Let me start out by stating the obvious: I’m not an astrologer, nor a fortune-teller.

I lived and died by horoscopes as a teen, as I imagine many of you did as well. And while I now have a healthy sense of skepticism, I do believe in the power of positive thinking, was a little spooked at how accurate a certain Tarot card reader used to be, and am a second-degree Reiki practitioner (didn’t know that about me, did you?).

All of which is to say, I’ve had an extreme fascination with astrology in the past, and barely pay attention to it now. Probably much like you.

When I was going through my Reader last week, I came across this admittedly fun post on the best careers for your Zodiac sign (CareerBuilder). With a headline like that, how could I not stop and read it?

So I did, and here are a couple of excerpts:

“Many high school students take an aptitude test to guide them on a path that they would enjoy. Astrology works the same way ”” it’s like a blueprint of your personality,” says Katherine Metcalf, a professional astrologer from Phoenix, Ariz. “We all come into this world with likes and dislikes, natural talents and areas where we need to learn and grow.”

A Gemini, for example, is totally comfortable networking and socializing, Metcalf says. “Put her in marketing or sales and she’s happy. Stick her in a cubicle with no human contact and she will wither.”

(My sister is a Gemini. She sucks at sales.)

And

According to Metcalf, the most general way to identify your natural career strengths is by your element, of which there are four in the zodiac: Fire, Earth, Air and Water, with three signs belonging to each element.

Water signs (Cancer, Scorpio and Pisces): The Water signs are the touchy, feely people of the zodiac. Water is related to our emotions and many excel at counseling. They are highly empathic and each sign has its own unique energy.

(My husband is a Cancer. Touchy-feely? Ha!)

You should go read the post, it is a fun one. My question to you is, how seriously do you take this kind of thing?

Maybe the planets, moon, stars have some influence on us by virtue of where and when we are born. But don’t our surroundings, our upbringing also have a lot to do with that?

For example, here’s what this post says about Capricorn (my star sign):

Capricorn (December 22 – January 19)
Key traits: Ambitious, resourceful, patient and authoritarian. Driven and competitive, any project you take on, you’ll do what ever it takes to be the best.
Best careers: Finance, business development/management, doctor, trainer.
Careers to avoid: A financially risky jobs [sic] or a career where there is no room for advancement.

Hmm.

Ambitious: check. Resourceful: check. Patient: so not! Authoritarian: somewhat, though I’m trying to do better. Driven and competitive: yes, but not so’s I’d kill anyone over it.

Careers to avoid: a “financially risky jobs”… what the heck am I doing in PR then?!

In my opinion, things like Zodiac signs can be reassuring when we need it, but they can also hold us back if we believe what is “predestined” is all that we are capable of achieving. So while they’re good for fun, they shouldn’t be taken too seriously. Though it was smart of CareerBuilder to come up with a post like this that let them point you to various job listings on the site.

In my opinion (I know, the second time I’ve said that), what makes a good PR practitioner are, in no particular order:

  • Excellent communication skills, and that includes writing
  • Empathy – you have to be able to put yourself in other people’s shoes
  • Tact
  • Attention to detail
  • Honesty – you have to be able to call BS when you see it (and yes, tell your clients as well, but in a tactful way)
  • Integrity
  • Creativity
  • The desire to talk to people, especially if you’re working in social media
  • Excellent listener
  • Sense of humor

I’m sure I’ve left some out. But even these qualities are not limited to specific Zodiac signs, are they?

And if you really want to make good in PR, you could do a lot worse than follow these nine suggestions from Arik Hanson.

My point is

If you’ve set your mind on something, go do it. Never mind your star sign.

What do you think? Do you believe your star sign has helped – or hindered – you in your career? What do you think are the qualities of a good PR pro? Please let me know, the comments, as always, are yours.

Image: Art History Images (Holly Hayes) via Flickr, CC 2.0

Shonali Burke
Founder and publisher of Waxing UnLyrical, Shonali Burke helps smart businesses make bank by taking their communications from corporate codswallop to community cool™. She is also the founder of The Social PR Virtuoso®, which provides online, on-demand training that helps you unleash your inner Social PR superhero. Shonali is mad about ABBA, bacon, cooking, dogs, and Elvis, though not necessarily in that order. Wouldn't you like to be in her kitchen?
Shonali Burke