Name: Susan Shelby
Postion: President & CEO
Company: Rhino PR
Years in the A/E/C Industry: 17 years
What associations or organizations are you a member of? SMPS, CREW, Mass Building Congress, AGC/MA
Why choose the A/E/C Industry? My public relations (PR) roots began in the high-tech world for networking and telecommunications companies. During the “dot com crash” of 2001, both my husband and I were laid off. I found a job as corporate marketing manager with Vanderweil Engineers, where I spent two years before going to an architecture firm for a year. Since founding Rhino PR in 2004, I have worked with numerous construction companies. The tangible aspects of the A/E/C industry are appealing - to be able to see and visit the buildings my work centers on makes it more meaningful to me.
Advice/Keys to Success: The keys to success begin with setting clear goals backed by a solid plan for how to achieve them. Developing a support network and recognizing where you need assistance are critical to achieving those goals. For me, success is fueled by professional development. I am continuously learning by attending workshops, seminars and conferences and reading motivational books. Every year, I read Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill as a reminder to set and focus on specific goals – both personal and professional.
If you had a mentor in your career, who was it and what did they teach you? I am grateful for the support and encouragement of many people, from my family to my staff to my clients. Over the years, each client has taught me something valuable, and as a consultant I get to work with companies large and small. My clients have taught me to know my strengths and weaknesses and that no one – including me – is perfect. We are all doing the best we can at any given moment, and by keeping a positive attitude, working hard, and taking a break to recharge our batteries, we can achieve great success.