Meet Courtney: Our Newest CHENer

Uncategorized Posted Jun 8, 2018 by Courtney Kruzement-Prykhodko

Up until this point in my life, I was never so sure about what I wanted to do with my career. I began my journey at Northeastern University studying Psychology, where I worked in a lab studying emotions. It made me feel… less than enthused about continuing with what would be many more years of reading studies and putting in countless hours of lab work. Shortly after that, I decided I wanted to pursue my love of writing, which came much more naturally to me than stats and memorization.

So, I started studying journalism. I quickly fell in love with writing scripts and decided to do a spring Co-Op in broadcast journalism. I loved the fast-paced, unpredictable days, but didn’t quite love the erratic schedules and lack of sleep. I took the summer to really consider all my options and at a low point, even studied and took the LSAT “just in case” I decided to extend my university stay (It should be noted that I’ve never wanted to be a lawyer, I just didn’t want to leave Boston).

I returned to campus with one fall semester left and no clue as to what I’d do after graduation. I happened to enroll in a PR class that went over the basics, but could have never fully prepared me for the real experience. I knew I had the skills (writing, creativity) and personality traits (attention to detail, organization) that would help me excel in the field though, so I began applying to any and every PR agency in town with an open entry-level position.

I interviewed throughout the holidays and was so beyond thrilled when I received my first offer that I accepted immediately. It worked out especially well since I had already convinced my parents to let me sign a lease in Boston even though I hadn’t actually secured a paying job yet.

I started my PR career at a small agency. I was incredibly eager to prove myself and show that I could take on more than the basics, and the agency took steps to help me learn and grow. I took on emergency research requests, crisis monitor processes, and led training sessions for my colleagues.

During this time, I also started to become more involved in new business research. Paired with my growing interest into what it takes to run a business, I decided it was time to try something new, diversify my skill set, and change up my career path to see where it took me.

I started a new job focused on business development for a small branding and design agency and took online classes to learn more about entrepreneurship essentials. During my time there, I learned so much about what goes into creating a brand and the challenges associated with running a small business.

I also quickly realized that I greatly missed public relations. This was a big turning point for me. I had finally found something I was truly passionate and excited about doing. -I just needed to find the right team to join.

Cue applying to a handful of PR agencies in Boston, round two.

After my first meeting with CHEN, there was just something different that set them apart from anyone else I spoke to. I got the sense that the group of people they had cultivated over the years had grown into a tightly-knit family of sorts, that cared for and respected each other. I could immediately sense that above all, they were incredibly smart and passionate about what they do for their clients. Importantly, they took pride in having fun while doing it.

I am so thrilled to have joined the CHEN team. The opportunity came at a perfect time in my life. I had not only figured out through trial and error what I liked career-wise, but also what was important to me in a workplace day-to-day. For the first time in my career I knew what I wanted and could now truly appreciate a good agency when I saw it.

When working in PR, you need an authentic balance of work hard, play hard. After a stressful day, you need colleagues that can help lighten the mood and make you laugh (and maybe pour you a glass of wine).

But above all, you need a smart, reliable team to have your back through the ups and downs that PR brings. That’s what I found here at CHEN.