It’s the time of year when college graduates begin the path to real life – job ambitions – some with clear direction and others still trying to figure it out. Like it was yesterday, I remember in May 1995 graduating college and having no clue what profession I wanted to work in. So, complete with my B.A., I worked at my local pizzeria as I had since age 12 while I “figured it out.” Delivering pizza lasted little over one year (and I loved it), and then I went to a MBA program in Israel–which I dropped out of after less than a week. I ended up working in politics in Israel, loved it and stumbled upon a PR job. At the age of 25, I returned to NY and had my first job at a PR agency.

A few years later, this public school educated boy from the Bronx started his own business which has grown today to be one of the 25 largest PR firms in America. Today, at the age of 37, with a family and children at home, I understand the world a little better than I did as a college graduate in 1995.

The Public Relations industry is seen by The Bureau of Labor Statistics as one of the fastest growing industries for employment, and ranked on the 2012 list of Best Jobs. So, some personal reflections from an entrepreneur:

The world moves quickly. Know the values and consequences of that. It’s just like your parents tell you, life is fast.

  • Do it your way. Everyone has their own path to success – find yours and follow it. It could be that you would be happy being a solopreneur—yes, that’s a thing! You can learn more about what a “solopreneur” is by clicking on the link.

    One of the reasons I started my own business was I hated wearing ties – yes something as petty as that matters for some of us. Less than 10 years after starting my agency I was named an Ernst & Young Semi-Finalist for Entrepreneur of the Year, and my company was named to the Inc. 500 list.

  • Give a damn. Passion matters – Care about your work and chosen profession.
  • Focus on winning and the path to get there, not obstacles or mistakes on the way. Don’t be afraid – think big and make it happen.
  • Set goals and stop to reflect on daily, weekly, and monthly goals.
  • Identify areas where a business can improve. For example, large overhead costs can hold a company back, but something as simple as switching to a different utility provider can save a business huge amounts of money. Suggest a comparison site such as Utility Bidder and your ingenuity will be appreciated.
  • We have 2 ears and 1 mouth for a reason – learn to listen.
  • Live an ethical, balanced life with honor, integrity and laughter. This pays big dividends in business, and life.
  • Read a lot – books, news, blogs – anything you can consume. It’s a major insight into understanding your business well beyond whatever you learned at school (odds are no one will ever again ask you your GPA).
  • Even though you are young and think you can do everything, seek evolution rather than revolution. If you gradually take two steps forward, you may take one step back. That’s okay it’s easier to recover from one step backward than if you hurt and take four steps at once and then another four, you might trip and fall three steps behind – it’s harder to get back up to speed from that point.
  • Your only limits are those you set for yourself – take it from this boy from the Bronx the sky is the limit.
  • Work hard. Work really hard – the harder I work the luckier I seem to become.

My Mom, Penny Waga used to always tell me “try to make the most of it and see it is all really worth it.” Nothing better than that.

Ronn Torossian is CEO of 5WPR, a top 25 PR Firm, and author of “For Immediate Release: Shape Minds, Build Brands, and Deliver Results with Game-Changing Public Relations

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Ronn Torossian is the Founder, President and CEO of New York-based 5W Public Relations. He has overseen the company's rapid growth and expansion to the Inc. 500 list, as well as provided counsel to hundreds of companies, including members of the Fortune 500, Inc. 500 and Forbes 400. His work spans global interests, corporate entities, high-profile individuals, regional business entities, government agencies and academic institutions - both on routine public relations matters and extremely sensitive issues. One of the foremost public relations experts in the U.S., Torossian is known for his aggressive, results-focused orientation, as well as his close working relationships with members of the media, influencers, decision makers, politicians and celebrities. At 5W Public Relations, Torossian's client experience has included programs for Coca-Cola, Microsoft, Anheuser-Busch, Barnes & Noble, Cantor Fitzgerald, IHOP, McDonald's, Evian, EDS, VeriSign, XM Radio, Seagram's, The Loews Regency, Bad Boy Worldwide Entertainment, Marriott Hotels, Vail Resorts, Pamela Anderson, Snoop Dogg, the Government of Israel, and others. Referred to by The New York Post as a "publicity guru," by Fox News as a "high-powered PR CEO," by Tyra Banks as a "crisis management guru," and by CNN as "a leading PR expert," Torossian is regularly featured in and quoted by the media, including by CNN, Fox News Channel, MSNBC, NBC, The New York Times, and others. CBS National News said "Ronn Torossian knows spin," and a New York Times feature story on Torossian referred to him as "The consummate hard-driving, scrappy NY publicist." Earlier in his career, Torossian was a Vice President/Group Director for one of The InterPublic Group's (IPG) largest PR agencies, where he was responsible for significant client growth and successful client programs, including work for Clinique, Fox News Channel, DHL, Hard Rock Café and others. A resident of Manhattan’s Upper West Side, Torossian was named to the Advertising Age "40 Under 40" list, PR Week's "40 Under 40" List, is a regular lecturer at universities and conferences, a member of Young Presidents Organization (YPO) and a board member of numerous non-profit organizations.