Ben Smith, Founder, PRmoment.com
On this week's podcast I'm chatting to Ondine Whittington, group managing director of Golin UK and Virgo Health.
Ondine has worked for Virgo since 2006 and stayed with the firm when it was bought by Golin in 2014. She became the UK MD of Golin Virgo in March 2020.
Golin employs about 70 people in London and Virgo about 60. Golin is well known for its consumer work but it also operates across the tech and healthcare verticals.
Before we start, thanks so much as ever to the podcast sponsors, the PRCA.
And if you haven't taken a look yet, all the categories for the PRmoment Awards 2021 are on the awards microsite PRmomentawards.com
Here's a summary f what we discussed:
01.30 mins How Ondine started at Virgo 2006 and now 15 years later she’s the MD of Golin and Virgo in the UK.
03.30 mins How Ondine didn’t plan to leave Virgo but at the same time she never planned to stay.
04.00 mins Do you think people tend to change jobs too often in PR?
07.00 mins How has Ondine found moving from client facing roles to becoming the Golin UK MD?
08.00 mins How it was finding herself “in the middle of a pandemic within two weeks of taking the role.”
10.00 mins and 11.30 mins Why PR has had a good lockdown.
11.00 mins How building trust with your teams is more difficult in a virtual environment.
14.00 mins Why “the focus on internal teams and their welfare has never been so important” for agency CEOs.
16.00 mins “The role of the employer has changed (during lockdown.) There are days when you feel like a councillor”.
17.00 mins In a virtual environment, as an agency leader, the time invested in keeping in touch with your team “could be a full time job right now.”
18.00 mins Why Ondine decided she didn’t want to be a doctor anymore but wanted to work in PR!
21.00 mins In hindsight Ondine looks back at the Golin/Virgo merger.What worked and what didn’t?
28.00 mins PR firms have relied on training by osmosis - and in a virtual environment that just doesn't work does it?
29.00 mins Why trying to create an environment for better staff training and development in a virtual environment is “the top issue” of PR agency leaders at the moment.
30.00 mins The great PR lockdown creativity challenge.
33.00 mins Ondine talks about the “sinister underbelly of flexible working.”
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