In the public relations field (and especially in PRSSA), we all have a lot of different mentors: peer mentors, professional mentors, professors, advisors, old bosses and just overall life mentors. These relationships are crucial in our lives when we need advice on classes, resumes, internships and jobs, so it’s important to strengthen these relationships over time. The holidays are a great time to reach back out to your mentors and ask for their advice and support as you work toward your goals. If you’re looking for a place to start, here’s five ways to reach out to mentors during our winter break:
- Do some resume edits
As spring semester approaches, it’s time to start working on those internship and job applications, which also means it’s time to update your resume. Reach out to your mentor and see if they are willing to look through your current resume and give you edits. Even though you have probably edited your resume a million times, there’s always something that you haven’t noticed. Getting a second pair of eyes, especially from people older and more experienced than you, is so important to presenting yourself in the best way possible.
- Get coffee with them
There’s nothing better than catching up over a cup of coffee, IMO. It’s a simple way to hang out and talk about everything professional and personal in both of your lives. Also, the holidays are busy, so everyone needs a little extra caffeine. Bonus tip: when you travel home for winter break, it gives you an extra opportunity to meet up with your mentor that you’re not geographically close to in college. The extra time off school allows you to travel and meet people you can’t visit in college.
- Visit an old workplace
Heading home for the holidays is a great way to go see your old coworkers and supervisors from an old internship or job. I guarantee all of these people would love to see you and know how you’re doing, and it’s important for you to keep these relationships strong because they can help you with networking in the future.
- Make new connections
In addition to your network, your mentor has a whole different network of diverse people with different interests. There’s a huge chance that they know someone that can help you you’re your career goals, whether it’s in a specific industry, city or company. Check out LinkedIn to see who your mentors are connected with and ask them for some introductions.
- Be genuine
The most important thing about reconnecting with mentors is simply being authentic. Ask them how the last few months have been, how their job has been and how their kids are. People want to feel like you care about them. If you ask your mentor for a favor when you haven’t kept in contact with them otherwise, they’re going to feel like you’re using them. Be a genuine person and stay in touch because you want to, not just because you need something.
Hannah Schuller is a senior studying strategic communication and the current VP of Member Relations for Scripps PRSSA.