be intimidating. But to break out of a rut, it’s vital that you challenge yourself to act in ways that aren’t necessarily natural. Are you normally quiet during meetings, speaking only when asked a question? Try being assertive and speak up! You have valuable perspectives to add. Or are you normally the one who does all the talking? Maybe it’s time to take a step back to listen and let others lead the conversation. IBM Chair, President and CEO Ginni Rometty once said, “Someone told me growth and comfort do not coexist. And I think it’s a really good thing to remember.”

Never Stop Learning

How many professional organizations are there in the PR and marketing industry? Far too many to count! From the Legal Marketing Association and the Society of Marketing Professional Services to the Public Relations Society of America and Law Firm Media Partners, a digital conference or webinar is always taking place somewhere. If you register, you’ll leave feeling fulfilled by new wisdom.

As our way of life continues to be affected by the pandemic, don’t let yourself get stuck in a rut. Use these tactics to shake things up for yourself and become reengaged with your work. Even if your marketing and PR goals for the year have altered, you can still achieve your desired outcomes by trying something new. Analyze your current PR and marketing initiatives, and make a quick list of areas for improvement, tasks that have become stale, or actions that have worked in the past but may no longer be valid. Don’t be afraid of change. 

Looking for some PR assistance for your firm?  Contact Vivian Hood, Owner/CEO, Public Relations, at vhood@jaffepr.com.