Daney Parker, Editor, PRmoment.com
When you have a brief respite from slogging away at your desk it is nice to look up and see a great view. Here is a selection of some of the best views in the industry whilst PRs discuss why they find them so inspiring.
West London tube line
Roseanna Lane, account director at agency CommsCo: “As CommsCo HQ is in leafy West London, it’s always nice to look out at the greenery and park across the road (which is a local dog walking spot too).Something else slightly different about our office is that we’re next to the train line - so if you’re eating lunch or looking for inspiration, it’s a great people watching spot. Equally, it’s in the background to a lot of our calls, so sometimes makes for a good ice breaker too.”
Sea view in Crete
Lorraine Emmett, managing director of agency EC-PR: currently working from Crete: “I find beautiful surroundings stir the creative juices. My holidays have always been constantly interrupted by ideas for the business; now we are fully remote the opportunity to fuel EC-PR with ideas and strategies conceived in stunning places is a constant. That’s not to say my stand-up desk at home with a view of my parked car isn’t also an absolute joy to work from!”
Lady Penelope Woofington-West
Lottie West, global head of PR at Fox Agency: “One of the few positives that came out of lockdown was a shift towards a more flexible working culture. For me, this meant fulfilling a long-held dream of getting a dog. Penny - Lady Penelope Woofington-West officially - arrived on the scene in September 2020 and has been a constant presence beside (and sometimes on top of) my desk ever since. She’s even been known to send the odd Slack message! Many of us at Fox Agency have four-legged friends at home - having the flexibility to work fully hybrid makes being a dog parent so much easier. Our London office is in a dog-friendly WeWork, so Penny regularly commutes in with me, and sits at the desk next to me - as long as she has a chair, she’s happy. The building itself has great views across the City, but looking up from my desk to see my little companion beside me beats the view from any window.”
Cat and the sea
David Mahoney from David Mahoney Communications: “At home, I work in my loffice - loft-office – however, my adorable (albeit needy) cat will often sit at the bottom of the ladder and howl for my attention, food, or just needing to know where I am. Whilst this is extremely endearing, it can often be rather distracting when I’m on a client call or working on something that requires my full focus. I also occasionally work remotely from Wexford in Ireland, and the main distraction is the glorious view, sea and sun that is at the end of my road, the need to be there all day is strong, but it can often be a lovely place to take a call and share the view with clients.”
Laura Chambers, co-founder of comms agency Jack & Grace: “Ours is a remote-first, flexible comms agency, but we like to get together to work in person too. With our team spread across the UK we choose convenient places to meet, and today’s location was Belvoir Castle near Grantham. We were treated to some incredible views from the restaurant window, helped by the glorious sunshine of course, and enjoyed filling our lungs with fresh air during an after-lunch stroll.
“We believe in letting people choose when and where they work - so we’re never restricted to sitting at the same desk - and if that means seeking out a room with a view to inspire some creative thinking, we do it.”
William Richardson, associate director at PR agency TEAM LEWIS: “We are based in Milbank Tower. Fun fact: until the BT Tower’s completion in 1964, Millbank Tower, constructed in 1963, was the tallest building in the UK! Being smack bang in the middle of Westminster offers a rather picture-perfect Mary Poppins-esque view of the British capital: the Shard, the London Eye, Big Ben, Lambeth Palace, the Thames. A quick peek out of the window is a game of ticking off London landmarks. The view is both a help and a hindrance - a view like this is a great conversation icebreaker with new clients visiting the office, and helps stir creativity amongst TEAM LEWIS. It also is a bit of a hindrance - I mean who wouldn’t want to gaze at that view when you’ve got your timesheets in front of you? “
Leeds and London cityscapes
Beth Horner at communications agency, Hatch: “At our Leeds headquarters, we have a fantastic spot on Leeds Dock and on sunny days like today it's great to have an elevated view over the water. Leeds is fast-becoming the media hub of the north and we're lucky to have many great neighbours, with independent cafes, bars, broadcasters and brands such as Sky, just a stone's throw away. At our office at The Ministry in central London, a 15-minute walk from the South Bank, we're right in the heart of the action, with The Food Market opposite, and the amazing Mercato Metropolitano food court right behind us. Hatch is very much an agency of foodies, and with plenty of long-standing food and drink clients in our roaster, our location in London couldn't be better.
