Advice for Young Professionals

By Anna McDermott

Peter Van Allen

In the 6th episode of the PR Maven Podcast® with Peter Van Allen, the editor of Mainebiz, Maine’s statewide business publication, Nancy and Peter talked about the relationship they have had between Nancy as publicist and Peter as a newspaper editor, where she and her team are sending information on an ongoing basis about clients, as well as following up with phone calls to pitch specific stories. Nancy also writes an ongoing “How To” column for MaineBiz and Peter remarked that it is one of the paper’s most popular (and requested) columns. Nancy shared that her relationship with MaineBiz is made all the better because it has been ongoing for so many years, and she is very familiar with the paper and Peter’s specific interests as editor.

Nancy and Peter also discussed advice for young professionals, those who are just starting out in their careers. Peter said that whatever business you’re in – from PR to banking – you should seek out the people in that field whom you admire. If you can schedule a meeting or ask them out to coffee (or even offer to bring a coffee to their office), it’s a great way to begin to build a mentor relationship with them. Older professionals are often thrilled to be of assistance.

Nancy said she mentors a MassPay employee and she gets so much joy out of helping him build his network and guiding him professionally. She feels that it’s a great way to give back to her community.

What young professionals might not realize is that older business people are actually eager to meet younger ones in their industry. Young people are generally positive, with a bright outlook and fresh eyes. They can offer a new perspective, which is always of value.

People who have been working in a particular field for 30 or 40 years also love to share their knowledge. Asking for their advice isn’t an imposition, but a compliment.

By connecting with mature professionals, you can grow your network and open doors that you didn’t know were there. If you approach your career with honesty and passion, you can’t go wrong.

The PR Maven® Podcast is presented by Marshall Communications, creator of The Marshall Plan® strategic process. The Marshall Plan is a fully customized document using our 65 proprietary steps and leads to a playbook for your success. If you think your business or organization would be a candidate for a Marshall Plan, you can take our Marshall Plan quiz to find out. Visit

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