Palmetto PR Diva Dish – Jessica Munday, president of Trio Solutions

I just finished a 4.5-mile run in Jetton Park on the beautiful Lake Norman! One of my friends is planning to run the marathon in Las Vegas this December and I told her I would run with her…After a week of more mileage I’m not sure if this 31-year-old can do another marathon, but I will try!

This week we are profiling Jessica Munday, president and founder of Trio Solutions in Mt. Pleasant, S.C. Congratulations, Jessica, on the soon-to-be new addition to your family, and thanks for your insight on the importance of creating lasting relationships within the industry. After all, everyone wants to be treated with respect.

I’ve got meetings in Charlotte today and then am going to the Tom Petty concert tonight with some friends. Hope you have a great weekend, no matter what you have planned.

o Please provide title and a brief description of what you do:
o I’m Jessica Munday, president and founder of Trio Solutions Inc., a full-service marketing communications firm based in Mount Pleasant, SC. Our company specializes in marketing, event planning and Web development for nonprofit and health care organizations.

o How did you become interested in the public relations/advertising industry?
o I knew when I was a senior in high school that I wanted to work in the communications field. My aunt worked for a large PR firm in Columbia, SC and I had an opportunity to go with her to a grand opening for one of her clients. Witnessing her pull together the media, VIP guests and overseeing all the logistics was enough to intrigue me. I went home and applied to USC’s College of Journalism. The rest is history.

o What changes have you seen in the industry that is the most interesting to you?
o Definitely the Internet. It’s fascinating, fast-paced and overwhelming all at the same time. Keeping up with, and understanding, all the new technology to communication professionals is quite a challenge but one I enjoy.

o Are you involved in any professional associations? If so, what are they and what do you learn by being involved?
o I have been involved with the American Marketing Association for several years and I frequently attend our local PRSA meetings. Because we specialize in working with nonprofits, I am also actively involved with the South Carolina Association of Nonprofits Organizations (SCANPO) and the Association of Fundraising Professionals. The biggest value I find from being involved with these groups is having the opportunity to meet and network with other industry professionals.

o What is the one piece of advice you would give students that are interested in pursuing a career in the public relations/investor relations/marketing industry?
o Regardless of what you learn in school or read in a book, everything you do is dependent on relationships. Having strong relationships in this industry, whether it’s with your vendors, the media, your clients or your co-workers, is the most important asset you can have. Manage them carefully and with the utmost respect.

o What is the best thing about your job?
o Knowing that I am doing what I love to do and that through the organizations we work with, I’m making a difference. It’s very comforting and fulfilling at the end of the day.

o What is the thing you like least about your job?
o Being in an industry where so many people think they can do what you do. Everyone thinks they know how to market themselves. You see it all the time with homemade brochures (Publisher, anyone?), logos designed with clipart and Microsoft Word Art, poorly written press releases, Web sites designed by 13-year-olds. Marketing and PR as a practice still have a long way to go before they are viewed as being as vital of a business operation as HR or finance but we’re making great strides.

o Are there any exciting announcements you’d like to tell us about (either with your company or one of your clients)?
o Well the most exciting announcement I have is that I’m excepting my third child this September. Obviously our family addition will add a new dynamic to my life as a working mom and business owner.

o How do you balance your professional career with your personal life?
o It’s a challenge but both aspects of my life are so fulfilling that I do everything humanly possible to ensure a balance and to be the best I can be as a mother, wife and business owner. Sometimes it can feel overwhelming and that’s when I remind myself to take each day as it comes and to put my faith in God that he would never give me more than I can handle.

o Anything else you would like to add?
o Yes, I think what Palmetto PR Divas is doing is awesome. Keep up the great work and I love the way you ‘pay it forward’ with each nomination. (Editor’s note: Thanks, Jessica!)

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