In public relations, our team works with tight deadlines, high expectations and sometimes odd hours. Perhaps it’s no surprise that PR has consistently been voted in the top 10 most stressful fields.

In our industry, we know there’s an impulse to be “always on.” But taking a break to unplug is good for business, and when employees trust their team to handle the work when they’re out, they return rested and ready to dive back in.

That’s why, at Gavin, we strive to create an environment that supports a healthy work-life balance. We know our team works hard and is committed to creative ideas that prove Main Street can compete with Madison Avenue, and so it’s important to recognize opportunities to decompress.

In the office, perks like quarterly chair massages, our anniversary trip, the occasional free meal and time to play with puppies provide a break from tight deadlines and client pressures.

Gavin staff trip

Our commitment to our priority core value of “We Culture” also provides an opportunity to step back from the fast pace of our industry, ensuring we think before we create and stay true to our role as collaborative problem-solvers.

Gavin’s mission to prove that Main Street can give Madison Avenue a run for its money sets us apart from other agencies. Great ideas can come from anywhere — and oftentimes that means they strike outside of working hours. Creativity is regenerated through involvement in the community outside of work, and even through vacation time. When we take time off, we ask that the team truly unplugs.

Our commitment to work-life balance and time for R&R extends to our progressive benefit and leave policy. We know that home life is a priority for many of our team members as they grow in their careers, and we’re happy to support that.

Of course, as we recognize National Stress Awareness Day, we know there are some days where unplugging just isn’t an option. When the “work” part of work-life balance demands the reigns, here are a few ways to thrive.

 

1. Make A Plan

Much of successful crisis management — and communications overall — comes from getting control over a situation. We help companies craft a plan for successfully navigate any situation. Best practices include being available when you say you will for client and media calls and executing deliverables swiftly and smoothly.

2. Compartmentalize

Knowing when to respond is key to how you respond. Often, it is better to process the situation before jumping in. Pausing for a moment and assessing the situation ensures that the team isn’t flustered as you decide your next steps.

3. Use Stress to Your Advantage

Studies show how you can make stress your friend rather than an enemy just by shifting your perspective. Taking the physical symptoms of stress and using them to positively impact your work can be a huge help when dealing with crises. When channeled correctly, stress can fuel efficient decision-making and decisive action, allowing you to shine. 

 

Prioritizing employee health and balance as part of the company culture can be a risk in a highly demanding field like public relations — or in integrated communications as a whole. As an executive, I can vouch I’ve seen the rewards in happier, more productive employees. This commitment allows the team to function more smoothly and to produce greater outcomes for our clients.

As we reinforce this commitment, I am hopeful that Gavin’s approach will become mainstream for companies across our industry and beyond.

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