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‘Strategic investments are being made into setting up communication teams & channels’

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The exchange4media PR and Corp Comm’s 30 Under 30 Awards identifies next-generation leaders in the PR and corporate communications industry. It honours some of the brightest professionals, entrepreneurs, game changers and achievers of the industry under the age of 30.

The ‘30 Under 30 series’ features the winners who share their experiences, trends they have observed in the domain and where they see themselves in the next five years.

In today’s series, we speak to Nakul Ghai, Associate Manager, Global Communications and Media Relations, Wiley.


How does it feel to be recognised and honoured for your contribution to the industry?

I feel humbled and proud for having been recognised and honoured for my contribution to the industry. When I started, I didn’t have any compass to direct my journey but slowly and steadily, as I learned from my peers, mentors, and colleagues, I started to identify a space ‘beyond regular work’ where I could make an impact. I am glad that I took that plunge. Having been in the industry for over four years, I can see that there is a big opportunity for millennials to take on the reins of leadership early on in life. I would continue to encourage millennial leadership and reverse mentoring so that there is no dearth of young, creative, and agile talent and leadership in our industry.

What are the key trends that you have noticed in the past year in the PR and Corp Comm domain?

 I feel that PR and Communications by its very nature is quite dynamic and fast-paced, and with newer technologies, media, and conversations coming into play, there’s no dearth of opportunities to integrate brand storytelling in today’s time.

 The past year has brought a huge difference in how ‘communications’ function is perceived per se, both internally and externally. For quite a long time, PR and Communications was viewed merely as a support function, existing in silos, but today, both organisations and CXOs are coming to terms with the ‘strategic’ aspect of it. Large investments are being made into setting up communications channels and teams and it has almost become a necessity.

 The skills expected of professionals in the industry have also changed drastically. Today, our industry looks for well-rounded professionals with expertise and specialization across social media, strategic planning, content and creative writing, data mining, SEO, SEM, influencer marketing, and analytics.

 An often-ignored aspect of our function is that- we are influenced and impacted by all kinds of international and national events. The responsibility lies on us to guide organisations to navigate through such impactful events and set the right precedence. In the past year, we’ve seen major international events re-shaping the world order, and PR and Communications professionals have certainly rode-tall-in-the-saddle in maintaining their brand reputation amidst such tough and trying times.

 What is that one industry lesson/ experience that you will carry with you throughout your career?

 “There is no substitute for humility. No matter where you’ve reached in life, if you’re not humble and kind, no one will remember you.”

If I look back and reflect on my journey, I have had the fortune of working with the best global brands. What made them even more special is their people and values. Being in PR and Communications, I often get the opportunity to interact with senior leaders and one thing that is common in the majority of them is humility. No matter how senior they are and what titles they hold, it’s good to see that they never let that air come in between and rather focus on making the ‘other’ feel important and special. This wonderful experience will always stay with me, and I will continue to learn from it every day.

Where do you see yourself in the next five years?

Well, as an individual, I don’t like humans and their potential to be put into ‘boxes’. I believe that there’s no limit to human potential and if we put a number and a goal in parallel, we do nothing but invite undue stress, anxiety, and fatigue. Having said that, I am sure that if I will continue to channel my potential optimally, I will certainly be on the right path even five years down the line.

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