Jonathan Russell

Jonathan Russell

REFEREES

PLEASE NOTE SENIOR LINE MANAGER, ACADEMIC OR OTHER REFEREES ARE AVAILABLE ON REQUEST

The Rules of Reputation

A sustainable and effective reputation requires:

  • top down vision
  • profound insight of people (internally & externally), processes and systems.
  • achieving the best balance of opportunity, resources and delivery.
  • creating fit between desired image and customer perception.

The biggest challenge is less about the fact that this requires change, but that stasis will never be a reality or option where reputation management is concerned. 

Interests

Fellow, Royal Society for Arts, Manufacturing and Science since 1998.

I love music, and have travelled Europe and the US for live experiences

I enjoy cooking and have trainged with Rick Stein, Leith's and River Cottage Cookery Schools.

I am a qualified PADI diver, and RYA Day Skipper.

I relax with a good book.

I have recently taken up playing golf (badly).

Summary

Accomplished strategic communications professional with more than 20 years' experience and proven expertise in inspiring, building and sustaining corporate brand and reputation, including international FTSE 100 companies, innovative global start ups, corporate relaunches and local government. Underpinned by a first class MBA with distinction.

Jonathan's experience includes journalism, media relations, marketing communications, internal communications, investor relations, public affairs, corporate social responsibility, stakeholder engagement and corporate brand evaluation and development.

Having worked regionally, nationally and internationally Jonathan formed QuaysideComms Ltd to help organisations and provide senior level counsel and project management skills which can be applied specifically or broadly to your organisation’s communication and reputational issues or opportunities. 

Core Values

The benefit of wise counsel

Commitment to lifelong learning

Clarity

The importance of relationships

The building of trust

Jonathan's experience has taught him to apply and seek to share these values with teams committed to serving their customers.

Qualifications

2004 - MBA

Lancaster University Management School

(see under work history for more details)

2002 - Cranfield Development Programme

BT Development Pool.

1999 - Templeton College, Development Programme

Thames Water Executive.

1992 - British Airways Senior Management Academy, Lancaster University.

1987 - Diploma in Journalism (NCTJ), Portsmouth.

1985 - BA in History & Social Ethics,

University of Lancaster.

Work History

Work History
2008 - Present

Managing Director

QuaysideComms Ltd

Having worked regionally, nationally and internationally Jonathan formed QuaysideComms Ltd to help organisations and provide senior level counsel and project management skills which can be applied specifically or broadly to your organisation’s communication and reputational issues or opportunities. To date, challenges have ranged from counselling a major support charity with its marketing and fundraising communications; providing input to a professional services organisation looking to refresh its approach to business development, customer service and marketing, and helping a niche training business explore how it could move up the value chain, including advice on market evaluation. 

Jan 2005 - Apr 2008

Head of Democratic Services

West Sussex County Council

  • Improved councillor and council reputation for transparent and democratic engagement with its electorate and other key stakeholders and partners. Launched innovative locality engagement products resulting in improved accessibility, transparency and message clarity across stakeholders.
  • Led improvements to scrutiny and governance via legal/constitutional management.
  • Developed online “consumer” brand and product offering includingwebcasting/webstreaming and drove improved use of marketing evaluation tools and data, along with structured client/partner relationship management.
  • Led significant campaigning initiatives aligning multiple stakeholder groups.
  • Results contributed to much improved Audit Commission rating. 
Oct 2003 - Sep 2004

MBA

Lancaster University Management School
  • Postgraduate full-time MBA (awarded with distinction). Top in class in Marketing, Strategic Management, Organisational Behaviour, Strategic Analysis & Modelling.
  • Dissertation and project research into organisational reputation, brand strategy and trust.
Oct 2001 - Oct 2003

Director of Public Relations

BT Retail
  • Led audit and improvements to communications within BT Retail with structural savings and efficiencies over £1 million as part of overall Group strategic developments.
  • Provided communications strategy counsel to Marketing Director and Chief Executive of BT Retail and Group Chief Executive and Corporate Affairs Director  on key marketing communications, media and policy issues.
  • Significant role in the PR relaunch of Broadband policy and products.
  • Secured executive management buy-in to pro-active, reputation-led strategy integrated with customer satisfaction modelling.
  • Improved senior City relationships engagement with media, Westminster, and Ofcom.
Jun 2000 - May 2001

