In our Talent Talk interview this month in Sydney we spoke to Ava Lawler, Managing Director of Weber Shandwick, and asked her a few questions about life at Weber Shandwick, and what she thinks will be the big PR trends for 2015.
Name: Ava Lawler
Role: Managing Director
Number of staff: 45 consultants, including digital studio
Key clients: Nespresso, ANZ, MasterCard, Zoetis, Nutricia/Danone, AstraZeneca, Ocean Spray, G4S, NetApp and Kindle
What sets Weber Shandwick apart from the crowd?
Weber Shandwick’s global footprint, client focus and service innovation has guided some of the most engaging PR and content campaigns in Australia and worldwide.
Our innovative approach to building strong global client experiences was recognised by Harvard Business Review as far back as 2008. Since then our Global Client Experience program has evolved to include 52 of our most valued clients from around the world.
When naming Weber Shandwick as 2014 Global Agency of the Year, The Holmes Report highlighted Weber Shandwick’s “consistent geographic excellence” in addition to the firm’s outperformance of the market. The firm’s innovative digital capabilities, including Mediaco, Weber Shandwick’s award-winning content publishing and distribution offering, were highlighted as well. Weber Shandwick’s “commitment to creative excellence” across the globe was also noted.
Weber Shandwick Australia has also been recognized by the industry as a ‘best in class’ organization in Australia. During 2014, the local operation had a record number of 10 award wins, including being named Public Affairs Asia’s Australian Agency of the Year and having one of its campaigns acknowledged by the Holmes Report as one of the Top 50 global campaigns of 2014. It also received the IPRA Global Award for Crisis Communication for the Danone/Nutricia Contamination Crisis.
Our promise to be engaging always is delivered through the fusion of our creative digital studio and team of writers, storytellers and relationship specialists.
Can you define your culture?
We have a fun, collaborative, results-focused culture.
What do you look for in great talent?
The qualities I look for are:
Intellect, analytical capabilities and ability to learn quickly
Positive attitude and resilient approach
Passion for public relations, the media, branding and effective communications generally
What do you see as some key emerging trends in the communication industry in 2015 and beyond?
Key trends we are focused on include:
Helping our clients leverage the power of visual influence
Harnessing the full capabilities of our digital studio to deliver engaging content and assist clients in their journeys to become brand publishers
Delivering fully integrated campaigns that maximize the impact of campaigns across earned, owned and paid channels
Increased focus on data analytics and research to better inform and measure campaigns.