Jermaine Lawal-Adewale, Intern
As a student who wanted to dive headfirst into the world of employment and adult life yet was worried about what avenue to go down, I applied to the Taylor Bennett Foundation in search of a summer placement that would provide me with greater clarity. This was then followed up with a rigorous 3-day bootcamp that came with being a part of the Foundation, where I and other members of the Summer Stars Programme learnt about the world of comms and all that it entailed, which left me wondering what it would be like in practice. For this reason, I could not have been happier to spend four weeks of my summer with PLMR.
I have kept asking myself two questions over the past month – what led me to consider a career in PR and more specifically, what attracted me to PLMR? While I’m still not overly resolute in my answer to the former, I would say how PLMR is committed to social impact and projects that make a difference was the main selling point for the agency.
One of the first and most important takeaways for me was using PR as a force for good. While this is something that’s sometime misunderstood by the general public, PR can be and is used to help brands to better execute their vision, and the goals that they set out to achieve, often with consideration to how these goals can do good for the public. PLMR works with brands such as Ella’s Kitchen, for example, which has done amazing work to support with child nutrition.
Ultimately, PR is about people, and helping organisations to reach and connect with their target audiences. Client stakeholders are at the heart of the work PLMR undertakes and keeping that at the forefront of thinking is key to success.
This was a message that dawned on me the strongest when it came to working with the Built Environment team. I personally had no clue what the team’s work entailed until I actually got the chance to work with them, but my time there gave me a helpful look into their world, one that heavily includes operation at the local level of government. The team’s work involves supporting the delivery of critical infrastructure projects by liaising with local citizens via consultations, as well as ensuring councillors of local wards are clued up about citizens’ needs and the best way to fulfil them, so that they can ensure the best possible way to execute these projects. The few days I spent with them were among the most informative and sum up my time here quite well – the journey of entering a field and initially not knowing how things operate, before growing into the role and being able to carry out work that is both effective and enjoyable.
Built environment aside, other highlights include working with the corporate communications team to see how organisations work in partnership with their local communities, and seeing how the Energy and Sustainability team went about the pitch process to secure a new client.
I was also able to visit the Coventry (PLMR Advent) and Ipswich (PLMR Genesis) offices, each for a day. With PLMR Genesis, I got to see how the agency works to support a range of clients across the region of Eastern England, reaching deep into the Suffolk, Hertfordshire and Essex areas to provide services in social care and renewable energy among other fields.
Meanwhile with PLMR Advent, I worked with the media team at the IBSA World Blind Games and witnessed the tireless efforts to ensure that coverage of all the different sporting events were delivered, whether that was through match reports or a social media posts.
Overall, experiences with these two branches were extremely helpful in giving me a more rounded view of the way in which PLMR operates in different regions of the country, yet for all the different forms of operation, the branches were tied together by their overwhelmingly positive and welcoming environment.
I’d like to thank everyone for their enduring support and words of wisdom in the few weeks that I’ve been here, as well as the Taylor Bennett Foundation for highlighting this opportunity to begin with. PLMR was such a great place to work at – I’m sure that they’ll continue to employ great people and do good work in the future.