Article by Luke Carberry Mogan | esPResso Staff Writer
Chris Gillick, a media and content specialist with Peppercomm, spent the day at Marist on Wednesday, April 15, speaking with public relations students about agency life and his experiences in the financial services sector, among other topics.
The Colgate University graduate began his presentation to the PRSSA Chapter membership by highlighting the four industry sectors that his agency specializes in: Financial, Professional, Industrial and Consumer Services. In addition, he listed notable clients such as Ernst & Young, T.G.I. Friday’s, Vonage and Northeastern University.
“The services we offer are varied,” Gillick said, “but my role has pretty much been the same…writing and repurposing content.” For example, he may work on LinkedIn accounts for executives – basic for most participants in the modern job market – as well as video content for employees and consumers alike. Peppercomm performs an audit on a company’s digital footprint, analyzing the content it is providing and evaluating ways to reach a larger audience.
Gillick also discussed the company’s internship program, which received hundreds of applications just for the summer program. “It is very competitive,” he said. “The internship program is a feeder for our full time jobs;” many of whom become full-time employees.
From their first day, both interns and staff are expected to contribute. “You will be noticed if you are not pulling your weight,” Gillick indicated. In order to standout in Peppercomm’s buzzing work environment, an employee should “act like [he] owns the business and knows that mistakes hold consequences.”
Peppercomm holds in-company information sessions dubbed PSU, or Peppercomm State University. Peppercomm executives teach fellow employees to incorporate strategy, creativity and consistency into their work. Stand-up comedy has also been made mandatory for all employees, building confidence in the staff’s speaking and overall communication skills, which is valued in the public relations industry.
Marist senior and PRSSA Director of Finance Shane O’Brien stated, “Chris’ presentation was really interesting, coming from someone who wants to enter the financial sector. I can say that it was great to learn more about a side of public relations we don’t really learn about in our classes.”
In regards to what he looks for in employees, Gillick values enthusiasm, familiarity with the growing use of social media and an ambitious sense of urgency put into work. Unsure if he will stay in public relations, Gillick responded, “If something else comes along and there’s an upside, where I put my skills and knowledge to good use, I am always open to considering new things.” As students are still trying to find a career with their versatility of multiple skills and interests, Chris Gillick continues to do the same.