Growing Pains, PR and Politics

When I started with c3PR, I assumed I would learn about public relations – how to write news releases, pitch editors, promote our clients through social media, etc. Yet, while learning the day-to-day tasks, I actually received a more significant and lasting lesson about communication and compassion.

PR is about finding the best way to communicate ideas to a certain group. To achieve this with any sort of proficiency, you must understand the motivations of each group involved; their desires, concerns, what keeps them awake at night. Your goal must be to really listen and find unique and inspiring ways to address the target audience’s uncertainties and assuage their doubts. Maybe that’s why the senior professionals in the field are called PR counselors, as they provide strategic counseling for business executives.

The ability to perceive and understand someone’s concerns is just as beneficial in politics as it is in public relations. Last fall I volunteered to help elect Eric Swalwell to congress. As a young, unknown city councilman and prosecutor going up against the 40-year-incumbent Pete Stark, most thought he didn’t have a chance of winning. However, his passion for change couldn’t go unnoticed for long. After just a few months, his campaign headquarters was flooded with volunteers coming in on weekends, canvasing door-to-door after work and manning the phone banks. It was the hard work and determination of the volunteers in this grass-roots campaign that helped him make it to Capitol Hill. The excitement of the election and the inspirational work of his volunteers rubbed off on me. When I was offered a position in Congressman Eric Swalwell’s district office, I couldn’t turn it down.

In my short time with c3PR, I learned how to empathize with and communicate ideas to vastly divergent groups. Now I would like to use my ability to identify concerns and communicate persuasively on behalf of our constituents. Personally, I believe that for our government to truly serve the people, our elected officials must actively listen to the people they represent and take those concerns to Washington. I’m grateful that c3PR has prepared me to help Congressman Swalwell do just that. If you live in California Congressional District 15, you’re sure to hear from me in one way or another. If not, I hope you’ll let your elected officials know when you have concerns or suggestions. You can find a list for your district at: And while I’ll truly miss working with all of c3PR’s clients, I’m excited for the opportunity to serve our citizens.

3 Responses to “Growing Pains, PR and Politics”

  • Melissa Junge:

    Congratulations Sarah! Though I know everyone at c3PR is sad to see you go (as I am), I wish you the best in Swalwell’s office! The experience will be invaluable and use your PR skills wisely!

  • Elisabeth Handler:

    What a good piece, and how well you have learned some of the most fundamental truths about the practice of public relations!
    Good luck in your exciting new job!

  • Lisa Bianchi:

    Congratulation Sarah! I’ve enjoyed working with you at c3PR, but I’m very excited about your new job. I know you’ll be a tremendous asset to Eric’s team. Stay in touch.

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