Rose Allerston is responsible for leading sales and marketing at Smoking Gun, the Manchester PR agency founded in 2010.
Smoking Gun, which works with clients including Munchkin, Old J Spiced Rum, and Pennine Care NHS Trust Foundation, has now moved to a hybrid model of working from home and its office on Bridge Street in Manchester.
Allerston joined Smoking Gun in 2016 as a Senior Account Manager, and previously held roles at Mason Williams and Fido PR. She lives in the Derbyshire countryside
We took a look at her home-working setup.
Where in the house do you work?
At the beginning of the pandemic, we turned our spare bedroom into a study, so this is where I usually work, although I’m sometimes demoted to the kitchen when my husband also needs the space!
Paint a picture for us of the view from your window.
I live in a little town called New Mills in the Derbyshire countryside, so I’m lucky to look out onto hilly countryside. The only issue is in the afternoon when the sun hits and I have to completely close the blinds and feel like I’m in a hole!
We also have the chatter of children playing at break time from a nearby primary school, which is quite comforting.
If you have one, can you talk us through your home-working daily routine?
I’m up early to get ready before my one-year-old wakes at around 7am, then it’s a rush to get him to nursery so I’m sat down ready to work by 8am – or 9am on days I commute to Manchester.
I always like to ‘Eat That Frog’ (for anyone who has read the book!) and tackle my biggest challenge of the day first. So that might be speaking to businesses about how we can help them grow through strategic comms, or writing a piece of thought leadership to raise the agency’s profile or share best practice.
I always make sure I get outside at least once throughout the working day. There’s a lot of walking spots on my doorstep and to grab even half an hour in the fresh air makes me feel so much more focussed – and happy – when I’m back at my desk.
Which tools and technology do you rely on when working from home?
We use Slack which is like an informal chat hub – it keeps the agency chatter and quick fire thinking alive.
We also use Bonusly to reward each other’s achievements, which has become even more important now the team aren’t together every day. But there’s nothing like just picking up the phone to each other or to clients, so that and video calls are still the most valuable tools.
I’ve also been using LinkedIn more and more to reach business, marketing and communications leaders who are working from home.