He's a former rock star (well, sort of), avid snowboarder and his
biggest fear is forgetting his girlfriend's birthday. Meet Michael
Finnigan, director of PR at CosmoCom.
Describe the company you work for CosmoCom is a call center software
provider. We provide large enterprises and service providers with an
all-IP (Internet Protocol) communication services platform, which allows
customers to contact customer service agents through all points;
telephone and internet, live and message-based, fixed and wireless.
What do you do? As director of PR, I am the company's spokesperson. I
oversee CosmoCom's corporate PR strategy as well as manage the company's
relations with the analyst community.
What was your best stunt? An April fools joke that got out of hand. A
peer of mine and I once created a fictitious analyst report that stated
our company was being sold to one of our competitors and that the entire
management team would be relocated to the other company's headquarters
on the West Coast. We fabricated the e-mail address to appear that it
came from the analyst firm and sent it to our boss, the VP of marketing,
who forwarded it up the chain. It eventually reached the CEO, who
contacted the analyst firm to find our sources on the report. We were
nearly fired. It's now a legendary story at the company.
What's the most daring thing you've ever done - in or out of work?
That's tough. It could be physically daring: skydiving, mountain biking
in Moab, UT, forgetting my girlfriend's birthday. Or it could be
emotionally daring; quitting a very comfortable job a year ago to travel
or forgetting my girlfriend's birthday. I've done all of these and all
can be considered very daring by most.
What is the biggest item you've ever put on expenses? I'm pretty
careful, but I'd have to go with the red convertible mustang that was
rented while in LA. Hey, it was the last available midsize.
Write the headline for the story you would most like to read in PRWeek
'President Bush's PR spokesperson quits after learning of Bush's drunken
night of partying with Vice President Cheney.'
Name one thing about your past people would be surprised to learn I was
formerly the lead singer of a rock band, one that gained some notoriety
in the New York area before we broke up in the mid '90s. Ripped jeans,
loud nights and an abundance of intoxicated audiences now paints a sharp
contrast to my day job. It's a lot easier to impress intoxicated
Which historical figure would you most like to represent? Gandhi. That
man certainly knew how to get press mentions. Though I wouldn't have
been around to partake in the hunger strikes. And also Walt Disney. A
big dreamer with the guts to back it all up and the energy that would
certainly be contagious.
What is the secret of your success? Work for something you believe in,
are passionate about, and above all, have fun with. All the money in the
world won't make you happy doing something you dislike. Most people who
truly excel at their work do things they love. This is the secret behind
my success. When I no longer have fun doing this, I'll move on to
something else. Maybe there's a trapeze somewhere under a big top with
my name written on it.