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20 years; 20 communicators

To celebrate the Company of Communicators 20th anniversary we are profiling 20 Company members in the lead up to our big day.


Today we profile James Gurling, OBE, Executive Chair at MHP Communications public affairs.



Career Highlights


  • 2021 – Present: Executive Chairman, Public Affairs, MHP Communications, one of the UK's largest public relations companies and part of the Engine Group.

  • 2014 – Present: Managing Director – Present MHP Communications

  • 2005 – 2014: Director, Hanover Communications

  • 2001 – 2005: Head of Public Policy & Government Affairs, Three. (Hutchison 3G UK)

  • 1998 – 2001: Director, GPC (now Fleishman Hillard)

  • 1998: Head of Parliamentary Affairs, British Retail Consortium

Why did you join the Company?


James Gurling: I joined the Communicators back in 2008 following a particularly fine after- dinner speech by Channel 4’s former CEO Michael Grade. I remember thinking an organisation that could attract external speakers of that calibre, raise the profile of the profession in the City as a result, and support charitable causes couldn’t be over-looked!


What benefits have derived from joining?


James Gurling: Networking is a natural part of our profession. But the fellowship the Company offers, particularly in this last year or so, is important as is the commitment to supporting good causes.

I have continued to make great new friends through the Company – from all aspects of the communications function – and am particularly pleased that many old friends are now part of this movement with me.


What are the main challenges you are experiencing in communications today?


James Gurling: With Government intervening directly in the economy more than any time in recent memory, the corporate value of communicators is being recognised in the boardroom like never before. The challenge is to ensure that this is not a flash in the pan, and becomes part of the natural scheme of company governance.


To continue to grow as a sector we also have to attract an ever greater talent pool which is why diversity and inclusion are core to what the Company wants to promote.


IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN JOINING THE COMPANY OF COMMUNICATORS, PLEASE CLICK HERE


MEMBERS CAN BOOK TICKETS FOR THE 20TH ANNIVERSARY RECEPTION HERE