Tenure, tenacity and trustworthiness are three words that describe Whitney to a T. Not only does she go above and beyond for our clients, she also helps boost our team up with her valuable guidance and wit. With a year full of amazing milestones ahead of her, take a second to catch up with and jot down some nuggets of wisdom from Whitney!
First of all, you’re celebrating your anniversary with Obsidian this month – happy anniversary! What is one of the most important lessons you’ve learned during your tenure at OPR?
I’ve learned SO many. One of the most important things I’ve gathered is how crucial it is to value, appreciate and acknowledge your team. We have a rock star team of PR practitioners! Each of us is very different in several ways, and that’s what makes us special. Our differences afford us amazing ideas, opinions and recommendations that are invaluable to our clients. We learn from each other, and in turn, we become better people and professionals every day.
Speaking of milestones, you’re getting married this fall (woohoo!). As a well-versed event planner, what has been the most exciting part of planning for your own special day?
I think the most exciting part was designing both our save the date card and wedding website ‒most specifically the website. I enjoyed crafting our love story because while I knew it well, I hadn’t truly articulated it (or needed to) until it was time to build the website. I loved going back to old photos and jogging my memory about our early days of dating. It gave me butterflies! 🙂
Going from senior account manager to director of client services, you’ve seen both sides of how we serve clients. What is one thing you’ve learned from going from working directly with clients to supporting the team?
The word “service” in my title holds a lot of weight. As a firm, we really do serve our clients. Their needs become our needs. And, when they have a challenge, it’s our job to help them resolve it. As both an account manager and a director, client service is a labor of love.
Congratulations on becoming a homeowner! What is your favorite piece of furniture or decor that you’ve purchased for your new place?
I purchased a navy blue accent chair that I love! I envisioned our hearth room with a certain aesthetic, and this chair was the perfect complement.
For burgeoning PR pros: What is the most valuable piece of advice you’ve ever received that has helped you in your career?
Inspect what you expect. When you’re asked to do something or when it’s your job to delegate, you do it with zeal! And, you hold yourself and all other parties accountable for great work.
Let’s WINE down with something we all love to partake in, what’s your favorite brand or type of red wine?
Apothic Crush, without question.
Regardless of your role, what has been your favorite client industry to support? (Nonprofit, restaurant, event planning, etc.)
I’m extremely passionate about education, so anything that allows me to support a school or educational entity, I’m all for it.
For those that know you, know that you’re a crisis management queen! What’s one piece of knowledge or a strategy you take with you to the table during a crisis?
LISTEN first! It’s easy to want to start making suggestions and recommendations to solve a problem when you first hear about it – especially when your brain is somewhat wired to problem solve (like mine). However, I’ve learned the value of actively listening during times of crisis because you have to know and understand all factors before you can develop a strategy. And the only way to know is to open your ears before you open your mouth.