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Blog post: The challenges of working in comms at SCS (Part 3)

The challenges of working in communications at SCS Group

Eleanore Nash, August 23, 2016

 

A screen grab of Eleanore Nash's story about SCS Group's Mike Jackson, who is taking part in Ironman Wales

Eleanore Nash’s story about SCS Group’s Mike Jackson, who is taking part in Ironman Wales

Part 3: You have to convince your colleagues to let you write an article about them

Awaiting responses from various sources in order to complete various projects, I looked to fill my time by writing articles for the company website’s newsfeed. I had already written an article on Bournville Gardens – a retirement village in which SCS Group had done work, another one on the ‘sky pool’ – a swimming facility which, when built, will link two residential towers in which SCS Group was appointed to manage the smoke control aspect of the building, and yet another about a fire at one of Dubai’s high-rise buildings.

Choosing your feature

Searching for a good topic for my next article, I looked for inspiration in the news archives. I noticed how sporty people at SCS Group are and, remembering hearing that SCS Group’s Regional Manager for Wales and West had signed up to take on the challenging Ironman Wales, I decided to write a focus piece on him.

I began researching his and other members of the SCS Group’s past triathlon results, knowing that some – but not who – had taken part in the Cardiff triathlon, as well as Barcelona and Majorca.

I then looked into the actual difficulty level of the ironman – having only heard an off-hand comment about how challenging it was. ‘Challenging’ is most certainly an understatement. Putting aside the fact that an Ironman consists of a 2.4-mile swim, a 122-mile bike ride and is topped off with a marathon at the end, this course looks truly ruthless (read my full article here).

Fascinated by the man who would dare to take on such a feat, I felt I had to write an article about Mike’s ambitious personal challenge.

Wearing them down

I wrote most of the article with the information I had already acquired, increasing my chances of getting him to agree to it being published. I still needed a few details to complete the piece, though.

Hoping to pass under the radar, Mike let out a half-nervous half-flattered laugh when I spoke to him about the article idea. He was easily worn down however and agreed to a quick interview. My background research into his history as a swimmer and his previous triathlon triumphs gave me the upper hand. Knowing about his past achievements that he doesn’t like to flaunt, I was able to ask him the right questions to gain further insight. He eventually spoke openly about his enjoyment of triathlon, stressing that he didn’t take himself too seriously.

I guess I can now add persistence and stalking to the skills list on my CV!