International Women’s Day 2019: From Five Female Perspectives

by Catriona Quinn

Wednesday, March 6th, 2019

Some thoughts on #IWD2019 from the women at Holyrood PR

TO MARK this year’s International Women’s Day, the women of Holyrood PR have taken some time to reflect on their experiences, hopes and aspirations for the PR industry.

From five different perspectives (a bit like the Spice Girls), we’re exploring #GirlPower in PR, what we’d like to see in the future, who inspires us and what motivates us.


Katie Hogg – Senior Account Executive

Katie Hogg is a member of the award-winning PR team at Holyrood PR agency in Edinburgh, Scotland

How do you feel about working in PR right now?
The PR industry is fast paced and extremely vibrant. No two days are ever the same! As a woman working within the sector, it is great to see others paving the way and heading up successful organisations. It’ll have taken them a lot of sweat, tears and graft to get to where they are. These are the women I look up to when it comes to my own career – persistent, driven and hungry.

What would you like to see in five years?
The industry is changing and each agency is completely different. What I would like to see in the next five years is more flexibility for working mums and dads – there needs to be balance.

Who inspires you?
There are so many women in PR that I find inspiring! If we are talking on a more local level then I would have to say Sarah Howden. She’s a one-woman band and is killing it!

What motivates you?
When I’m a bit down or had a hard day, what really motivates me is a good Instagram scroll! Looking at what other ladies are getting up to and what other PR professionals are posting gets my creative juices flowing. Instagram is my second home!

Izzy Stiven – PR Assistant

Izzy Stiven is a member of the award-winning PR team at Holyrood PR agency in Edinburgh, Scotland

How do you feel about working in PR right now?
I’m sure the majority of people working in PR would say their favourite thing about the job is that every day is completely different – the variety in the role is what makes it so exciting and the hours fly by! You’re constantly presented with opportunities to be creative and there’s a great amount of job satisfaction in seeing everything come together to deliver a great result for a client.

What would you like to see in five years?
I do feel the industry has come on leaps and bounds when it comes to representation but there’s still work to be done – 60% of the sector is female but yet men still occupy 62% of boardroom seats. That said, when you look at the success of influencer marketing – an incredibly lucrative industry has been born out of an app and it’s one that is staggeringly dominated by women.
As a woman starting out in my career, I’m really excited to see what the future hold for the PR industry. The sector is constantly evolving and reacting so the next five years are bound to be exciting!

Who inspires you?
My friends, definitely. I think female friendships are really important and I’ve been lucky enough to grow up with a great group – they’ve all gone into completely different careers and they’re all absolutely smashing it!

What motivates you?
Used correctly, social media can be a really motivational platform. I try to make a conscious effort to follow accounts that inspire and motivate me – @laurajaneauthor is a particular fave, she’s a great example of a woman who’s killing it in her career and not afraid to shout about it (plus her house is #interiorgoals).
Other than that, blasting a bit of Dolly Parton or Cyndi Lauper never fails.

Catriona Quinn – Account Executive

Catriona Quinn is a member of the award-winning PR team at Holyrood PR agency in Edinburgh, Scotland

How do you feel about working in PR right now?
Despite the way we have been portrayed in the past, being a woman in PR is a lot more than flicking through glossy magazines and Ab Fab-style boozy lunches. It’s not that glam and it’s definitely not easy. But the PR industry is an exciting place for women – it’s empowering, forward-thinking and dynamic. All the women I have been lucky enough to work with are total grafters and can show you the results to match.

What would you like to see in five years?
As the theme for this year’s International Women’s Day is #BalanceForBetter, I think it would be nice to see a more even divide of males and females in the sector. Working in a gender balanced office at HPR brings a real mixture of creativity and ideas, which helps us to deliver better results for both our clients and our organisation.

Who inspires you?
It’s a bit cliché but my mum is probably my biggest inspiration, especially when it comes to my career. I really have her to thank for my work ethic – and always giving me a gentle push (read: shove) in the right direction. Thanks, mum!

What motivates you?
I’m such a fan of reward as motivation. At the moment I’m finishing my Masters dissertation and I have to keep giving myself small rewards for reaching word count milestones. I always try to envisage how I’ll feel when I finish it and keep that image in mind when I’m struggling.

Angie Muzyka – Digital Account Executive

How do you feel about working in PR right now?
The creative freedom and working with like-minded people who have an incredible work-ethic is extremely rewarding. You never know what project awaits you around the corner and each day provides opportunities to prove to yourself that – yes, you can.

What would you like to see in five years?
The world of PR is constantly changing and professionals within the industry are on a never-ending roller coaster ride of expanding their skill sets. It’s rewarding but also hard. If you have trouble separating your work from your personal life it can be really challenging. More focus on mindfulness in offices and increased openness to flexible working is a shift I’d like to see.

Who inspires you?
As heart-breaking as Amelia Earhart’s (first female aviator to fly across the Atlantic Ocean solo) story is, her boldness, fearlessness and desire for exploration is something I look up to.

What motivates you?
Meditation. As out there as it sounds, simply taking some time in the day to ground yourself and clear your head really helps in gaining perspective. Once you transcend the stress brought by whatever task you’re working on it’s easy to get back in the game and find joy in your work.
Beyond that, my colleagues provide a continuous stream of motivation to me every day. Seeing everyone’s hard work and celebrating each success no matter how big or small keeps me inspired and ready to take on new challenges.

Catriona Conway-Mortimer – Senior Account Executive

Catriona Conway-Mortimer is a member of the award-winning PR team at Holyrood PR agency in Edinburgh, Scotland

How do you feel about working in PR right now?
I love working in PR as you can put to use such different sets of skills – from research, to writing, to coming up with wacky creative ideas and working out the logistics and the resources needed to make them happen and bring them to life. The varied elements of the job keep it dynamic and mean that it’s never boring!

What would you like to see in five years?
When I was in school I was super into playing football, as were a group of girls in my year group. But the pitches had a timetable saying that only boys could play, which left us with no leg to stand on when fighting a bunch of 12-year-old boys for the pitch. I was so angry that as soon as I got home, I wrote a pretty firm letter to our headteacher highlighting the injustice. I was so proud when the next day a new timetable was up on the wall, but also felt annoyed that, by default, the boys had had the upper hand. I think that if in five years’ time we can get to the stage where there are no more ‘everyday inequalities’ needing to be called out, that’ll do me just fine. No pressure, world.

Who inspires you?
As a young girl it was always Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
Ahhh, let’s not lie – she’s still the one.

What motivates you?
Knowing that the more I work, the better I’ll get. ‘Do better and do good’ is pretty much my motto (that I’ve just made up now…), as it’s important not just to focus on bettering yourself in your career but make time to support others along the way, too.

We’re proud of every member of the team at Holyrood PR  – if you’d like to work with people like us, get in touch

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