Bell Pottinger fallout - staff should look North.


There have been reports of the potential collapse of the massive PR agency Bell Pottinger in London. The case has been well-ventilated in the media and concerns a controversial campaign in South Africa, which was examined by the PR industry trade body, the PRCA, and found wanting. The PRCA expelled Bell Pottinger from the organisation on ethics grounds.

I am a personal member of the PRCA and think it has done the right thing. However, I do worry about the effect on individuals working for Bell Pottinger. It is a large business and there will be people completely unconnected with the case who will either want to leave or might be forced to if the business enters administration. To any individual concerned about employment I have simple message…..look North!

There are numerous opportunities in PR outside London. My own firm will talk to you and so will others in the North East, Yorkshire and the North West. In the Northern Powerhouse PR is a growing sector. Our businesses and our regions want a fairer share of the various national debates. Given you have been working in a firm with great contacts and unique experience you will find people who are interested in what you have to offer.

In some cases, the pay may not be as high but in all cases the cost of living will be a lot lower and the quality of life very much better. If you were on the average wage in my firm you would be able to afford to buy a house within five miles of our office, own and run a car. Furthermore, if you were to apply for work at organisations like the Tees Valley Combined Authority (which has some vacancies) you will be at the heart of the Northern Powerhouse and contributing to rebalancing our national economy.

The difficulties at Bell Pottinger will have a ripple effect throughout our sector, improving standards and changing the landscape. That is no bad thing but spare a thought for the team and if you are in the sector help them to forge new opportunities from the dark placer their employer found itself.


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