Global Vice President Corporate Affairs

Sonera Zed Ltd
  • A key member of the UK-based start up team for an innovative Finnish-owned mobile services product. 
  • Managed  communications resource and policy across three continents ensuring resource deployment and appropriate cultural/marketplace sensitivities.
  • Led policy and advocacy in relation to consumer issues in emerging 3G market and text messaging.
Jun 1998 - Mar 2000

Global Corporate Affairs Director

Thames Water
  • Ledresuscitationof a troubled corporate UK brand to profitable effect through the development of a clear international corporate branding strategy, enabling the €15bn sale of the organisation to RWE in 2000.
  • Drove radical overhaul of the organisation’s reputation across all stakeholders but in particular media, City, regulatory and political audiences.
  • Developed and deployed a full range of functional skills, including media, CSR, customer, investor relations, above and below the line marketing with strategic vision and innovation.
  • Significantly involved in international business development in Far East, US and South America. 
  • Early champion for developing corporate social responsibility and environmental credentials, deployed to good effect with politicians, investors and customers
Apr 1995 - Jun 1998

Group Director of Public Relations

PPP healthcare

  • Member of core change management team which restructured, re-branded, re-launched and re-inspired Private Patients Plan as a significant challenger brand to BUPA, ultimately facilitating sale of the business to Guardian Royal Exchange for £540 million in 2007.
  • Played central part in energetic corporate turn-around through branding, external and internal PR, governance and product innovation.
  • Ensured an very high profile relaunch, favourably reported in national and international media and positively cited across the main political parties.
  • Developed and led significant and progressive public affairs and advocacy strategy which engaged with senior media and members of the Government and shadow Government on healthcare and long term care insurance issues.
1993 - 1995

Director

DBA Ltd

Helped set up and run blue chip boutique agency specialising in corporate placements, MBOs, and

corporate communication audits, alongside private counsel for Chairmen and Chief Executives.Clients included airlines, retail, manufacturing and motor racing businesses.

1990 - 1992

Public Affairs Manager

British Airways

Worked variously in internal communications, investor relations, PR and product positioning, including the innovative press and marketing launch of First Class and Wellbeing in the Air products. Developed strategic approach CSR and reputation management via work in Kuwait, Kurdistan, Malawi and Mozambique. Winner of two Chief Executive Awards for Excellence from Sir Colin Marshall and one of the youngest managers at that time selected for the Senior Management Development programme.

1985 - 1990

Journalist

Qualified with distinction as a journalist in 1986. Worked, variously, as Chief Reporter for the Surrey Mirror Series (Tandridge), Deputy Chief Sub for the Reading Evening Post, along with a range of freelance national reporting and sub-editing roles, including the BBC and Sunday Correspondent. 

References

References

Andrew Caesar-Gordon

"Shortly after taking over as Director of Public Relations at PPP healthcare, Jonathan recruited me into my first in-house role to help him develop the organisation's Public Affairs function. Jonathan is a highly-driven and decisive leader who operated in a very challenging environment - private medical insurance and a Labour government were never going to be close friends! He is highly articulate and was very passionate about the company's business, and transmitted this passion to his team, encouraging and empowering to innovate. When he subsequently moved on to the bigger challenge of Thames Water, it was a no-brainer to follow him at the first opportunity. At Thames Water he gave me the latitude to develop my ideas for customer and stakeholder engagement and championed their practical application."

Stuart Maister

"I have worked with Jonathan at different companies and in different contexts. He is a highly professional communications leader who has a clear focus on strategic objectives alongside a tough attitude to the delivery of value for any investment made. As a client I found that he also unusually had a very open approach to the different agencies with whom he worked, encouraging a high degree of collaboration and having a clear sense of the commercial imperatives from both sides. This made for a very productive and businesslike relationship in the context of our professional lives. However, because I also like the guy we became friends outside of work."