The Body Shop’s head of internal communications James Harkness has
been poached by WPP fledgling agency Banner McBride. Harkness, who
leaves this week, is to join the five-month-old internal communications
company as director of consulting.
He joined The Body Shop’s corporate communications division from another
internal communications specialist, Smythe Dorward Lambert, three years
At The Body Shop Harkness headed a team of nine, running communications
with the firm’s office and factory staff and franchisees in 46 countries
around the world.
Reporting to head of corporate communications Adrian Hodges Harkness was
also involved in the publication of The Body Shop’s internal newsletter
Harkness is hoping to repeat The Body Shop’s formula of making employees
’ambassadors for the brand’ with Banner McBride’s clients.
The agency, a wholly-owned subsidiary of WPP, was set up last August by
Mike Pounsford, a former director of the Alexander Consulting Group.
According to Pounsford, Banner McBride’s aim is to combine marketing and
human resources. Unlike a consulting group the company executes its
advice either alone or with the help of sister companies like PR giant
Hill and Knowlton or identity consultant Sampson Tyrrell.
Clients to sign up so far include British Aerospace, The DTI and Lloyds