Meganne Tillay

Account Manager - Byfield Consultancy

What is your proudest professional achievement? 

It's hard to pick just one but arranging and managing an urgent press conference abroad in under 2 days is definitely up there. As a result, we secured hundreds of pieces of positive coverage worldwide for our client on a complex set of legal proceedings. However, above all, I just feel lucky to have worked with so many talented colleagues who have helped to make my journey from journalism into PR feel almost seamless.  

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

Give your people a chance to try a bit of everything. Often, at junior level in particular, the responsibilities are limited, and the tasks can be repetitive, which can be so demotivating. At Byfield, all team members regardless of level  get to take part in business development activities, crisis, litigation, and corporate communications work. Giving responsibility to all your people through a variety of tasks and skills, and giving them a sense of accountability, is important for young talent to feel like they're making progress in their careers. 

How are you using AI in your role at present? 

Any PR worth their salt will be experts at turning complex information into digestible chunks for their audience. This is particularly important in our world, working with law firms and legal sector bodies, which means dealing with lots of technical insight (lawyers love detail!). We are exploring different ways to use AI to synthesise large amounts of technical copy and data to help with that process.  

Which social media platform do you use more than others, and why? 

LinkedIn! It's pretty much the only game in town for B2B communications. It will be interesting to see how long that dominance can last, or if something will emerge to challenge it. 

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

Honesty and showing you care. The worst kinds of relationships are subservient. You want to build a relationship which allows the agency to give advice the clients might not want to hear but will trust nonetheless, because they know you have their best interest at heart, and you are trying to help them manage a situation the best possible way. 

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

I think there is a systemic issue around privilege in relation to socio-economic diversity in some elements of the comms industry, particularly at the larger agencies and in the City. Employers want to hire the best communicators, which is obvious for a communications role. Too often, however, this translates into the "most polished" which is usually the product of an expensive education. It's a shame because there are some amazing PRs from many different backgrounds; and some just won't get the opportunities. 

What is the motto you live by? 

As my mother always told me growing up: "There is nothing you cannot do, get or achieve if you put your mind to it."