Answer: Almost immediately after leaving a fulltime post, Vicky reached out to two organizations that knew her and her work. She was awarded free-lance contracts with both almost immediately. One of those contracts turned into a long-term permanent opportunity. A narrowly specialized, IP, global tech company had a vacant PR manager position to fill. Instead of filling it, they contracted with Vicky to build the function and gain visibility for the organization.
Within 6-months the tech company realized how effective she was, across all channels, to accomplish their strategic business goals. She was offered an in-house role as Vice President of Communications based on her performance. She had demonstrated by her personal success that the tactical PR Manager job should be upgraded. Vicky described accepting the offer as a “no risk” decision since she had been working for them already. The company is right-sized for her, narrowly focused and does not have the scope to grow exponentially. Of course, one can never say never. It may be acquired (as a result of her good work) and that may change the equation.
The fact that the company does business in over 95 countries means that Vicky’s location is irrelevant. The job is virtual and requires occasional meetings at company headquarters and some global travel. She has a team of employees and outside vendors. This arrangement has been in place for over 3-years and during that time, a comprehensive program has been implemented. Despite the virus and stay at home orders, there has been no impact on her work. Meanwhile, here are examples of her efforts:
- Social Media to connect with customers, employees, the sales team
- Thought Leadership: articles (to enhance brand awareness), surveys, presentations (subject matter experts)
- Presentations by key executives enhancing their reputation as industry leaders and contracts with leaders of speaker bureaus.
Vicky is enjoying this new phase of her corporate communications career. Essentially, she created her job as a communications strategist. She is making full use of all her years of marketing and communications experience in this decision-making role. She now has several staffers reporting to her remotely, reflecting a trend which is not uncommon as teams are hired and geographically dispersed. One of the outcomes of the pandemic is a trend toward working remotely. It seems Vicky is just ahead of the curve.