Salford and Manchester cities
Rick Guttridge, MD of PR agency Smoking Gun: We are lucky enough to be bang in the city centre and have our own rooftop balcony and BBQ.The vista stretches West across the Irwell to Salford, North past the iconic art deco Kendal's store and East across the bulk of the city centre.
“The fusion of modernity and industrial heritage sums up the spirit of Manchester perfectly and suits our own agency characteristics.
“The team and our visitors find the fast changing skyline equally impressive and inspiring as we cook up our next campaign.”
Eitan Goldstein, communications manager of PR management (PRM) platform Propel PRM: “This is the view from my “desk”. The view itself is of the Jaffa port and the Tel Aviv coastline. I find this cafe to be a great place to work. The constant lapping of the waves acts as a metronome and enables me to get into a meditative writing flow. I’ve also found that when I have writer’s block, staring at the boats, watching the fish swim by, and watching the surfers catch waves helps my mind relax enough for the right words, phrases, and ideas to come to me.”
Rebeca Moreno, PR strategist at Phoenix digital marketing agency Colling Media: “I sit right next to a window on the east side of our office, meaning I always get the nice morning sun, sparing me from the afternoon heat. The best thing from my view - natural light.
“My corner view overlooks palm trees, the parking lot, a fantastic courtyard, and several restaurants.
“Whenever I'm stuck on an email or thinking of ideas to pitch to reporters, I like to take a peek outside for a quick reset or inspiration boost. I can also always count on my view to offer a renewed sense of clarity, making me feel like I'm not 'cooped' up in an office space.”
Francesca Baker, communications consultant at expert network And So She Thinks: “The benefit of freelancing and working remotely means I can work from wherever I like. Usually it's my home office in central London, but I love to mix it up. Porto, Margate and Dorchester are recent places I have worked from. I love freedom and flexibility, and exploring new places, as it stimulates me and keeps me energised.”
Caitlin Singh, communications executive at B2B PR agency Definition Agency: “I find that a (sometimes) sunny view and more importantly, daylight in general, makes me feel motivated and far more productive during the working day than being in an enclosed setting where I feel like I’m sat in slight darkness.
“The only downside can be the distractions. If you enjoy people watching and are a bit nosey like me, for tasks that require deep concentration or intense focus, a big open window view can hinder progress when you’re prone to getting distracted.
“Generally though, I enjoy my work from home and office set ups which have lots of natural light and encourage creativity and productivity rather than hinder it!”
Anne de Forsan, founder and CEO of agency StoriesOut: "We have a hybrid working policy of two days remote and three in the agency.
“This is my home office, the place where my inspiration stems from and where my time management gets done properly. Social interactions are dense and enjoyable in our Paris-based agency, fueling co-creation and brainstorming (and troubleshooting). Remote in the Burgundy countryside is more peaceful and allows for more solo creative time, and for more quality discussion with clients and editors".
Dominic and Amy
Lisa Gibson, associate director at digital marketing and PR agency Yours Sincerely: “I sit opposite Yours Sincerely’s two co-founders, Dominic and Amy. It would be career limiting to say that it’s anything other than a good view, and it is definitely a help not a hindrance.
“Being in the office a few times a week means they’re there for random brainstorms (‘celebrity horse press conference’ was a recent highlight - watch this space people…) and to provide a valuable fresh perspective on challenges and ideas.
“The downsides are that they don’t always have as many savoury snacks available at 11am as I’d like, but that’s probably more of an issue for me to address. As views from my desk go, it’s actually one of the best.”
From Manchester to Phoenix, PRs are taking in some amazing sights as they work… but it is hard to beat seeing the smiling faces of your colleagues as Lisa Gibson proves!
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