Will The Real CT Please Stand Up

For my first post, I wanted to make it a point to say that I am what you read.  I won’t change my point of view to go with the masses and I say it as it is.  All of my posts will be in this vein, and I know you will enjoy the time you spend reading them.  I write to spark conversation and would love to hear feedback.
Why are so many people scared to just be themselves?   What ever happened to individual personality? I’ve been in the PR industry for two years and about 90% of the industry people I have met are the same.  How will people be able to relate to you if there is not a unique personality?  Coworkers, reporters, and people on the street can all grasp your personality from the moment you say “Hello.”
Although, I can understand—It’s very hard to maintain who you are when you have people beating into your head “You need to do it like this,” “Don’t say that,” “Keep your mouth shut and smile,” etc.
If there is a negative stereotype of PR people, then obviously something should change. How is one supposed to learn when they are being beaten into that stereotypical PR role?
I am me.  I’m CT Michaels, I’m almost 23, and I have my whole life ahead of me.  I have style and wear white pants.  I find poop funny and I frequently make fun of people when they fall and for what they are wearing.  I can talk to you for hours about reality television and I know my celebrity gossip. I know how to have a good time and I am a morale booster to my coworkers and others around me.  In high school I got voted most opinionated, and most talkative.  I’ve gotten the “most drunk” label at #MNH and probably #MasquerTweet.  I love it.  This is me. Why should I be scared to be myself?
Here’s an experiment: Google my Twitter handle (CTMichaels) and see what comes up.  You’ll notice the third result is something that most people would find vulgar or disgusting. Me? I think it’s hilarious! I could easily go back and delete that tweet, but why would I?  One reason: it shows personality and character.
Now type in your Twitter handle.  What comes up? Are you going to delete what pops up? If you do—lame!
Now, who are you to say “you can’t have that there, no one will ever hire you”?
If you think that, I probably wouldn’t ever want to work for you because obviously you can’t take a joke.  Who wants to work in an atmosphere of being around someone who doesn’t appreciate the funny things in life (like poop)?
I really don’t understand the rules that people are supposed to abide by in the workforce and in life.  Break free people; stop being scared.
You may be sitting there saying, “This kid is young, and doesn’t know about the workforce.” Well, you’d be wrong. Not only have I worked since the day I turned 14, but I have had some pretty amazing jobs throughout my life.  From working at a video store, to hiring a team of ski instructors at 17 years old, to representing my college for incoming freshman, to eventually working full-time in college as a supervisor at Kohl’s department store, I have seen a lot.  One thing always remained constant though—I kept true to who I am at all times.

For my first post, I wanted to make it a point to say that I am what you read.  I won’t change my point of view to go with the masses and I say it as it is.  All of my posts will be in this vein, and I know you will enjoy the time you spend reading them.  I write to spark conversation and would love to hear feedback.

Why are so many people scared to just be themselves?   What ever happened to individual personality? I’ve been in the PR industry for two years and about 90% of the industry people I have met are the same.  How will people be able to relate to you if there is not a unique personality?  Coworkers, reporters, and people on the street can all grasp your personality from the moment you say “Hello.”

Although, I can understand—It’s very hard to maintain who you are when you have people beating into your head “You need to do it like this,” “Don’t say that,” “Keep your mouth shut and smile,” etc.

If there is a negative stereotype of PR people, then obviously something should change. How is one supposed to learn when they are being beaten into that stereotypical PR role?

I am me.  I’m CT Michaels, I’m almost 23, and I have my whole life ahead of me.  I have style and wear white pants.  I find poop funny and I frequently make fun of people when they fall and for what they are wearing.  I can talk to you for hours about reality television and I know my celebrity gossip. I know how to have a good time and I am a morale booster to my coworkers and others around me. In high school I got voted most opinionated, and most talkative.  I’ve gotten the “most drunk” label at #MNH and probably #MasquerTweet.  I love it.  This is me. Why should I be scared to be myself?

Here’s an experiment: Google my Twitter handle (CTMichaels) and see what comes up.  You’ll notice the third result is something that most people would find vulgar or disgusting. Me? I think it’s hilarious! I could easily go back and delete that tweet, but why would I? It shows personality and character.

