Behind the Screens: Meet Senior Marketing Communications Specialist Pam Clarke
Welcome back to ‘Behind the Screens,’ a monthly blog series in which we introduce members of our Cox Media team.
This month, I was joined by Sr. Marketing Communication Specialist Pam Clarke. Pam serves our Southeast market, which spans regions in Florida, Georgia, and Alabama. We discussed the benefits of a positive and collaborative workplace culture, and how that helps us better serve our clients.
Welcome, Pam. To start, can you tell me a little bit about yourself, how long you’ve been at Cox Media and what you do here?
My name is Pam Clarke, and I am the Senior Marketing Communications Specialist for the Southeast Region. I have been in the media industry for almost nine years—five and a half of that with Cox Media, which has been the best career choice that I’ve ever made. I started off in sales – or really kind of fell into sales. I was successful in that role, but also knew my passion has always been in marketing and helping my team.
In my role now, I’m able to work directly with team members, helping them through projects and breaking down barriers that help them achieve more. I don’t necessarily like to be in the spotlight, but I really enjoy seeing other people succeed. Being in a role where I can support my coworkers is very rewarding. So, I’ve loved every moment that I’ve had in this position, even during all the changes we had with COVID. It has been a challenging time, but it also resulted in many new opportunities for growth and innovation across the company.
What words would you use to describe the culture of Cox Media as a whole?
I’d say we’re inclusive, empowering, progressive, and extremely appreciative of our employees. We’ve always embodied these qualities, but they’ve really shown through over the last two years. As an organization, we follow the Empowered People principles– Shape the Future, Champion Inclusion, and Unleash Potential – and I think they really encompass how we all connect with each other.
What about locally – do you have any extra words that that come to mind for your region specifically?
I would say we’re flexible. We appreciate work life balance. Working from home was a huge change during the pandemic but continuing to provide the opportunity for people to work remotely has been really beneficial to our employees – giving them the space to work in whatever way is right for them.
We’re also extremely collaborative. We work together towards shared success, and we always want to be #1, so that’s a motivating factor. We’re supportive of each other, even though we’re across three states. If someone is out, a team member is always willing to jump in to help solve problems or brainstorm new ideas for clients.
You mentioned that you have a committee focused on your workplace culture. Can you tell me a little bit about that?
Yes. This was launched last fall, and there are six of us on the committee – me, Suzanne Banks-Russell, Jessica Baudean, Jackie Tunstall, Lindsay Fowler and Neil Bridgeford. We call ourselves the Kulture Krewe. Fun fact: Mobile, Alabama was the real birthplace of Mardi Gras, not Louisiana, so we felt like we had to pay tribute to that. The Kulture Krewe members were selected by our local leadership because we individually demonstrate the kind of culture that we want to have in our local market. We’re really the heartbeat of our organization – bringing energy to the team and connecting people more, despite busy schedules. Our focus is to make sure that people are appreciated, empowered, and feel good coming to work in our region.
So, what are some ways you keep your team engaged with each other, both in the virtual space, as well as across states?
There are a lot of us! So with that, we’ve had to get creative in finding ways to connect beyond the standard business-focused meetings. We do a digital goodness hour every week where we get together and learn about digital capabilities, give feedback and brainstorm with each other. One thing we’ve carried on from our office days is a Monthly Recap meeting in which we share sales successes, department wins, team shoutouts, and milestones like birthdays and anniversaries.
Once a month, the Kulture Krewe takes the lead in our weekly Thursday afternoon calls. We share employee spotlights and make time for new hires to share about themselves and get to know them better – which is a challenge during normal recap meetings.
We also like to make recognitions fun and inclusive. We do a “spin to win” in which every salesperson who met their goal for the week would then pick a coin with a support staffer’s name on it. The sales team member would spin the wheel for prizes, and the support staff member would win prizes as well. Sure, it’s different spinning a virtual wheel instead of the real one, but it’s still a great way to reward everyone on the team.
Finally, we like to connect in ways that aren’t completely work-related. We’ve hosted virtual baby showers, retirement celebrations, and virtual happy hours. We have a “Water Cooler” Facebook group where we can share photos, inspirational quotes and just all kinds of things.
What would be your advice on creating a positive team dynamic or a positive culture among your team?
I think it’s important to really listen to people. They want to and deserve to be heard, and they want to know that they’re valued and their opinions matter. So, really listening, gathering feedback, or just getting to know someone on a new or deeper level. When you know what makes a person tick, what empowers, engages and excites them, that’s when they can feel fulfilled in their work and unleash their full potential.
If there’s one thing that you’d like our clients to know, what would it be?
We want them to know we are real people. We know clients primarily interact with their Sales Consultant face-to-face, but they have a whole team supporting them behind the scenes working on their behalf. We are ALL their trusted media partners, and we have their business’s best interests at heart. We really want to see their business grow and develop because their success is our success.
Thanks so much for sharing, Pam! We hope you enjoyed our conversation about workplace culture – if you want more insight into bringing more positivity to your business, you can check out a recent webinar recap here.
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