Last summer, I interned with Quiller Consultants, a communications and reputation management agency based in London, UK. It was the fourth and last internship of my integrated professional year. Previously, I have worked for the Singaporean logistics company YCH, the global C-suite consultancy Teneo in Dublin, and the communications agency Newgate in London.
Quiller was formed in 1998 by John Eisenhammer, a former journalist with The Independent and Jonathan Hill, a former British civil servant. Originally, the company was set up as a specialist public affairs (PA) agency. I joined Quiller during a period of fundamental organisational change. In recent years, an increasing number of agencies in the PA and PR sphere have realized that clients prefer a “one-stop-shop”. That is to say that clients prefer to work with one agency on all fronts rather than working with several agencies on a project basis. That is why Quiller has changed both its outlook and organisational structure.
The new CEO hired a group of recent graduates and young professionals from diverse backgrounds. In the office, which consists of around ten staff members, an impressive nine languages are spoken. This allows the team to work with clients from around the globe. In addition, the company can now advise its clients not only on public affairs but also on more corporate projects. Currently, the client base includes leading global brands from the retail, financial, nutrition and energy sector.
Despite having joined Quiller on a temporary contract, I received the title of Junior Consultant. The main difference between a regular intern and a Junior Consultant is that the latter also works directly with clients. In this sense, my job at Quiller came with more responsibilities but also more freedom than my previous roles. My tasks at Quiller included media profiling, general research, creating presentations, transcribing interviews, and preparing briefings.
My internship with Quiller was very intense, yet very rewarding. Being able to attend more client meetings meant that my work felt relevant and intellectually stimulating. Working in a smaller team was a key advantage at Quiller. It meant that my contributions had a bigger impact and I was able to be more involved in projects.
I was also delighted to see that it tied in seamlessly with my studies in International Relations and Public Policy. I have always been convinced that a multidisciplinary education has many advantages and it is encouraging to see that my expectations are fulfilled so early on in my career. It has confirmed my belief that being professionally successful in today’s world means working across borders and connecting experts from all disciplines.
Sören Reischert is an Atlantis student, completing an MA International Relations degree at the Maxwell School in Syracuse, NY and a Masters in Public Policy at the Hertie School of Governance in Berlin.