ANALYSIS: BIG QUESTION; Is PR bad for your health?’

A survey by Zest magazine reports a high incidence of smoking and drinking in PR

A survey by Zest magazine reports a high incidence of smoking and

drinking in PR



David Davies The Football Association



‘I work long hours and we are on call 24 hours a day, seven days a week,

but I do have a life outside football and working here. It’s a question

of managing your life to deal with situations you find yourself in. I

spent 21 years in TV journalism and managed to avoid working for

breakfast TV or early morning radio. People at the FA do come in very

early or work till late but we wouldn’t do it if we didn’t love it.’



Lee Tomkins Ruder Finn



‘Is the Pope a catholic? There is a lot of self-induced stress in the PR

industry with the tendency to do things at the last minute. People have

to work harder these days. There is more pressure to make money and less

long lunches and client entertaining. But if you are part of a nice

agency team then it can also be a lot of fun. Stress is good when its

controllable, but when it’s not, it leads to drinking too much coffee

and smoking too many fags.’



Stella Hitner The Reputation Managers



‘Most of our staff are members of health clubs and only one per cent

smoke so we are quite healthy. Consultancies have to take a healthy

approach if they wish to keep their people, and in turn their clients.

Staff are not expected to work from 9am to 9pm. You just can’t operate

well at that kind of pace. But the PR industry does attract a certain

outgoing type of person who can play as hard as they work.’



Simon Brocklebank-Fowler Citigate Corporate



‘PR is good for your health. There are long hours but I have worked in

very structured environments in the Foreign Office and merchant banks

and PR provides a greater scope for personal creativity than more

conventional office jobs. There is also greater scope in PR for junior

people to make a serious contribution and be involved in client

relationships. One of the classic sources of stress is people lower down

the ladder not being in control of their own time.’



Noel Privett Midland Bank



‘If you let stress take over, it could be bad for your health. The worst

thing in the world is a PR practitioner who isn’t in control and who

panics. The bigger the organisation, the bigger the issues and

pressures, so you need to manage those irritating crises that seem to

crop up daily without breaking your stride. Don’t let it get you down:

of all the people in the company, it’s down to people like us to keep

calm and level-headed.’



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