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6 September 16

Who am I? Rob Tolan

Welcome to the first installment of our Who am I? series, where we take the time to find out more about our team mates.

This week we hear from Rob, who heads up a number of our consumer accounts – when he isn’t putting his finger in his left ear while brushing his teeth…

Rob has a wealth of industry experience and insights, which he also shares below.


So, without further adieu I introduce Rob Tolan.


What did you want to be when you grew up?

As a child: Pope. Despite not being Catholic. I was really attracted to the ritual and outfits.

In my teenage years, either a lawyer (I love an argument) or a teacher of history and politics.

I was two weeks out from starting at law school when I realised that the law wouldn’t give me the creative licence that actually defines my argumentative style…I am prone to exaggeration. In fact, it was the antithesis of creative license. I decided against being a teacher, as I realised I didn’t much like mine!


Who are your Public Relations / Media / Marketing idols?

– Toby Ziegler

– Sir Tim Berners-Lee.

– Trevor McDonald.

– Jesus Christ (this is a running theme).


If you could be a lead character in a movie, who would it be?

Robin Hood. I was a big leftie, before I lost my way (got old & comfortable).


What is the biggest lesson you have learned in your PR career?

No matter how bad a situation is in the moment, you’ll be laughing about it within a couple of months.


What is something about you that no one knows?

I put my finger in my left ear when I brush my teeth. I have no idea why.


If you were to describe your life by a move title, what would it be?

Made in Dagenham…I actually was; made in Dagenham, England.


What is something that you believe in, but can’t prove?



What are your top three tips for up-and-coming PR’s?

  1. Work hard.
  2. Bounce creative ideas / problems off of people who aren’t in PR / in creative industries. They’re the ones you need to convince, after all.
  3. Stay abreast of changes in the industry and live them. The industry I joined nine-years ago is completely alien to the one I occupy now.
21 June 16

Cannes Lions PR jury: Inside the Jury Room – Days Four and Five

It’s been a long five days in the jury room and today was the day the shortlist had to finally come together.

After a marathon 12 hours of judging on Saturday, we left The Palais late in the evening.

It was the first time the entire jury had come together after individual and small group judging.  This meant it was the first time we had seen the proposed shortlist across all the categories. Probably the best way to describe it is like the process of responding to a new business pitch: you receive the brief, get clarity about what needs to happen then each member of the team goes away and works on the content they agreed to. But then when you bring all that content together and sit down for the first to see what you have got – what brilliance has emerged – you find there is still a long way to go.


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