Interview: Scott Grubin, Chief Talent Officer and Partner, Porter Novelli

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Former Merrill Lynch human resources executive Scott Grubin joined Porter Novelli this week as Chief Talent Officer and Partner. PRNewser caught up with Grubin to ask him a few questions about his new role.

Of course, we know one thing PRNewser readers want to know: is the agency hiring? “We’re always looking for very strong talent in the areas that we are leaders,” Grubin said.

More after the jump.


You joined the company as chief talent officer and partner. How common is the title “Chief Talent Officer?”

It’s not that common in the PR industry, and Porter Novelli as a leader in global PR wanted to find the same road when it comes to talent. I’m excited for that opportunity.

Are there specific verticals within Porter that you will focus on to start?

Not one in particular. There are so many different ways consumers and brands are interacting in this marketplace, and we need to make sure we are leveraging all of our talent, including those who are specializing in social media and are making sure conversations are taking place in the right places.

What are some specific things you’ve seen companies do to retain their top talent?

There are a couple of things. One is making sure that talent has an opportunity to grow and develop in their careers. That they are coming in and looking at this as an opportunity with a lot of growth options. The other thing involves creating an environment where people feel they can be recognized for their efforts and have the opportunity for advancement.

You joined Porter Novelli from Merrill Lynch. What made you want to get into the PR sector?

I think the incredible opportunity to work with very talented and creative and innovative group and also the position as CTO. Again, Porter Novelli is a leader in this industry and also it’s an organization that is incredibly committed to growing talent, attracting the best and brightest in the market.

What do you anticipate will be the biggest changes in moving from financial services to PR?

There are lot of new abbreviations I have to learn. There is a new language that has to be learned, but one of the advantages of coming in is you come in with no preconceived notions of what works and what doesn’t in terms of bringing the best out of our talent.