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Wednesday, October 10, 2012

6 reasons why a communications professional should be a backpacker

A backpacker has many skills we can take advance of

One of the things I love the most is simply the fact of traveling. Traveling around different places is not just a geographical journey; but cultural, historical, social and even gastronomically. 
But traveling as a backpacker is even better (at least for me), just because you have to manage different aspects in order to get a goal, and this goal is not a matter of getting to some place, but the fact of enjoying the way that lead you to it.

Backpacking shapes some important skills that can be useful as a PR professional, just because we have to face similar problems while dealing with clients as a consultant or working in-house for a big company.
I’d like to share with you some of these skills I am talking about:

1.- Independence
Independence understood as the lack of dependency. A communications professional need a ratio of independence to air his ideas in order to land them as well as a backpacker can decide the best way to get to his destiny. Independence could be the freedom of set up a new project or idea, as if you were deciding to begin a new journey.

2. – Autonomy
Thanks to the independence factor a backpacker can move with autonomy, which means taking decisions freely. Even while working for a big company, people working in communications need to be able to choose the best options and alternatives in his work, without any other sort of intervention.

3. – Planification
Before you travel as a backpacker, you choose a goal; you choose the best way to get that goal, which means money, time, resources, etc. As a communications professional you need to make a plan according to you communications goals, and decide you strategies, audiences, messages, and media mix before you start, this is planification and this is learnt while traveling.

4. – Energy
I understand energy as the passion to do the work. Even when you are tired, energy is what makes us move. This energy is necessary to get our goals, even when there are lots of troubles we have to cope with. Energy is the fuel of our communications engine.

5. – Creativity
While energy is fuel, creativity is magic. While traveling we often have to wonder how to solve daily problems on the road; and the heavy rain of new experiences recreate our ideas that feed our creativity.

6. - Uncertainty management 
When you are in the middle of a journey, moreover when you are backpacking around, you frequently have to face with the unknown, the uncertainty. In the same way, working in the dynamic world of communications means to face different scenarios.

Finally, a social communicator could improve his abilities to interact with different cultures and ways of living by going backpacking and bring these skills to the daily work as a communications and PR professional.

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