Viewing posts tagged as "hiring"

What It Takes

Written by Marlo Taylor, partner and general manager, energi PR

Dear aspiring PR practitioner,

Today, I received your application to be an intern at our firm. It was thorough and everything was spelled correctly. You are obviously bright and accomplished. It seems you have worked hard and done well. And your resume went straight over to the pile of folks I will likely never call. Harsh? Perhaps. But in an industry as ultra-competitive as ours, it’s a tough reality. Most resumes don’t get past my inbox.


But what is it that differentiates one resume from another? How do we decide who to see? Who to hire? The most honest answer I can give you, other than a basic understanding of the role, is that I want to know that you want this job. I want to see that when you were learning about PR you were also looking for ways to try out that learning. I want to see that you volunteered to manage the media for a local fundraiser or found ways to publicize a friend’s play or spent time drafting brochures for a small charity. You would really stand out to me if you could provide a few well-articulated examples of attempts you made that didn’t work out as well – and what it taught you about succeeding as a communications professional. Be creative. Look around. Dig deep and figure out where there is a need and go answer it.

In my opinion, passion trumps skill every time. As senior PR people, we can – and are happy to – teach you the technical side of the business, but being hungry to learn and grow can only come from you.

We all hear the same song: jobs require experience but how can I get experience without a job? Frankly, I call BS on that one. There is no end of organizations that are starved for volunteer communications support. If you really want to be a PR practitioner, you will find those opportunities and turn them into the experience you need to set yourself apart.

What I’ve learned after 15 years in the industry is that success comes to those who work hard and have that fire in their bellies. I’ve also learned that sometimes the greatest success and learning comes when you’re prepared to jump into the deep end of the ocean, even if you don’t feel 100 per cent prepared, just because there is the inspiring and amazing chance that you will learn – and become – something new.  Often, it’s the first of many rungs on an exciting and highly gratifying ladder.

So, go for it. Seek those opportunities and eat up the lessons they throw at you. And, I look forward to seeing your resume in my inbox next time around.






CASACOM expands Toronto office, broadens senior expertise

Gavin Davidson brings strong issues/crisis and corporate communications capabilities    

TORONTO, ON, JULY 11, 2012 – Marie-Josée Gagnon, President and Founder of CASACOM, today announced an expansion of the firm’s senior team in Toronto with the addition of Gavin Davidson as Director, Corporate Communications.  An accomplished strategic communicator with more than a decade of comprehensive multi-disciplinary communications in Canada, Europe and Asia, Gavin is a dedicated leader with proven success in both senior agency and executive in-house communications roles.

Gavin DavidsonGavin will work closely with Marie-Josée Gagnon and managing directors Carolyn Ray (Toronto) and Annick Bélanger (Montreal)), to enhance CASACOM’s client services, new business development and corporate communications capabilities.  He joins a senior team that includes Manon Desrosiers, who was recently appointed as Chief Operating Officer, in June 2012, to support growth in the Montreal and Toronto offices.

Gavin has extensive experience in media relations, government relations, corporate social responsibility, crisis management and internal communications. Prior to joining CASACOM Gavin established his own firm, where he specialized in advising clients in the financial services, mining, renewable resources and lifestyle sectors. Previously, he was Vice President, Communications, at Ho Tram Project Company in Saigon, Viet Nam, where he staged a worldwide media launch to announce a $4.2 billion integrated gaming resort development. In this role, Gavin led the government relations team that obtained first full-scale gaming license in Viet Nam, and successfully implemented a sustainable corporate responsibility program.  He also holds a Master of Arts in Strategic Communication from the University of Central Lancashire in Preston, UK.

“Gavin has an impressive track record of creating and implementing high-impact communications programs designed to support overall business objectives,” said Carolyn Ray, Managing Director, CASACOM Toronto. “As we continue to expand our branding, digital and social media, and public relations capabilities, Gavin’s experience gives us an even deeper understanding of the real business challenges facing many of our clients today, particularly those associated with organizational change, innovation and competitive pressures.”

“Through the vision and leadership of Marie-Josée, Carolyn and Annick, the CASACOM team brings clients a fresh perspective on communications,” said Gavin Davidson. “I am thrilled to be joining a firm with a unique culture and perspective that truly values innovation, collaboration, and creativity.”


Founded in Montréal in 2001, CASACOM is an independent public relations consulting firm that helps clients accelerate business success through communications. With offices in Toronto and in Montreal, we bring a deep understanding of cultural differences resulting in unique and highly effective communications strategies. Built on the premise of small houses or ‘maisons’ and founded with a deep sense of integrity and humanity, CASACOM is home to talented, energetic teams motivated by the difference they make every day. As an independent firm, we have the flexibility to provide senior-level account leadership, backed by a strong and dedicated team. We thrive on challenging mandates and are honoured to have long-standing relationships with leaders who put their trust in us.  CASACOM also has access to a global perspective and like-minded professionals through our membership in the Worldcom PR Group, the largest partnership of independently owned public relations firms. For more information, visit

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Candace Huntly
Consultant, CASACOM
(416) 721-6858