How available should you make yourself to your clients? How about your supervisor? Your teammates?
Setting expectations and maintaining boundaries can be very challenging for a public relations professional. The evolving landscape of client needs, media relationships, crisis scenarios and technology within the communications field can make healthy boundaries seem impossible. Add to this reality that many public relations professionals work exceptionally long hours and are often on-call for their clients and teams, and you have a recipe for disaster.
I’ve found that in public relations, there are five core groups that present regular opportunities to maintain boundaries and set or adjust expectations:
Each of these groups come with its own expectations, and whether you have been working with someone for a long period of time or you are just starting a relationship, ensuring you are both on the same page is vital. Though I’ve been practicing boundary setting and adjusting expectations for years now, I still find myself getting sucked into new situations, which tend to bring opportunities for broken boundary barriers.
Here are some common scenarios and tips for how to adjust expectations, avoid pitfalls and maintain boundaries: