Keynote: Six Lessons Learned with Scott Williamson [National Conference Session Recap]

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Scott Williamson

Event: Keynote Address

Presenter: Scott Williamson, Vice President, Public Affairs and Communications, Coca-Cola, North America


What is your Coke story?

Scott Williamson asks this question in every intern interview because he believes the key to public relations is telling great stories. After spending more than 23 years working for Coca-Cola, Williamson had many experiences to share with students at the PRSSA 2015 National Conference.

Williamson challenged students to “be as modern and as timeless” as possible. He encouraged them to write compellingly and always tell great stories. He also said, “your lessons are out there, so go find them and learn them well.” Below are six lessons that Williamson shared during his keynote address.


1. Ignore the Data

OK, not completely, but trust the feeling in your gut when something does not feel right.

2. Be Simple, Be Clear, Be Awesome      

Everything communicates, so be careful what you say and what you do not say. Strive for simplicity, clarity and awesomeness always.

3. Shine Your Own Shoes, Iron Your Own Shirt

Sweat the details. No job is too small to give your best effort. You never know who is watching or what they care about.

4. Belief Matters

Incorporate the brand you are working for into your life. If you want to convince people to buy your product, you need to first be convinced yourself.

5. Question the Impossible

Challenge the unbreakable barriers and surpass the impossible.

6. Hold Out for Both Marshmallows

Do not settle for less. Look forward to the promise of deeper satisfaction and you will be rewarded in life.


Jeremy Ng is a senior at Liberty University. He enjoys copywriting and is currently the digital media specialist for Innovations, his Chapter’s student-run firm. Follow Jeremy Ng on Twitter or connect with him on LinkedIn.

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