Last night broadcaster and columnist Nicky Marr invited several dozen friends and associates along as she launched her new enterprise. I was delighted to be invited to attend the post-work launch at the new Kingsmills Hotel venue, and it was a lovely evening. Her handsome husband Colin and two lovely daughters staffed the reception desk, and guests were invited to leave a stack of business cards to facilitate their own networking. A grand idea, really.
Glasses of fizz and a great buzz in the room, the formal programme began. After a delightful group “selfie”, Nicky took to the podium and shared plans of her new venture. She had been with local radio station MFR for 13 years, hosting the morning show and getting up at o’dark-thirty for ages. Increasingly, she was finding that she was coming home exhilarated at 1.30am after hosting/compereing/MC-ing awards events, industry dinners and conferences, only to have to get up again at 4.30am. Her weekly column in the Inverness Courier has also been syndicated around the SPP group of papers, and it seemed clear to Nicky, something was going to have to give.
She’s now out on her own full-time, having left her morning post at MFR, and available to host events, provide media training, do voiceovers, and more.
If you have ever attended an event she has hosted, you will know how obviously at ease she is in this role. Just the right blend of humour, familiarity with her hosts, and a business-like ability to get through the programme — your event is in a safe pair of hands, it would be fair to say.
Being new to the area, I first saw Nicky in action at the Highland Business awards luncheon last September at the Dromossie Hotel. She sparkled over the lunchtime programme, and everyone enjoyed the event.
What struck me last night, in the company of many of the people for whom Nicky has been that “safe pair of hands”, was the tremendous goodwill toward her and the speakers’ pleasure in giving her a bit of stick, back.
I was reminded of my mentor, the late Louis J. Cahill, APR, founder of Canada’s oldest PR firm, OEB International (now Enterprise Canada) and a founding member of the world’s first worldwide network of independent PR firms, the WorldCom Group. Early in my career at OEB, I remarked to Lou that he had more invitations and social engagements than anyone I knew. Given he was about 80 at the time, this was particularly striking. Lou advised me, “Laura, you can never have too many friends.”
Lou understood that you support your friends in their new ventures, and, if you ever needed it, chances were they would support you. From last night’s event it was clear: Nicky Marr has done a lot of good turns for people, and when she put out word of her new venture, they turned out for her in droves.
Nicky is going to be a huge success in her new venture — I just hope she isn’t too good at writing press releases, or we’re all going to be in big trouble! 🙂