It’s now been a few days since I’ve returned from the inaugural PHA/5W exchange trip. After a whirlwind week soaking up all New York city had to offer, both professionally and personally, I’ve now had a chance to sit back and reflect on everything I experienced and learnt during my time stateside.
Naturally, since returning to the PHA offices, lots of people have asked me what my highlight of the trip was. Sounds simple enough, but I can honestly say that it’s proven impossible to pick just one! From the moment we checked into our midtown hotel on day one, to the moment we hopped in our cab back to JFK to head home – we had highlights coming out of our ears.
That said, for the purpose of this blog, I have pushed myself to pinpoint the three key things which have really stayed with me since flying back across the pond.
- The 5W PR energy: as soon as we met the 5W Heads of Department for breakfast on our first day, I knew I was going to enjoy my time at the agency. There is a positive energy and enthusiasm which is hard to ignore when speaking to the 5W staff… and extends from the most senior individuals to the most junior. Everyone is so confident, eloquent, and passionate about the clients they are working on. I noticed an immediate parallel here with the PHA ethos however, I think it’s fair to say that although as an agency we pride ourselves on this, culturally we Brits can at times be a little more reserved. It was a joy to sit in meetings and observe 5W’ers of all levels (whether it was a client meeting, an agency-wide brainstorm, or an internal team catch up) come to life when talking about their projects. I have returned to London with an even greater sense of enthusiasm and new inspired ideas for tactics to implement amongst my account teams.
- Cementing relationships: in addition to being incredibly positive, the people at 5W are genuinely an all-round fabulous bunch – very eager to share their knowledge and keen to pick my brain in return. Spending time with individuals who work on a similar client portfolio to me and bouncing ideas around was so insightful, and something which undoubtedly will benefit the way I run campaigns moving forward. I met so many great people within the consumer division – thanks in part to the popular ‘Happy Hours’ which were organized for us throughout our trip – and hope that I (along with the other PHA-ers) have helped to strengthen the foundations of a mutually beneficial, long-lasting transatlantic partnership.
- Experiencing NYC with PHA pals: this blog wouldn’t be complete without a reference to the other three members of ‘team PHA’ who I shared a wonderful week with – Georgia, Miranda and Peter. We worked hard, learnt a lot, but also had many laughs along the way. The culture at PHA is something we are all incredibly proud of and this trip has really reinforced how fortunate we all are to work with such brilliant people day in, day out. I couldn’t have asked for a better gang to spend my time with – seeing the sights, eating our way around the city, rooftop bar hopping, and doing our best cycling through central park.
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