The Importance of Making it REAL at Counselors Academy

Running an independent PR agency can be a rewarding, yet risky business, with a variety of personal and professional challenges, adequate to fill a lifetime of sleepless nights. These include:

  • Constant, relentless price-cutting competition from multi-national agencies with deep pockets and a New Biz funnel that extends around the world;
  • The need to be a trend-spotting, trendsetter, always paving the way at the cutting-edge of PR best practices;
  • Learning and improving your business leadership skills, while trying to balance your business and personal life; 
  • Finding time to network and problem-solve with like-minded agency leaders who feel your pain, empathize with your situation and are willing to share;
  • Hiring and retaining the best and the brightest teammates;
  • Winning and holding on to clients and attracting New Biz;
  • And so on …

Counselors Academy to the rescue

That’s why, no matter how cluttered or crammed my calendar, I always find time to attend the Counselors Academy Spring Conference every year. My annual, go-to shot of inspiration, Counselors Academy is the Senior Leadership division of PRSA, the Public Relations Society of America. Its members include agency owners and PR practice leaders from across North America; people just like me, who practice PR with a passion and must hone their entrepreneurial skills on a daily basis.

I spend a lot of time, these days, travelling to and speaking at public relations and social media conferences throughout North America, and #CAprsa is one of the very few conferences I still find time and money to attend. And it’s worth every penny.

Here’s why:

  • The opportunity to meet, greet, learn, laugh and have fun with agency leaders from across North America who share willingly and openly. Check out this Twitlist of social PR’s who have already booked to attend this year’s conference in New Orleans this May;
  • Forward-thinking speakers with original, need-to-know content, tips and contacts who are as eager to know you, as you are them, and who stick around to socialize if they can. This year’s agenda includes Jay Baer and Gini Dietrich, to name only two;
  • A superbly well-organized event with non-stop, built-in opportunities  to network and form contacts that will last you a lifetime;
  • Open and FREE access to expert legal, financial and HR advice on how to run a better biz;
  • Finding like-minded PR pros to partner with beyond your local, regional or national borders;
  • And last, but certainly not least, an action-packed agenda full of nonstop sessions: keynotes, breakouts and round tables, combined with parties, after-parties, cocktails and nights out on the town.

Please join us

I first attended Counselors Academy back in the year 2000 and have only missed one since then. I’ve made some amazing friends along the way and learned much about how to run a better, faster, smarter PR agency; and how to create breakthrough, results-driven programs with all the latest tools and tactics.

Please join us at Counselors Academy New Orleans May 6-8. I promise it will be well worth your time and money. But please don’t just take it from me, check out Lisa Gerber‘s recent blog post for further rave reviews!

Hope to see you there!

Deborah Weinstein, is co-founder, partner and president of Strategic Objectives, an international award-winning, full-service public relations agency that delivers smart ideas and better solutions to many of Canada and the world’s leading brands.  Headquartered in Toronto, Strategic Objectives is IABC/Toronto PR Agency of the Year 2011 and 2009. It employs more than 40 top public relations professionals, in addition to associates across Canada, and collaborates with Pinnacle Worldwide PR partners around the world.