Years as a Member of PRSA-NCC: 10+
Twitter ID: aaroncohenpr
LinkedIn ID: https://www.linkedin.com/pub/aaron-cohen/10/6b8/706
Why did you join PRSA-NCC? To get better acquainted with people in the industry I just joined, and to share what I’ve learned, as a communications professional of long standing.
How long have you been in the PR field? 16 years
What was your first job in the profession? Since leaving journalism, I’ve worked as a media relations specialist for large and small agencies. In agencies you are something of a Swiss Army Knife. I am best acquainted with health care, defense, manufacturing, and the association/non-profit world. But I have worked in retail, insurance, commercial real estate, technology and lately…marijuana.
Tell us about your range of experience and/or your greatest skills. As a boy, I cut my teeth in sales; that taught me people skills. Then I became a reporter where I learned to be analytical and curious…and a wee bit cynical. My innate knowledge of journalism, and journalists and my gift of gab, has enabled me to succeed as a PR strategist and tactician. I’m pretty well rounded. And I get results in all media.
What’s your greatest career achievement? Taking what I’ve learned over three decades, and all the people I’ve met, and creating a sustainable, profitable business virtually overnight.
How would you describe your professional philosophy? Never give up.
What’s your dream job? This is the second business I’ve run, so I’m living my dream. Once again I’m relishing the freedom and independence I’ve won and I’m absolutely killing it for clients. What could be better than that?
Who would you consider to be your mentor, and why? My “mentor” is not a single person, but a composite of trusted friends I’ve accumulated over a lifetime. I’ve been advised by them for decades and am the wiser for it.
Offer any advice you have for maintaining work/life balance. Hard as it is to do in Washington, where every encounter is a networking experience, I try to maintain separation between my personal and business lives. But never let a professional or personal opportunity slip away because of an artificial barrier.
Offer any advice you have for today’s PR practitioner. Get to know everyone you can. Do many different things to enrich your life – especially outside of PR, and you will be better at PR as a result. And don’t leave home without a business card.
When you’re not working, what do you like to do in your spare time? Hang with my family, exercise, read, cook, watch sports.
Share anything else you would like fellow chapter members to know. You get out of PRSA what you put into it. Join a committee and do something for other people, especially when they are down. It’s the right thing to do, and when you are down the good karma will be repaid.