Fred Cook was honored at the 2014 PRSA International Conference with the Gold Anvil Award, the Society’s highest individual award. It is considered to be PRSA’s lifetime achievement award and is presented to a public relations practitioner who is a PRSA member and whose accomplishments have made a major contribution to the profession.
Cook describes himself on his LinkedIn profile as the “unlikely CEO of the world’s most unorthodox PR agency.”
He didn’t follow a traditional career path, and he told the audience he barely graduated college. But he did gain experience in many areas, whether working on an ocean tanker, as a limo driver or as a doorman.
“My experience became my credentials,” he said.
He wasn’t afraid to take risks and to do things differently. “We need to be more brave, we need to have bigger ideas, and we need to act more boldly,” he added.
In a recent post, he wrote, “Improvisation, like evolution, is a critical survival tool.”
He talks about all of that in his book Improvise – Unconventional Career Advice from an Unlikely CEO.
Cooks suggests treating one’s career as if it was a pool table and the balls are experiences. “The more balls on the table, the more options you have.”
How many balls do you have in play?