Camila Holden Ayala

Senior Account Manager - Broadcast Revolution

What is your proudest professional achievement?

I care about trying to inspire young people from diverse backgrounds to join the industry, and so started my own community driven platform, Gals That Chat in 2022. Receiving thank you messages from young girls who I've helped to secure work experience, hearing they are flourishing with mentors I introduced them to, or even just watching them embrace different career options has been one of the most rewarding parts of my career. But talking solely 'work' related, whilst acting as Head of PR at MSC Cruises UK in 2021, and as a one-women band in the UK office, I launched the very first ship to hit the UK waters post pandemic. The entire travel space had its eyes on us as we pulled off a challenging and complex piece of comms that restarted an entire industry. Over 600 pieces of coverage with 99% positive sentiment, full page national print features, regular online news, incredible TV, first-class trade interviews, we could not have asked for more.

In your view, how can PR employers better retain talent?

Employers can be guilty of focusing their guidance on how to be the best for just that business when really, it's about the long-term growth of the individual. Times have changed and people don't spend their entire careers at the same company anymore so, to get the most and longest out of someone, you need to make them feel like they are adding building blocks not only to the business itself but their future self.

What's the secret to good client/agency relationships?

I'm a big believer in 'people work with who they like' and one of the most underrated powers to having good client relationships is being kind. You have no clue what a client is going through behind the screen so try and be the person that brings a smile to their face. It can be a friendly email, thorough and regular updates which serve as reminders that you are one less problem to think about, or even just showing that you want to help to get them a gold star from their clients, internal or external. It's easy to forget that your client is a person and not just a job number. Try to build a genuine relationship - with this invisible tool you will be able to give more honest and strategic consultancy to ultimately deliver more impactful creative campaigns.

If you could change any one thing about the comms industry, what would it be?

I started in PR at 18 and I still struggle to see much talent that looks, sounds and feels like my family, friends and the communities I grew up with. Diversity comes in many forms and isn't a box ticking exercise. It's about curating teams that come from different walks of life, whether that's different socio-economic backgrounds, faiths, life experiences. I want the industry to understand the importance of providing spaces for people to embrace each other's differences and utilise the power of having a diverse team to deliver impactful work.

What is the motto you live by?

A quote handed down from my mum that has never failed me personally or professionally. "If you panic, you don't think, and if you don't think, you're f**ked."