Spotlight On... Craig Dowling, Chief Agent of AgentC

Spotlight On... Craig Dowling, Chief Agent of AgentC

Welcome to the Telum Spotlight, an ongoing series showcasing people working in the PR and Communications space, freelancers and those launching their own boutique agencies. Today we shine the Spotlight on Craig Dowling in Auckland. Craig is the Chief Agent at recently-launched AgentC and previously worked as the Head of Corporate Affairs at IAG New Zealand and Head of Communications at energy company Mercury.

By way of Introduction:
AgentC was established mid-2021 to offer bespoke reputation strategy development and counsel. Craig serves as the company's Chief Agent, and admits it’s not your typical agency. Unsticking the stuck is one of AgentC’s superpowers and the niche Craig sees a need for. As well as focusing on reputation building (and repair), he offers counsel on dispute resolution and advocacy for those who are disadvantaged by power imbalances. In this regard, AgentC “plays well with other agencies as well as legal firms, lawyers and their clients”, Craig says.

First job:
My first paid job was collecting trolleys at the local supermarket. My first relevant job was as a contributor to the student magazine at university.

One thing you would change about communications industry:
I’d seek to change the industry’s association with manipulation. Communications needs some PR, as people are rejecting being communicated "at", rather than "with".

Most admired person in comms:
The quiet operator. The intuitive, diligent, passionate and loyal person who is in any good team. And Mike McClintock from Veep.

Most admired journalist:
New Zealand radio broadcasting icon Kim Hill. She’s smart and incisive on just about any topic, and razor sharp funny.

Advice to anyone starting out in comms:
Treat everything as an experience to learn from.

Essential daily reading:
The nutritional information on my cereal du jour.

Favourite book:
Mr Pip by Lloyd Jones.

Favourite film:
LA Confidential.

Dream holiday (we know, they’re all dream holidays at the moment):
Any place by the sea with an interesting cultural heritage. Bali would be nice.

Clickbait fact about you:
I’ve a rather large, but hidden away tattoo based on a jungle design I saw on a takeaway coffee cup.

Quotable you (what’s your most often used saying or quote?):
“The way to gain a good reputation is to endeavour to be what you desire to appear.” - Socrates.

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