Now type in your Twitter handle.  What comes up? Are you going to delete what pops up? If you do—lame!

Now, who are you to say “you can’t have that there, no one will ever hire you”?

If you think that, I probably wouldn’t ever want to work for you because obviously you can’t take a joke.  Who wants to work in an atmosphere of being around someone who doesn’t appreciate the funny things in life (like poop)?

I really don’t understand the rules that people are supposed to abide by in the workforce and in life.  Break free people; stop being scared.

You may be sitting there saying, “This kid is young, and doesn’t know about the workforce.” Well, you’d be wrong. Not only have I worked since the day I turned 14, but I have had some pretty amazing jobs throughout my life.  From working at a video store, to hiring a team of ski instructors at 17 years old, to representing my college for incoming freshman, to eventually working full-time in college as a supervisor at Kohl’s department store, I have seen a lot.  One thing always remained constant though—I kept true to who I am at all times.

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  • CT, you've heard this from me already, but I'll say it again because it bears repeating: I think you're absolutely, 100% right to embrace your true personality as part of your professional identity. So many people I've worked with in the past have tried to stifle their personalities at the workplace to the point where everyone in the office was a blank slate, a perfect automaton. Wow, NOT fun for anyone, and not (as far as I can tell) conducive to productivity.

    Is it SO bad that you like poop jokes? It's not like you're doing anything illegal or disruptive. It's not like enjoying toilet humor affects your work. With the rise of SM, we're learning to trust people differently; a fancy suit and a business card isn't cutting it anymore. Sharing yourself, poop jokes and all, is what gets our trust.

    And you certainly have mine, sir. I'd rather sit down and have a beer with you than with a talking head who refuses to laugh.

  • This is going to sound crazy, but when you said, “I’ve been in the PR industry for two years and about 90% of the industry people I have met are the same.” I thought of my cousin.

    A few weeks ago I was in NYC, and we in “advertising land” as my cousin called it. Off 5th, and off of Park somewhere near Central Park where “all those comm. people live.”

    Cousin goes on, “they all look the same, you could throw a stone and 9 times of the 10, you'll hit one.”

    Needless to say, I wasn't sure how to take those remarks from him, being a PR person myself.

    But after much though, I realized he was right. Too often, especially, in our field, people tend to blend it. Fit that stereotype, that brand that makes them “PR” or makes them “AD execs” etc.,

    I find while it's great to mold and adapt to your peers, it's hurting you in the process if you forget who you are and what you are in the process.

    It's so important and a vital part of your brand identity, because every person is a brand, to simply “go with the flow” but also, be yourself.

    Nothing is wrong with who you are. People get jobs in specific places for a reason. There was something special about them that just seemed to “mesh” with everything else. And that's important — it's important to keep that spark alive. That spark is who you are.

    It'll never be fun if everyone walked around being the same all the time. No fights, no insight, no growth…just robots, all the same.

  • This is going to sound crazy, but when you said, “I’ve been in the PR industry for two years and about 90% of the industry people I have met are the same.” I thought of my cousin.

    A few weeks ago I was in NYC, and we in “advertising land” as my cousin called it. Off 5th, and off of Park somewhere near Central Park where “all those comm. people live.”

    Cousin goes on, “they all look the same, you could throw a stone and 9 times of the 10, you'll hit one.”

    Needless to say, I wasn't sure how to take those remarks from him, being a PR person myself.

    But after much though, I realized he was right. Too often, especially, in our field, people tend to blend it. Fit that stereotype, that brand that makes them “PR” or makes them “AD execs” etc.,

    I find while it's great to mold and adapt to your peers, it's hurting you in the process if you forget who you are and what you are in the process.

    It's so important and a vital part of your brand identity, because every person is a brand, to simply “go with the flow” but also, be yourself.

    Nothing is wrong with who you are. People get jobs in specific places for a reason. There was something special about them that just seemed to “mesh” with everything else. And that's important — it's important to keep that spark alive. That spark is who you are.

    It'll never be fun if everyone walked around being the same all the time. No fights, no insight, no growth…just robots, all the same.

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