Edna Kissman, who oversaw Burson-Marsteller’s controversial change
to a practice structure three years ago, this week launched her own
consultancy, Kissman and Co.
A B-M staffer for over 20 years, Kissman was joint managing director of
the agency’s UK operation from 1989 to 1992 and founded the agency’s
global healthcare practice, which she headed until 1997.
As B-M’s strategic development director during the mid-1990s, she was
responsible for its abolition of country MDs in favour of regional
practice chairs. With this came the agency’s decision to refocus its
business towards ’key client relationships’ - its big global clients
such as Unilever.
Kissman plans to work with B-M on clients including healthcare firms
Pharmacia and Upjohn and Novo Nordisk.
She said: ’My plan is to work as a collaborator alongside others. I’ll
advise senior business leaders about communications issues. I’ll work
alongside in-house teams, put together ad hoc teams for specific
assignments and work with any consultancies the client appoints.’
Kissman’s agency is independent. She plans to appoint a further staff
member to work alongside her in due course.
Her most recent post at B-M was chief knowledge officer, which involved
overseeing the implementation of the agency’s first intranet. She left
B-M in January and took some time off before setting up her new venture.