Rumpus was established out of Paul Evans’ back bedroom in 2004. Since then, Paul and Gareth have gone on to work with a whole host of household consumer and B2B brands. Over the past 15 years the business has won various high profile awards, secured hundreds of pieces of national coverage and established a positive ethos that runs as a core theme throughout everything the team does.
Our content creator sat down with Gareth on a Thursday morning, fresh coffee in hand, something he claims is a necessity to kick start his day.
Hi Gareth! To start off, tell us a bit about your career history. How did you get into PR?
From early on in my career, I always felt destined to be in a people-centric industry. I actually began my journey in the police service in London. After numerous roles over fourteen years, I had fulfilled a successful career, gaining memorable experiences that I’ll hold onto forever. One key skill I took away was learning how essential people and relationships are.
The police gave me strong values of integrity and accountability, and I craved something that allowed me to keep supporting others. When the opportunity came to form Rumpus with my good friend, Paul Evans, it was a move away from what I was used to, but felt like a natural progression. Fundamentally, both industries have the same principles, allowing me to continue my life’s purpose.
What’s been your stand out moment for Rumpus this year?
This year has seen a lot of memorable moments. One that stands out to me is the team’s achievements for our charity and built environment clients in May – we secured three pieces of national broadcast coverage in a three week period for three different clients. This is great for us, as it gives Rumpus exposure as a company that can deliver results.
PR is forever evolving – what’s the biggest shift you’ve seen in what clients expect?
Due to its nature, our industry is always evolving. The move towards digital has increased at an unbelievable pace. It’s now the new norm.
Although positive, the movement towards faster, more immediate communication comes with its challenges. With this speed of communication, clients are keen to see more immediate ROI and visibility of results, and this is something we’ve evolved to provide as an agency. All of this digital progress is fantastic, but we can’t forget the fundamental relationships that can be developed through face-to-face interaction. We offer a strong digital service to clients and more importantly, we create content to generate results that not only meet, but exceed their expectations.
Built environment is a key specialism for Rumpus, what is the biggest communication issue for the industry in 2019?
We cover numerous sectors at Rumpus, and yes, built environment is where we’re particularly strong. Historically as an industry, external communication hasn’t been seen as a top priority, but this is changing.
The sector has progressive digital audiences: from suppliers and customers, to individuals wishing to work in the sector. I can’t stress enough how important it is that all companies acknowledge this shift and develop a comms strategy, aiming to engage all of these audiences. It’s also vital to ensure that internal communications are addressed. It’s easy for a company to say that they’re delivering an external communication strategy, but it’s equally important that their internal comms processes are also in place. If your employees are aware of a clear vision, mission and feel valued, the energy from this is incomparable.
Which companies are your biggest inspirations?
A company’s core values are something that stand out to me as inspirational. I believe our purpose is to add value to others. I think Timpson’s core values really encompass this, offering opportunities to individuals who have found themselves on the wrong path in life. They’re so forward-thinking, as they’ve been doing this for many years now.
Surely we have a duty to help others in whatever way we can, is there anything really more important?
With a PR workforce of primarily under-30s in 2019, how are you evolving company culture to keep this age group engaged?
Oh how I miss that period of life! I’m a great believer that our children are our teachers. This also translates in the workplace with millennials and Gen Zs. It’s all about balance. We carry wisdom and experience, and they carry knowledge and progressiveness which we all need. I really value contribution and love to encourage a culture at Rumpus that gets that balance between work and life. Allowing flexible working is key as it completely supports this ethos. As we evolve, the most important thing I look for is trust. If we all trust each other to deliver the job, then great things will happen.
Rumpus is now in its 15th year (wow!), what are the top 3 things you’ve learnt while building the business?
15 years in a business is a long time isn’t it? It’s been such an exciting period of my life. Irrespective of what any agency owner tells you, it’s not always been plain sailing. We’re in a service industry, and sadly that can mean we’re perceived as a luxury to some companies. We’ve had to ride the peaks and troughs that are accredited to current macroeconomic conditions, which are outside of our control. In line with our values, we always deliver for our clients, and if we didn’t we wouldn’t have lasted 15 years. My top three things have to come from my fundamental life values: integrity, being ethical, and respecting others.
I’ve always aimed to be positive, and positivity means a lot to our agency. It’s something that we reflect on on a daily basis. A positive attitude to everything we do helps us individually and as a team. That’s why ‘Positive Influence’ was an easy choice for Rumpus’ strapline. It allows us to focus on what’s important to us all, shifting the energy in the right direction.
To hear more about how Rumpus can help your business, contact us on one of the following addresses: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org