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Most Stressful Jobs: #8 Public Relations Executive, Dist. 742’s Tami DeLand [VIDEO]

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ST. CLOUD — Organizing meetings, talking with clients, creating marketing campaigns and much more, a day in the life of a public relations executive is far from boring.

The career comes in at #8 on our most stressful jobs count down, developed by careercast.com. District 742’s Director of Communications and Community Engagement, Tami DeLand has spent most her life in the world of communications.

DeLand grew up in a family of educators which is one reason she started out in life as a teacher.

“I got my bachelor’s degree at University of Illinois and I went into teaching English. Actually I was a teacher in the St. Cloud school district for 15 years.”

After her teaching career, DeLand switched gears and helped run a business with her husband. She also continued to organize community events.

“I’ve always been pretty involved in the community with non-profits, my church and so forth.”

Expanding her digital horizons, DeLand was a community manager at a business college for several years.

“I helped them launch their website, I did all of their blogging and I set up all of their community engagement events. From there I came back to the district so it became full circle.”

No matter how planned DeLand’s work day may be she says there’s no such thing as a typical day for a P.R. executive.

“Well I start out the day like a normal person, with a calendar and a schedule. Quite often by the time I get to my office all bets are off and it’s a whole different schedule.”

Some days go according to plan while others are spent troubleshooting. DeLand says, because of Minnesota’s unpredictable weather, many changes might need to be made at a moments notice.

“An example of that might be, I get a call on my way into work saying that a neighborhood in St. Cloud has its electricity out, a transformer has been hit, and what that means is one of our schools has no electricity. So immediately communications need to be made, staff has to be alerted, families have to be alerted and accommodations need to be made.”

DeLand’s day is also filled with late nights and numerous meetings. Part of her daily tasks is working on marketing initiatives for the district.

“For example the actual work for the 742 Proud marketing campaign or kindergarten enrollment plan, actually getting that work done.”

DeLand is also the main contact for anyone trying to reach out to the district including media.

“My job is a lot more about strategic planning, being proactive more so than even fliers and video taping. Which of course is all part of it.”

With constantly multi-tasking DeLand says sometimes her job can be stressful.

“I would say this a very busy job, it’s very hectic, it’s very fast paced. So you have to be very quick thinking and you have to be flexible.”

With having the safety and best interests in mind for over 10,000 students, DeLand says it can be a lot to take in.

“With a school district this size, it’s complex, there’s a lot going on at any one given time.”

To wind down after work she likes to read and also enjoys traveling.

“So if I have a big project that I know has a huge outcome like let’s say a referendum, then I plan for some travel afterwards because I know I’m going to need that down time.”

Although DeLand loves her career she says it’s not for everyone. She recommends a person have a love for staying busy and the ability to think outside the box if they want to pursue a career in public relations.

“If you are a person that relies on routine and predictability and that’s what gives you a sense of accomplishment this probably isn’t the job for you.”

But what honestly stresses DeLand out the most…

“Apostrophes, apostrophes give me high anxiety when they aren’t used correctly.”

Tune in next week as work our way to the #7 most stressful job, being a corporate executive.

Tami Deland talks with Rep. Tama Theis on upcoming initiative.  (Chrissy Gaetke, WJON)
Tami Deland talks with Rep. Tama Theis on upcoming initiative. (Chrissy Gaetke, WJON)

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