In my first blog, written about my very first week at The Forge, I ever so kindly informed the office that if I was to listen to girly chit chat about where the best place for a manicure was and what the latest anti-wrinkle creams were, not that any of the girls need them, *good dodge Matt, pay rise expected*, that I would also require them to show some interest in the weekends football.

Now although efforts have been made and I do appreciate it, normally it’s just good old me, myself and I making conversation with the back pages on a Monday morning. This week we had an excuse so the conversation simply couldn’t be avoided.

You see, it was our first piece of office rivalry. Arsenal (my team) vs Aston Villa (Holly… well Holly’s adopted team thanks to her husbands persuasion) clashing together in the FA cup final. Two teams desperate to win, but for very different reasons after extremely conflicting seasons. Yet our paths both lead to Wembley.


At this point I would love to take you through every minute of the game, smiling as I do it, explaining each of Arsenals beautiful four goals in geeky detail while I include footballing mockery towards Aston Villa’s lack of competition, but I’ll let the real journalist do that.

My main reason for writing this blog was not to gloat about winning a football match. That would be rather strange for a PR, but you see, there is a metaphor here. Competition and sport has always been a stable in my life and the values passed on are so important in our everyday lives.

Our businesses simply wouldn’t work if we didn’t have this drive to win. Just a glance at the monthly coverage chart on the office wall and you’ll see our spirited side. There will be no hooliganism towards one another in this match and, unfortunately, no ludicrous loser dares to accomplish, it’s still a good example of competition in the work place.

That for me is important, at whatever level in whatever line of business, it’s those little gains that get you through the day. Winning is important yes, but being at the start line, even more so. It was the great man Muhammad Ali who said you can only succeed if you are willing to get hit. And although I’m not ensuing that we take risks of being knocked out, standing out is massively important at The Forge, and sometimes a little healthy competition is what it takes for us to break the mould.

Let’s be honest, I could quite easily have written this blog post about the coverage chart on the wall giving us that healthy competition, but PR is about taking topical news and putting your own angle on it, and I wasn’t going to let the opportunity to blog about football pass me by.

Whether it is indeed a football analogy, or like Holly’s post of last week, How To Be A Happy PR, it’s often the actions taken away from the desk that give us the opportunity to flourish. It could be to increase focus, produce new ideas, or even give us the motivation to succeed, sometimes a little competition takes us a lot further than we expect.

Speak Soon,


A special thanks goes to Arsenal FC, for without them, this post would not have possible. Mainly because I would have thrown my computer against the wall if we lost…