Silver Spring, MD-based Strategic Communications Group founder Marc Hausman has helmed his agency from a one-person start-up to a dollars 2.5 million agency in three short years ? and he's done it while fighting blizzards, sweating up a storm and watching Saved By the Bell. Hey, whatever works.
What is your proudest moment?
Marc Hausman: My proudest moment occurs every morning when I arrive at the office. Our first day in business was January 6, 1996 ? right in the middle of a blizzard which dropped 18 inches of snow.
As I pushed my one computer down the road through the snow, I kept thinking, 'One day this will be a funny story.'
What was your most embarrassing moment?
Hausman: My first significant client was a satellite company called IDB Mobile Communications. The VP of marketing had selected us, and I just needed to get the stamp of approval from the CEO. It was a warm summer day and as I rode up the elevator, I realized I was perspiring a little. It quickly turned to a full sweat and the meeting with the CEO didn't go too well. He later told me he thought I had a glandular disorder.
How did you get where you are today?
Hausman: A lot of hard work and the support of my family. I started Strategic when I was 23-years-old with only two years of real-world PR experience. I lived with three roommates and my car was paid off, so it was the time to do it. My parents were very supportive and my younger brother spent his break from college helping out.
What would you like to change about the PR industry?
Hausman:The adversarial relationship which exists between the media and PR people. 90 percent of the people who practice media relations do more harm to their clients than good. Here's a novel approach: try reading the publications before pitching them on a story.
What will be the next big thing to hit PR and why?
Hausman:I truly hope it's a rediscovery of the fact that the world works on relationships. The Internet and e-mail are just tools.
Who do you most look like?
Hausman:Some folks say Adam Sandler, but my fiancee's family is convinced I look like Brian Boitano. I'm not sure if that's good or bad.
What car do you drive?
Hausman:A Lexus GS300, although I treat it like a locker room.
What is your idea of perfect bliss?
Hausman: A front page story in The Wall Street Journal for one of my clients. That hasn't happened yet.
Name one thing about your past that people would be surprised to learn.
Hausman: I've seen every episode of Saved by the Bell.
What is your motto?
Hausman: I'll steal one from former Washington Redskins owner Jack Kent Cooke: 'The harder I work, the luckier I get.'