I couldn’t resist blogging about a survey that has been put together by job search site CareerCast ranking the most stressful professions. They looked at 200 professions against a range of criteria including deadlines, scrutiny, risk to life and interactions with the public. Out of it came a list of the 10 most stressful professions.
It is hardly surprising that enlisted military personnel, firefighter and airline pilot came in as the top three. At four was police officer and then a little surprising was PR executive coming in at six. For someone who works in police PR this is quite a worrying thought combining two of the top stressful roles.
Public relations and communication roles are not really understood by many outside of the industry and there is a lot of education that needs to take place about this. So for lots of people the list would seem odd and I can imagine them questioning how a role that is predominantly office based could be in the top six most stressful.
My view of why it has ranked so highly is the work is under the spotlight and at the forefront of managing reputation during the most challenging times. The growth of social media and the 24/7 nature of the traditional media means there really is no time for someone to switch off. If you care about your job and are focused on being professional then you want to be available whenever needed and that means always being accessible.
In more than 20 years of working in the profession I have come to realise that it is also one where you have to face battles and challenges on a daily basis. I suppose that is the reason that many of us love it, there is always variety in every day. But you have to speak persuasively on issues, you have to be able to explain complex ideas, you have to be resilient, you have to be able to provide your professional advice to very senior people and you have to be creative.
What do you get back in return? One of the most interesting careers where you can have an impact on a daily basis. You get the chance to be creative and innovative and try new things. Every day is different and there is no time to get bored.
Despite all the pressure police PR is a job I love, and I have stated that in many previous blogs, and I can’t imagine anything I would rather do.