Saturday, May 23, 2009

REALLY!?! Best Buy, REALLY!?!

On one of my favorite shows, Saturday Night Live, Seth Meyers and Amy Poehler do this skit called,
"REALLY!?! with Seth and Amy," where they bash on something or someone in current events or pop culture. 

Real lesson learned: When employees behave against corporate policy and ethics, be quick to humbly apologize and reassure key publics that you are committed 

Today, I'd like to do my very own. So here it is. 

REALLY!?! with Kristina Rhodes

Really Best Buy, Really!?! 

Best Buy, you say you are helpful and happy to repair computer products purchased at your store, but wait, that's not really true now is it.  

When local news source, Fox News Channel 12, "pulled the plug on a computer's hard drive to make sure it would not boot up," they brought it to several mom and pop stores in the Portland area who found the rigged problem instantly and returned the computer for no fee. 

But Best Buy, no, you charged them $580 for the "repair" in which they also found a virus, among other things AND ultimately suggested that they buy a new computer!

Buy a new computer, oh sure at your fine establishment! I bet it comes with helpful consultation! Bah!  

Way to be the most unhelpful corporation, well... basically ever. 

Lesson learned, when you have a computer problem, visit your local "ma and pop" corner store. 

In the end, Steve Carter, from the corporate offices released the following statement:

"We take any misdiagnosis very seriously, and I personally feel horrible that we missed this opportunity to be consistently accurate. I'm working closely with my Geek Squad agents going forward to ensure that the highest level of service is maintained consistently for our customers in Portland."

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Don't be afraid! Embrace Social Media!

Last night amidst doing some homework, I came across a Craigslist job posting for a "Social Media Coordinator and Communication Director" position with Multnomah County. Reading through the requirements I was pleased to see that the requested requirements were all attributes that I obtained (minus my degree of course, which I'll have next spring). Reading further down, it stated that the position would pay $60k-$70k a year! That's almost twice what an entry level agency PR position pays. I was thrilled! The main area of public relations that I happen to enjoy the most is something that could be made into a career!

But my career parade quickly experienced a downpour. This evening I came across an article from KATU news in Portland, Oregon reporting that the position is no longer available as it has been eliminated due to the thought that social media simply is not a priority. 

This is so unfortunate for me to see this. As a journalism and public relations student in 2009, Social Media is at the forefront of my mind as it is incorporated into all of our teaching here at the University of Oregon's School of Journalism and Communication. The dramatic impact that Social Media can have on a business or an organization is far greater than most people realize. With so many people heading online to receive their news and information, it is vital that businesses and organizations are utilizing this method of communication with their stake-holders. 

As the wedding planner in Father of the Bride once said, "Welcome to the 90's Mr. Banks!" Welcome to the new millennium folks! Sit down and relax. Social Media is here to stay. 

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Seize the Moment!!

As a junior, I am always surprised to hear that there are seniors out there, who've never had an internship or any real world PR experience, are thinking that the job hunt after graduation will be a breeze. 

With the struggling economy, it is so vital that we are making ourselves as marketable and hirable as possible. This means seizing moments of opportunity and networking. Here are some suggestions on how to do this.

1. Seek out student organizations on campus that could help you practice your PR skills and gain some real world experience. 

2. Join your local PRSSA branch and GET INVOLVED! Attend meetings, introduce yourself to the speakers after the meeting and exchange business cards. 

3. Follow-up! Every time you meet a PR professional and get their card, send them an email or handwritten note thanking them for their time and expressing how nice it was to meet them. This will go a long way. 

4. Remember your manners! Every-time you have a conversation with a PR professional, extend your hand with a polite handshake, eye contact and a smile. Remember to be a good listener and pose insightful questions. 

Networking and good manners is the key to success in business. Remember that the next person you meet could be your next boss. 

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Well hello there!

On Tuesday night it was announced that I have been selected as the new Allen Hall Public Relations Firm Director for next year! I am so thrilled and so very honored to lead this outstanding group of students. This summer I'll be interning with The Mentoring Project in Portland, Oregon. You can find more information at 

I intend to use this blog to write about my life as a PR student: what I see, what I learn and what I experience. 

I hope that this can be a place of learning and sharing life experiences and how they correlate with the public relations profession.