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What’s it like to grow your career at Grayling? We meet Cally Salter, Senior Account Executive, Grayling UK (London)
Cally joined Grayling UK in October 2021 as an Account Executive (AE) and within a matter of months she had been promoted to Senior Account Executive (SAE). We catch up with her to learn more about her role, PR in general, and life at Grayling.
What first attracted you to a role in PR and what were you doing before you joined Grayling?
I started my career at a digital advisory and reputation management firm. Before that, I was on a football scholarship in the United States studying history and political science at university. I fell into PR purely by applying for interesting-sounding jobs afterwards.
I’ve always been interested in current affairs, and PR is a great platform for analysing breaking news and events which impact the corporate world.
Briefly describe your role at Grayling
My role is incredibly varied. It sounds cliched, but no two clients are the same and I’ve done a huge variety of tasks for each one. In this role, I spend a lot of time on activities such as media engagement, content creation, social media, event outreach and campaign management.
Organisation skills are essential as I’ll be tasked with compiling monthly reports, taking minutes, and setting up meetings from business leaders to local councillors. As I’ve progressed, I’ve taken on more challenging tasks and taken greater responsibility in client communications and developing relationships.
What do you enjoy most about Grayling, your role, and/or a career in PR?
My role combines many different elements and I enjoy the sheer variety of work. As I’m just starting out, I have exposure to many different clients from health to public affairs, and from multinational food companies to virtual health start-ups.
Each client comes with their own unique set of challenges, but I particularly enjoy working on accounts that can make a tangible impact in their sector and help solve issues facing society. We also have a new crisis offering the team has developed and it will be really interesting to see how that evolves.
From a professional perspective, Grayling itself is a great place to develop new skills and have a real grounding in the PR and comms industry.
Conversely, what do you find most challenging and how have you met that challenge?
The PR industry is incredibly fast-paced, and you can quickly find yourself under a deluge of deadlines. Daily to-do lists are essential for me to ensure I stay on top of the workload. Getting that work-life balance is essential. You may have to work overtime when big issues arise, but it’s important to take that time back when you can.
What have you learned about yourself as you’ve progressed, and do you feel you’ve put this to good use in your life outside of PR?
One of the really interesting things about client work comes from making connections and communicating your point in a succinct and compelling way. I don’t really think of myself as a great orator, but naturally you pick up different ways of communicating and getting people to engage with your point of view which is just as useful outside of PR. Also, the ability to dissect and engage with events in the national conscious is a really useful skill to have.
Finally, on the personal front, how do you unwind?
I watch and play a lot of football, so my weekends are normally taken up by watching Wolves [Wolverhampton Wanderers] and playing on a Sunday. For more passive activities, I’m an avid reader and watcher of science fiction so anything by Arthur C. Clarke or Alex Garland is usually a nice way to unwind.
Are you looking to enter PR or find a great agency where you can build your career? We’re growing fast across our UK offices, so please check out our current vacancies and we’d be delighted to hear from you!