Chris is Zen’s Relationship Director and leads the technical and specialist side of the agency. A technically trained writer and former journalist, Chris has spent 14 years in senior level roles across the PR and communications fields, including time within a Government agency and within a FTSE100. He’s been with Zen since 2017…
- Describe your job in ten words:
Varied, exciting, challenging, rewarding, fulfilling, vital, new, ambitious, fun, engaging.
- When did you join Zen (and why)?
23 Jan 2017 – I wanted to develop agency experience, return to the corporate sector and specifically join a company that was doing things differently to everyone else
- How do you think everyone else in the office would describe you (in five words)?
Easy-going, affable, ambitious, creative, cynical and opinionated (in a good way!)
- Why did PR appeal to you as a career?
It was the missing piece in my career puzzle – having done in-house for public, private and third sectors, I wanted to add agency experience to my CV and grow my skills and experience. But it wasn’t just any agency I wanted to join – I knew Zen focused on the scientific and technical, more in-depth issues and this really appealed to me as I knew I could use past experience to get to grips quickly and hit the ground running.
- When you were younger, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A war reporter like Martin Bell
- What’s the best thing about working for Zen?
The culture, ethos and ‘family’ values that Zen is grounded in. It’s a really supportive working environment, and that extends to positively impact on home life, which is so valuable as an employee.
- When I’m not at work, I can be found…
I love walking, and especially in the Lake District, so I’ll either be high up on a fell, or at home wishing I was there!
- What’s been your career highlight so far?
That’s a tricky one because there’s been a few. One would have to be dealing with the fallout from a world-famous author stepping down as a charity patron in Scotland out of disapproval. Although clearly not a positive story, it really tested my crisis handling skills! On a softer note, being allowed into bereaved families’ lives to share their stories of the incredible support they received from a children’s hospice, including the creation of a hugely successful comms campaign, is something I’ll never forget.
- What is your proudest moment (personally or professionally)?
It would have to be my kids – so not only the usual cliché of seeing them born, but actually the intelligent, funny, and happy little people they’re growing up to be!
- Who inspires you, either professionally or personally?
My kids are a huge inspiration, but also anyone who does things a little differently and doesn’t just go along with things because that’s the way they’ve always been done.
- And finally, what three objects would you take to a desert island with you?
An iPod – I couldn’t live without music, a teasmade, and my camera.