Earlier this month, we watched two standout teams—which had spent the past several months enduring an endless amount of workouts, practices, meetings and games—fight for the title of Super Bowl winner.
As PR professionals, we can all appreciate and gain some perspective from the similarities between building an all-star football team and building an all-star PR team. Here’s what we can learn:
Head Coach: Like a football team’s head coach, senior PR executives build and manage groups of individuals who demonstrate exceptional talent, expertise and promise. While these leaders may not have all the answers, they do have the experience and understanding necessary to develop successful strategies that move things “down the field.”
Team Captain: To take a team from great to best, you need a fearless team leader with a clear game plan and the ability to inspire those around them. When the proposed game plan isn’t working as well as it should, this leader can call an “audible” and change directions. These decisions keep teams nimble and are a testament to the leader’s ability to read what’s best for the team at any given moment.
Most Valuable Player (MVP): An MVP is a top player on the field that has the opportunity to make the game changing play. True MVPs go the extra yard—they assist teammates when needed, always meet deadlines, are known as a go-to for quality work and continuously challenge themselves and those around them to keep improving. Being an asset to their team means also means they are an asset to their client.
The Rookie: No team is complete without a rookie, usually taking the shape of the youngest or newest member. Rookies are sponges and, with strong leadership, coaching and teammates, they can rise to become a captain or certainly the MVP. Leaders should be a mentor for their rookies and show them how to keep the ball moving forward. When appropriate, take them off the bench and trust them to keep the momentum on their own. You might be surprised to find out they have the perfect new pitch idea or a much-needed mastery of preparing presentation decks.
The Locker Room: Also known as your office, a company diner, meeting room—wherever the team comes together and makes magic happen. It’s where the team spends hours preparing client materials and late nights or early mornings meeting deadlines. A great company culture allows every member’s opinion to be heard and new ideas are welcome and respected, ultimately allowing the team to work to its full potential.
Combine all of these elements with motivation, a good attitude and drive, and you will build an all-star PR team that is ready to bring any task their clients throw at them to the end zone for the win.