The PR Industry’s High School Stereotypes

In this fun article by Matt Dougherty, public relations assistant at BLASTmedia, we learn a interesting take on the PR industry by comparing various roles to stereotypical high school movie characters. Dougherty explains how our PR skills started to form when dealing with different groups in high school, whether it be jocks, cheerleaders, nerds, stoners, or the hipsters. When dealing with the different groups we made a common ground to talk and build a relationship that we benefited from down the road. Dougherty uses the examples of a jock asking a nerd for help on homework or a band geek receiving a makeover from the pretty, popular girl. Dougherty lists four classic high school groups and their relation to people in the PR industry.

The popular kids: Crisis communicators

Dougherty says this would be the popular girls, other wise known as the “plastics” in the movie “Mean Girls.” These girls are constantly in crisis mode when worrying about their image. Whether the crisis be a stain on a shirt or wearing the same sweat pants twice in a week. Dougherty says they are the ultimate crisis communicators, always on their toes trying fend off negative press.


The Jocks: Executives

Dougherty claims these guys rule the school, sometimes even with force. The jocks, like executives in a firm can often be the terrible bully roaming the office. Dougherty does say they can have a soft side, as seen in “The Breakfast Club” by Emilio Estevez who falls for the girl far from his social group.


The nerds: Social media’s early adopters 

The executives (the jocks) can be found picking on these guys for focusing on something not important to the firm while not realizing they are on the right path for fame, fortune, and success. Like in the classic “Revenge of the Nerds,” these guys can be the heroes.


The new kid: Young PR Pros

Though it won’t be easy for us young PR pros like it was for new guy Ren McCormack in “Footloose” (who danced his way through his challenges) we still can make a comparison. Dougherty says young PR pros face new challenges every day and sometimes they get right through them and other times fall flat on their face. But like Ren McCormack they could just change your establishment along the way.

This article was an interesting way to look at the PR world, but it did make a lot of sense. I know from my experiences in high school, many different walks of life helped me to accomplish many different things, which lead to some interesting relationships. If we can find a common ground with people that aren’t our “type” we can open many doors to achieving our end goals.

Here’s a link to the article on


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s