Interview with Pat Gossage, Chairman of Media Profile

Pat Gossage, Chairman of Media ProfilePat Gossage, the founder and now Chairman of Media Profile, talked to me recently for the series of video interviews with heads of Canadian PR firms that I’m conducting for the Canadian Council of Public Relations Firms.

Some of the highlights of the interview:

What makes Media Profile a special place?

“I wanted a firm I enjoyed coming to work at every day. And I wanted a firm that had a pleasant, accepting and respectful atmosphere amongst its workers. A lot of teamwork. Bringing people up from within rather than parachuting from above. I was much more interested in creating a culture than creating a big, successful firm. The culture is here and the success followed.”

On client relations:

“The other thing we stress is being incredibly attentive to clients. We’re good listeners. Somebody once told me that when you are listening to the client your are winning. That’s been a theory we’ve put into practice and it’s been an important aspect of us winning and keeping clients.”

Advice to young people considering a career in public relations:

“The atmosphere in an office is very important. … It’s whether you want to come to work at a firm and whether the senior people are accessible, whether there’s a mentoring program, all the things that will allow you to build on your skills over time. And stay with one firm, which is very important to all of us in public relations, so that we have continuity with our people. That’s what the client respects. The client doesn’t want to be dealing with different people every couple of years.”

You can view the video of the complete interview with Pat Gossage on the CCPRF Weblog.

  • Kiran

    re: advice to young people.

    Being a student who is about to enter the industry in a month, a common message we’ve been told is that we shouldn’t stay at one place for too long. From what I’ve seen from people’s biographies is that many professionals are switching agencies every 2-3 years.

    So my question is: is it possible to stay at an agency for long time? or do you lose your edge/marketability?

  • Kiran,
    Junior people can learn a great deal from working in different settings. However, the route to leadership often is to find a place you like and commit to it.

    Personally, I prefer to hire people who are prepared to make a long term commitment to building a career with one company. That’s how we try to develop our leaders – from within. Many team members are reluctant to invest their trust and loyalty in someone who has a track record of moving from company to company. And successful leaders will tell you that they got to where they are because great people chose to be part of their team.