Helen Elson, senior account manager Approach

A day in the life of – Helen

The days of endless boozy lunches and schmoozing clients may be well and truly over (if they ever existed), but the working day of a modern PR professional can still be interesting, fun and varied – despite the lack of champers. Here’s a sneaky insight into a day in the life of an Approach senior account manager.

9.15 Arrive in the office to go through emails and check in with the team. Twice a week we get together for a spring, so-called because we talk through our workloads, plans, hopes and dreams to ‘springboard’ into the day. If 9.15 sounds like a leisurely start it is preceded by getting two small children ready for the day and dropping them off at school and nursery, so rest assured the morning isn’t spent musing over a coffee and croissant!

9.45 It’s essential that we’re on top of current affairs so a scan of the morning’s news is one of the most important tasks of the day. It’s not just the nationals like The Guardian and FT, or regional media such as Yorkshire Post and the Telegraph and Argus, I need to be up-to-date with. Each day I receive bulletins and newsletters from the trade press, from Beverage Daily to European Cleaning Journal.

11.00 Out of the office again for a client meeting. This is one of my favourite locations as it’s a real-life chocolate factory in the Yorkshire Dales. The smell of chocolate and mint that hits you when you walk in is simply delicious! We discuss the latest coverage book, forthcoming activity including journalist site visits and the latest company news.

12.45 Return to Ilkley and lunchtime is spent at a networking event supporting a new local venture – The Ilkley Meeting Room – a meeting room and hot-desk space in the centre of town. It’s a great chance to meet other businesses, find out whether the space will be useful to us and show some support to other local companies.

14.00 Back at my desk and great news awaits that my pitch for a thought leadership piece in a chemical trade title has worked a treat! Now there’s just the small matter of writing 1,000 words about the latest rules and regulations to hit the industry. That’s a lot of work but it will be more than worth it to see that double page spread in one of our client’s key target media. Best get to it!

16.00 Time for a break from the absorbing but slightly intense world of technical writing and the perfect chance to put together a PR schedule for a property management client. It will be a mix of CSR stories, service and company news and planned features spanning the next six months. Life is unpredictable so some of our plans will inevitably change but to have a good idea of what we’ll be doing for the foreseeable future is incredibly comforting – particularly if you’re one of life’s forward planners!

17.40 Shutting down for the evening. It’s been a busy but productive day and it’s great to be able to tick a few items off the to-do list. One of the best things about this job is that no two days are the same and the week can finish quite differently from how you expected it to. There’s certainly never a dull moment working in PR.

Off to pick up the small children again. Now the work really starts!

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