Moving to the Darkside with Isabel Ordóñez

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Prior to moving into PR, what was your perception of the industry?

That the only thing PR people do all day long is pitch not very interesting stories. I was wrong!

What lured you to the dark side and to Fleishman-Hillard in particular?

The fact that a former journalist friend of mine, who I highly respect, told me great things about Fleishman-Hillard and his boss. He was happy and excited about his future, something really hard to find in a newsroom nowadays.

What annoyed you most about PR pros when you were a journalist?

People who didn't understand the basics that a reporter can't promise he/she will use the information they were providing or that a story will be published.

How did your journo colleagues react when you told them you were moving into PR?

Surprised but happy for me. No one was judgmental.

Who did you learn most from as a journalist?

Senior reporters, professors at the University of Missouri-Columbia where I got my masters in journalism, and my husband, a very experienced international correspondent.

What has been your biggest surprise about PR?

That it's hard work and very rewarding.

Will there be time for the occasional freelance story?

Maybe at some point, but right now that is hard to imagine.

What advice would you give to other journalists considering the change?

Do it, particularly if you still have many years left to work.

What is your top tip for PR professionals when dealing with hacks?

Unless your client is a celebrity, I think hacks are less common in the US than in the UK. I haven't encountered one yet so I don't have a lot of advice. But I'd say try to consult with your team before making any decision.

Prior to moving into PR, what was your perception of the industry?

That the only thing PR people do all day long is pitch not very interesting stories. I was wrong!

What lured you to the dark side and to Fleishman-Hillard in particular?

The fact that a former journalist friend of mine, who I highly respect, told me great things about Fleishman-Hillard and his boss. He was happy and excited about his future, something really hard to find in a newsroom nowadays.

What annoyed you most about PR pros when you were a journalist?

People who didn't understand the basics that a reporter can't promise he/she will use the information they were providing or that a story will be published.

How did your journo colleagues react when you told them you were moving into PR?

Surprised but happy for me. No one was judgmental.

Who did you learn most from as a journalist?

Senior reporters, professors at the University of Missouri-Columbia where I got my masters in journalism, and my husband, a very experienced international correspondent.

What has been your biggest surprise about PR?

That it's hard work and very rewarding.

Will there be time for the occasional freelance story?

Maybe at some point, but right now that is hard to imagine.

What advice would you give to other journalists considering the change?

Do it, particularly if you still have many years left to work.

What is your top tip for PR professionals when dealing with hacks?

Unless your client is a celebrity, I think hacks are less common in the US than in the UK. I haven't encountered one yet so I don't have a lot of advice. But I'd say try to consult with your team before making any decision.

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