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PR Job Pressure: PR Executive & Reporter Among 2017’s Most Stressful Careers, New Report Reveals

anxiety-ridden profession, broadcaster, CareerCast, comms profession, It’s PR, job stress, Kristina Libby, Marketing, newspaper reporter, not ER, Pr, PR executive, Public relations, Social Works Co., stressful careers“It’s PR, Not ER”—A Calming Outlook Can Help to Alleviate Pressure

If you thrive on stress, an ultra-anxiety-ridden profession like firefighter or police officer might be a good line of work for—but so might newspaper reporter, broadcaster or, yes, PR executive, says a new Job Stress report from CareerCast. Your life might not be on the line in those media and comms professions, but 21st-century developments like the proliferation of social media as a news-consumption forum—and the resulting client demands and expectations—have turned our livelihoods into bona fide pressure cookers.

Finding ways to ease the stress is an important job skill for PR people. “If PR professionals think in 2-to-5-year cycles, it takes the stress out of the everyday [work],” said Kristina Libby, CEO of comms agency the Social Works Co, according to the report. Ultimately, stress can and will differ between individuals, as Libby’s attitude demonstrates. “My favorite quote is, ‘It’s PR, not ER,’” she said. “A lot of people who work in PR thrive on their high-stress, high-anxiety environment. I actually think PR done really well is a low-stress environment.”

CareerCast analyzed 11 factors in identifying the most and least stressful jobs, including deadlines, hazards, public scrutiny, physical demands, competition and career growth potential.

On-the-job stress can be caused by a variety of reasons. Taxi drivers not only drive in traffic and bad weather, but they face increased competition from online transportation companies, including Uber and Lyft. For professions like firefighter, military and police officer, stress results from putting their lives at risk and being responsible for the lives of others. In the cases of newspaper reporter and broadcaster, working under tight deadlines and the fear of lawsuits or layoffs may cause stress—broadcasters have a negative job outlook of -9% and the outlook for Newspaper Reporters is -8%.

“Even though they may be stressful, these professions are crucial to American’s safety and democracy,” said Kyle Kensing, online content editor for CareerCast, in a news release. “Firefighters, military and police officers protect us, and newspaper reporters and broadcasters have a big impact in showing us the truth amidst the trend of ’fake news.’”

If you don’t flourish in a physically demanding, hazardous or unpredictable environment, CareerCast’s least stressful job—diagnostic medical sonographer, with an annual median income of $63,630 and growth outlook of 24%—might be good fit for you. Although it requires advanced training, audiologist is another low-stress profession (annual median income of $74,890 and growth outlook of 29%). If you have an aptitude for math, find intrigue in the secrets of data and have the determination to work through problems until you come up with a good solution, consider the profession of operations researcha ($78,630 salary and 30% growth outlook).

CareerCast’s Most Stressful Jobs of 2017

Profession                                          Stress Score         Median Salary            Growth Outlook
1. Enlisted Military Personnel       72.74              $27,936*                   N/A
*Source: United States Army. Refers to E4 Specialist or Corporal with 4 years of experience
2. Firefighter                                  72.68              $45,870                     5%
3. Airline Pilot                                 60.54              $102,520                   5%
4. Police Officer                              51.68              $60,270                     4%
5. Event Coordinator                       51.15              $46,840                    10%
6. Newspaper Reporter                  49.90              $36,360                    -8%%
7. Corporate Executive (Senior)     48.56              $102,690                   6%
8. Public Relations Executive         48.50              $104,140                   7%
9. Taxi Driver                                  48.18               $23,510                    13%
10. Broadcaster                              47.93               $37,720                    -9%


CareerCast’s Least Stressful Jobs of 2017

Profession                                    Stress Score                        Median Salary            Growth Outlook

Diagnostic Medical Sonographer     4.00                               $63,630                     24%
Compliance Officer                           5.73                               $65,640                     3%
Hair Stylist                                           6.71                               $23,710                     10%
Audiologist                                        7.31                               $74,890                     29%
University Professor (tenured)          8.17                               $72,470                     13%
Medical Records Technician             8.57                               $37,110                     15%
Jeweler                                            8.95                              $37,060                     -11%
Operations Research Analyst           9.02                               $78,630                     30%
Pharmacy Technician                        9.10                               $30,410                     9%
Medical Laboratory Technician         10.31                              $50,550                     16%

To rank the most and least stressful careers from the 200 professions on the Jobs Rated report, CareerCast evaluated 11 stress factors: travel required; growth potential; deadlines; working in the public eye; competition in the field; physical demands; environmental conditions; hazards encountered on a regular basis; own life at risk; life of others at risk; and meeting or interacting with the public at large.

Read the complete report here.

Median Annual Salary and Projected Hiring Growth by 2024 are via the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Source: CareerCast; edited by Richard Carufel

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