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Industry Insight with Mike Kalin

Posted 1st February 2010

Welcome to the Industry Insights section of B-Hive. Over the next few months we will be interviewing some of Birmingham’s most successful PR, Marketing, Creative and Digital professionals – the B-Hive employers!

First up this week is Mike Kalin, Creative Head at Rees Bradley Hepburn Ltd who is telling us what employers really want to hear in an interview.

What do you feel is the most important skill you need to work in Marketing and Communications?

Plenty of imagination. As more and more machines are invented to bombard us with thousands more sales messages every second, you have to be different. Not necessarily completely original. But different from 99% of what’s out there. And that’s why I think imagination is the most valuable skill you can bring to any marketing campaign. The ability to think of something surprising that grabs the attention for a few crucial seconds. Like drumming Gorillas, cravat-wearing Meerkats or an app that lets you know when you’re within half a mile of a Greggs.

What’s the worst thing a candidate could say in an interview?

This is more about something a lot of people don’t say. Obviously, everyone wants to demonstrate what they can do. But something candidates often don’t talk about, but should, are the creatives/companies/work that they’re into and they want to find out more about. Including the firm they are being interviewed for. People don’t just want to hire talent. They want to work with people who have a passion for (and knowledge of) the industry and all its innovations.

Our brief this year is to encourage Birmingham residents and businesses to go green, have you introduced any changes?

I’m never at Sainsbury’s without a bag for life and, at RBH, we’re trying to do more and more for the planet. We are certified by the Forestry Stewardship Council and the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification. In fact, we think we’re the first UK communication agency to be FSC certified. It’s good for our clients too, since everything we produce helps them tick all their green boxes.

We’re interviewing Matt Clugston from Clusta next. If you have any questions that you’d like to ask Matt then please direct message them to our B-Hive twitter at

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