The PRoust Questionnaire provides a quick insight into a public relations practitioner’s interests and point of view, as well as their professional beliefs and values. If you are not familiar with the original 19th-century Proust Questionnaire, please see details at the end of this post.
PRoust Questionnaire answers from Judy Gombita
What is your most striking characteristic as a PR practitioner?
An affinity for exploring new opportunities.
What is your principal fault as a PR practitioner?
Impatience when others are slow to buy in.
What is your favourite occupation in PR?
Building symbiotic relationships, based on trust, liking and respect.
Why do you work in PR?
To watch qualitative, as well as quantitative, outcomes unfold.
What is your idea of PR nirvana?
Anticipated outcomes mirrored by actuality.
What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery in PR?
Having the function reduced to marketing goals and objectives.
What qualities do you most admire in a PR practitioner?
Someone who reaches out in all directions, not just up.
What qualities do you most dislike in a PR practitioner?
Small mindedness and overt ego.
Who would you describe as a PR hero or villain?
Heroes see possibilities in everyone, regardless of gender, race or socio-economic class. Villains perpetuate stereotypes and cliques..
What do you most value in your professional contacts?
Paying it forward.
Have you ever been influenced by a PR campaign?
Yes. Learning to be self-effacing and humble during what is perceived as a great triumph.
Where would you most like to practise PR?
Somewhere warm where I’d be paid in “sun bucks,” as well as real ones.
Has a novel, film, play or other work of fiction ever influenced you as a PR practitioner?
The Wizard of Oz, because truth was more powerful than artifice.
Who do you think has great public relations?
Wonder Woman; her name says it all.
Which real, historical or fictional person or brand would you like to give a reputation makeover?
Henrik Ibsen’s Nora Helmer (A Doll’s House).
Who is your favourite writer?
Alice Munro, because each sparse word and thought is chosen carefully for maximum impact.
What one thing is essential to your PR life?
A continual flow of inspiration for creativity.
Groucho Marx is quoted as saying he’d never join a club that would have him as a member. Which PR club, association or tribes do you belong to—and why?
Officially, the Canadian Public Relations Society, but the tribe to which I have the greatest affinity is an international network of kindred spirits in the PR sphere.
Where do you most like to do your professional networking?
Small groups of people, where individuals know to spend more time listening than talking.
What’s the best career decision you ever made?
Deciding that in-house counsel was a better fit than the uncertain world of journalism.
What skills and abilities do you think tomorrow’s PR leaders need?
Environmental scanning and critical thinking.
Which talent would you most like to have?
To write music that makes spirits soar.
How would you like to end your PR career?
Confident that my chosen role had impact.
How would you describe the current state of public relations?
In a state of flux; great opportunities, but under tremendous pressure from competing disciplines.
What is your PR motto?
The Proust Questionnaire was originally designed to reveal one’s personality. Its name and popularity as a form of interview has roots in the responses given by the French writer, Marcel Proust. His first set of responses came at the end of the nineteenth century, when he was still in his teens (from an English-language “confession album”).
For PR Conversations we have adapted this original idea with questions that offer a public relations’ perspective. It will be fun to compare and contrast responses as the series grows. If you would like to be invited to complete our PRoust Questionnaire for posting on PR Conversations, please visit our Crowdsourcing suggestion form.