Nickerson’s Paul Doyle: ‘There’s work to be done and great stories to tell’

This pro shares his take on where the industry is headed this year and what gives him confidence to face the unknown.

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What’s your call to action for yourself and your colleagues heading into a new year? After many months of crisis and mayhem, many are in need of a little inspiration.

Thankfully, the work of the communicator has never been more important and there is lots of meaningful work to occupy industry pros. Paul Doyle, director for PR and communications for Nickerson, shares how he is keeping everything in perspective in our latest in the “Day in the Life” series.

Here’s what he has to say about starting the day off on the right foot and finding success in an era of constant change:

1. What’s the first thing you do every day when you wake up?

Doyle: My morning routine is pretty standard. I’m a big slippers and coffee guy so most my days start that way. I try to enjoy a strong cup of coffee (and the sunrise!) and make my daily “to do” list before my two young daughters are up for the day.

2. Who is the most important person you talk to every day?

Doyle: My wife. We both work from home and are lucky to have demanding and rewarding careers. We also have two young children ages 4 and 1, so communicating about how to balance the demands as working professionals and parents is critical to us being successful and effective in both arenas.

3. When do you plan to go back into the office? Do you want to go back?

Doyle: The health and wellness of our team is priority number one, and our team has adjusted incredibly well to the pandemic and sudden shift to remote work. Our senior leadership team is keeping a close eye on the situations in each of the markets where we had (and still have) a physical presence before the outbreak. With vaccinations ramping up, a return to the office in a hybrid capacity is very much a possibility for Nickerson in 2021, but if and only when our entire team is comfortable.

4. What’s a new tool you have discovered that you just can’t live without?

Doyle: Nickerson is a very process driven agency. We utilize a comprehensive tool suite for media monitoring, social listening, project management, time entry, forecasting/budgeting, contact database, etc. One of the platforms we rely on both internally and in a client-facing capacity is Asana. I’ve found it to be extremely helpful for assigning tasks and forecasting bandwidth for our account teams, which keep us both accountable for results as PR practitioners and profitable as an agency.

5. What was your favorite work memory from the past year?

Doyle: While silver linings of the pandemic might be harder for some to see than others, it provided me the opportunity to continue to do the work that I love from home while spending time with my newborn daughter.

6. What has been the biggest “lesson learned” from 2020?

Doyle: Set expectations early with clients, teams, and media. PR is costly and takes time, and results are not guaranteed, but its value is immeasurable.

7. What’s your No.1 message to clients, co-workers or employees for 2021?

Doyle: I think it’s important to maintain a balance of positivity, empathy, and drive in the year ahead. Everyone is facing different challenges, personally and professionally, but there is work to be done and great stories to tell!

8. What makes you hopeful about the future of PR?

Doyle: Almost every industry faced extreme disruption in 2020, which elevated the importance of communications and scenario planning. The role of PR/communications as critical function for effectively reaching stakeholders is getting the recognition it deserves. I believe there will be opportunities to serve clients in critical and meaningful capacities like never-before, leading to continued growth of the PR/communications industry as a whole.

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