In our third year of partnership with Hill+Knowlton Strategies, we are reaping the rewards of an established relationship with the “UK Consultancy of the Year” (as recognised by the Holmes Report 2016) and are confident that we can provide an environment in which young people from Drive Forward can thrive on H+K’s work placement programme.

Last week we visited H+K London with a group of nine young people from Drive Forward Foundation for an Aim Higher Day. The team at H+K pulled out all the stops to showcase their creative environment and provide an insight into what it means to work for public relations and integrated communications agency.

Starting the day with a continental breakfast on the roof terrace (!), with views of St Paul’s Cathedral, the group then went on to hear about the varied “day in the life of” from different members of the team. This included a conversation with Robyn, a young woman from Drive Forward who took part in the four-week programme and is now approaching a full year of working full-time at H+K on their technology team. Robyn could not recommend the placement highly enough, encouraging the group to apply; “this has been a life-changing experience and I hope that people will continue to work with Drive Forward, to enable other young people that have had a more trying past than most to get the experience within big companies that will help them grow as people and get the future they have worked hard for.”

The most interactive part of the day was the group’s introduction to the process of Creative Ideation, which H+K themselves use to generate ideas for their clients. One of their biggest clients is Adidas, which are currently working with David Beckham. The young people were challenged to come up with an idea to celebrate Adidas’s 70th birthday using a social media platform and David Beckham to galvanise followers. The team at H+K were “bowled over by how engaged they were” said Peter Lawlor, Head of The Hub at H+K, and loved the ideas and diverse perspectives that the Creative Ideation generated.

All nine of the attendees from Drive Forward were inspired to apply for H+K’s work placement commenting on the “very friendly company that I would be very happy to have the opportunity to work with in the future. Innovative and interesting”. H+K will be hosting four individuals on the programme in July. They were so impressed by the enthusiasm and talent of the group that they will offer placements to another four young people in autumn!