In our latest company interview, we sat down with our Managing Director, Jordan Greenaway, to discuss the outlook for the PR agency over the next 12 months, as well as the business’ strategic focus on recruiting top industry talent.
Can you introduce Transmission Private?
Transmission Private is a fast-growing PR and communications agency based in the heart of the City of London. It has established itself as the leading provider of strategic communications advice to successful individuals, private shareholders, and their businesses. Unlike the majority of communications agency, our focus is not coverage but credibility.
Our clients often are focussed on ensuring they are perceived in a credible and positive way by an important, but usually small, group of people, whether that is financial stakeholders, suppliers, employees, business partners, or the local community.
Why is talent one of your focusses for 2021?
The start of this year has been marked by significant growth across the agency. We have always prided ourselves on our unrivalled dedicated, one-to-one advisory support for clients. Our clients are used to a level of service that they cannot find elsewhere in the industry. That will always be one of our competitive advantages.
As we expand, it is imperative that we pull together an industry-leading team to support that growth. As well as raw technical and professional skill, this means drawing together a group of people that are strategic, thoughtful, and creative.
How important is diversity to the business?
This is another focus for growth over the coming year. I have always believed that strong ideas and creativity comes as a result of cognitive diversity, people who bring new, divergent, and experimental ideas to problems. Historically, I have never put much emphasis on hiring based on qualifications as I think these are a narrow and biased measure of someone’s skills. We plan to make more in-roads on diversity this year.
How have you structured the business for growth?
Over the last 12 months, we have split the business into two core teams, Client Services and Business Development. As a Partner-led business, every client we support has a dedicated Partner looking after all of their work, providing a single, highly personalised, around-the-clock contact point to access all our services and support.
This will not change as we expand, but as we grow the team, our Partners will be able to draw on more specialist, industry-leading support from the Client Services team, whether that be on digital reputation, Diversity & Inclusion, impact investment, philanthropy, or something else entirely. We are now seeking to make hires to bring in that specialist talent where needed.
We are looking to attract up-and-coming rising stars of the future. I certainly want to hire people who are better than me, and can constantly challenge us to up our game and level of service.
How have you built the company culture so far?
We are fiercely experimental and entrepreneurial. We have always believed that good business is based on taking risks and trying new ideas, and that is an approach that I have tried to encourage across the whole team. We are not going to make in-roads nor deliver a top service to clients if we do not give ourselves permission to experiment and, sometimes, fail. That is natural. But it is important that we learn from the process too.
How are you setting yourself apart from the competition to attract talent?
Firstly, I think we are genuinely creating something completely new and fresh at Transmission Private. For much too long PR has been seen solely through the lens of publicity and promotion.
We think that there is a much more sophisticated, intelligent approach. Lawyers are given permission by their clients to think through difficult, high-profile problems in a considered and thoughtful way. This type of strategic approach is something that communications has sometimes been victim to shying away from.
I think there is a desire amongst PR professionals to build a company where their professional judgement and experience is not only truly respected, but where they are given equal levels of prestige with a lawyer, financial advisor, or accountant.
Secondly, we have launched a truly unique bonus scheme across the business, where a portion of our revenues are set aside for employees and distributed at the end of the year. I believe that all team members should benefit from the growth of the business, and that team members are not only employed by the business but are also partners in its success. We’re all going on the same journey ultimately.
Finally, we are fiercely ambitious. While other companies and agencies are happy to tread water or grow by 5 or 10 per cent every year, we make no bones about wanting to create a large, high-quality advisory business. Not only are we not ashamed of that, but it is what makes us all tick; we’re all aligned on that front within the business.
As a result, I have no doubt that the big opportunities that lay ahead for the company might be a draw for some candidates.
How have you put social impact at the centre of the business?
This is also something that we have focused on over the last 12 months. Previously, our CSR and social responsibility activity was disjointed. I’m a personal supporter of entrepreneurial charities. I’m proud to be a Board Member of FINCA International, the global NGO that provides entrepreneurs in the developing world with the support they need to grow and scale their businesses. But this has always been separate from the business itself.
We changed that this year. We have announced that we will be looking to support allied causes over the coming years both directly and through pro bono advice and support. This will focus on supporting organisations that provide disadvantaged and underprivileged young people with the support and skills they need to set-up and launch their own entrepreneurial endeavours.
We have also announced that we will be giving employees up to 3 volunteering days per year to dedicate to non-profit causes. We are keen to make this a core part of our talent offering.
What makes for a good team?
A diversity of different skillsets and approaches; a willingness to challenge each other in a frank but productive way; and a shared commitment to delivering to only the very highest levels of quality. A team should be collectively pulling in the same direction and, importantly, believe firmly in the value and worth of what they are doing.
What have you learned from recruiting talent in the past?
The right people are the people that want to be part of the journey; they see where you are going, and are genuinely excited by what you are trying to do. They want to be a partner in the growth and development of the business.
Over the years, I have made mistakes. I think the biggest one has been to hire in my own image. A strong team and company needs people with different approaches and personalities. If everyone sees and thinks the same way, you are going to miss some very big icebergs.
How can people get in contact if they want to join the firm?
We are on a fierce growth path at the moment. If people are interested in hearing more about the company or want to informally discuss joining, they can always drop me a line directly on email@example.com. I do try to reply to every email.