Account Director – Issues & Crisis Comms

The team

When faced with a dispute, even the strongest personal or corporate reputations are at risk. The Disputes Unit is a dedicated practice within Portland that manages that risk for its clients, in high-profile and high-value cases across multiple jurisdictions and languages. Our work extends beyond the court room to encompass complex political and financial considerations.

We work alongside lawyers and advisors to ensure that our clients’ wider interests are protected and their legal and commercial strategies are reinforced.

Led by a former barrister, Portland’s specialist and experienced disputes team is diligent, discreet and results-driven.


The role

We are seeking a disputes communications Account Director with crisis and issue management media expertise.

As an Account Director  you will be integral to the Disputes Unit’s long term planning and growth. You will be an expert in your field with strong media relationships and the ability to support the senior team with the management of clients. You are a keen problem solver, generating excellent results and giving strong strategic advice.


Responsibilities will include:

  • Giving broad-ranging creative and strategic advice to clients and teams on issues relating to specific client programmes and wider PR and marketing issues
  • Actively participating in new business development including pitch meetings, presentations and proposals and identifying prospects and representing the agency in new business meetings
  • Contribute strategy and solutions to new business efforts and proactively introduce new ideas to improve our offering.
  • Leading an account team to develop client proposals and implement the PR activity
  • Proactively building relationships with key opinion leaders, media, professional associations, online influencers and other relevant third-parties.
  • Attending and promoting client events to the media
  • Establishing professional relationships with colleagues in other offices
  • Leading in brainstorms and create workable programmes for new business and existing clients commissioning market research
  • Lead on the development of new business pitches including pitch responses with the input of the senior team
  • Keeping track of impending deadlines and ensure all work is completed in a timely manner
  • Ensure all client work is completed on time and within budget
  • Ensure accurate invoicing for all clients
  • Leading in the management, analysis and evaluation of client campaigns
  • Creating and developing a functional team and account structure and helping to identify and recruit strong candidates in London as the business grows
  • Directing and mentor junior account members; providing quality control and overseeing team assignments

Skills & Competencies:

  • Minimum of seven years’ experience in a communications agency is essential with disputes/crisis/issue management experience
  • Strong media relations skills. Proven relationships with business national journalists is ideal. Need experience of proactive pitching and active rebuttal with high profile news media
  • Commercially driven and ambitious to help us to develop a talented team in a fast-growing consultancy
  • Excellent time management and multi-tasking skills, and the ability to work in a fast-paced, high pressure environment, managing your own work and that of others
  • Strong attention to detail.
  • Enthusiasm and a ‘can-do’, proactive attitude with the ability to interact with and gain the trust of senior clients
  • Supervisory responsibilities; identifying staffing issues and needs, adopting or creating processes, documentation, and templates to meet those needs
  • Strong experience in digital strategies, management and content creation
  • Excellent written and communications skills.  Experienced in copy drafting op-eds/ press releases/ pitch documents

Due to the high volume of applications we receive it is unfortunately not possible to respond directly to all applicants, only to those whose candidacy is being pursued. In addition, the length of the recruitment process varies based on the vacancy needs. Traditionally, the process takes approximately 2-4 weeks. Therefore, your patience is greatly appreciated.

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