A question of comms: Gillian McGill

Discover what Gillian McGill, Global Head of Internal Communications at Aviva likes most about working in comms and why she thinks your job should scare you. Honestly!

Gillian is the latest practitioner to sit in my #questionofcomms hot seat.

Want to take part? Here are the questions you need. I’ll hand you over…

1) When did you know internal communication was what you wanted to do?

When I was in an operational role and saw the impact knowledge and engagement had on how people felt about the job they do every day.

2) What do you like most about working in this field?

Making a difference. The creativity. Connecting together the whole agenda. Seeing your thinking come to life in the organisation. Creating pride in people!

3) What’s the best career advice you’ve been given?

If your job doesn’t scare you every day, you’re in the wrong role.

4) What advice would you give someone thinking about starting a career in comms?

Be brave.

The combination of data and instincts makes the best comms leaders.

5) What does a typical day or working week look like for you?

There is no typical day or week – that’s why I love it. Can be anything from advising leaders, developing plans, talking to other businesses, engaging with our people at the front line, crunching through change comms, engaging global comms leads and hacking a great comms plan. So varied!

6) Name a book you think every communicator must read, and why you’ve chosen it

Start with why, Simon Sinek. It will help you really challenge the purpose of what you do, of what your business does and what your people do. A compelling read.

(Great recommendation Gillian, having seen Simon speak in person a couple of months ago, I couldn’t agree more – Rachel).

7) What’s the one thing you couldn’t do your job without?

The creativity and collective minds of a fantastic team.

8) What is the future of internal communication?

The powerful combination of digital channels, engaged leaders and powerful conversations. There is a balance to be had and if you’ve can create that, the opportunities are endless.

9) Where can people find you online?


Post author: Gillian McGill.

Thank you Gillian. Want to sit in my #questionofcomms hot seat Here are the questions you need.

Further reading on the All Things IC blog 

The value of a strong employer brand strategy
How to communicate your personal brand
How to get a new comms job
How communicators learn about comms
Bust the jargon – explore my glossary of internal communication
Ten of the latest internet trends

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Have a great Wednesday,


First published on the All Things IC blog 5 July 2017.


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