Joining us as an Associate Medical Copywriter in 2015, after finishing his MSc at Imperial College London, Aaron has worked across a wide breadth of scientific and commercial client accounts over his 5 years at emotive. Now acting as one of our senior medical leads on our commercial and creative business, we caught up with him to learn more about what he gets up to day-to-day.
What are you responsible for?
My role is to take the lead on strategy and content creation for our more commercially-focused and creative accounts here at emotive. This involves working closely with our clients at the very start of projects to make sure we’re creating materials and experiences that really hit their objectives. For some projects, I then continue in the day-to-day creation of copy and content, taking the lead and becoming the in-house expert on a particular therapy area or product. Otherwise I take a step back and provide oversight and support to other writers in the team. Oh, and I get involved in lots of different pitches too!
Talk me through your typical day.
Things are a little different now we’re working remotely – my previous 5.30am starts to commute into London are long gone, and instead I get up at 6.30am, get some exercise in and settle down at my desk for 8.30am.
I usually then take half an hour to scan emails, check out resourcing and see what’s on my agenda for the day, before our quick Medical team check-in (a meeting all departments now run since working from home), where we look at the day ahead and sort out any immediate concerns.
My day is then spent writing from my desk, jumping on calls with the team or our clients, reviewing other writer’s work and lending any spare time to the marketing team or other exciting emotive projects that are always ongoing.
I also have to squeeze in a visit to my island on Animal Crossing over my lunch break – living my best virtual island life is more important than ever now we’re in lockdown!
What do you love most about your job at emotive?
I love working in an environment where I can think creatively and freely about what I do, with people who respect how each other work best. It isn’t the case of working this way or that way, or that you have a set task and you need to get there alone – that’s not how we do things at emotive. We all have different skillsets; this means we fulfil our roles brilliantly, but if you need help or to bounce ideas off someone, there’s always time for one another – often over a tea…or a sneaky lunchtime visit to the pub (pre-lockdown obviously!)
What three words would you use to describe your job?
Diverse. Expressive. Rewarding.
How has the current COVID-19 situation impacted on your role and accounts?
I think, as a writer, the core part of my job – sitting down and writing – remains virtually unchanged, except the location I do it from. The real challenge has come from working with our clients to reconsider our pre-COVID-19 plans, and whether they still meet their objectives in this virtual, socially distanced world we now live in. If they don’t, it’s thinking about how we transform them so they do; how do we make our symposia different now they’re all virtual? Can we make these materials self-led rather than presenter-led? What exciting technologies can we use, or creative campaigns can we come up with, that make sense now we can’t interact with things physically?
There are lots of new challenges we’ve come up against – and I always find it exciting to reconsider ‘traditional’ ways of doing things.
What’s the best and worst thing about working from home?
The best thing is getting back about 4 hours of my day, from avoiding commuting and the constant unknown of ‘Will there be a train today?’
The worst thing is not being able to see the team and doing the ‘everyday’ things. I miss the regular kitchen chats, going for a lunchtime walk or alfresco lunch in nearby Soho Square, and the amazing selection of food and shops we have right on our office doorstep!
Do you have any working from home tips?
- Always take your lunch break.
- Unless something is super pressing, give yourself that time away from your screen to do something different halfway through your day.
- Why not go for a walk, read a book, learn a language (il mio italiano sta migliorando!), watch the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe in chronological order (impossible in a lunchtime but possible over several) or have a few races on Mario Kart?
- It’s also okay to not do anything, and just enjoy the time away from it all.
- It’s tough not having that normal social interaction, but this weird time in life will pass… and think how amazing at Mario Kart you’ll be when it’s over!
What are you looking forward to doing once things go back to “normal”?
So the first thing I should do is get my haircut, as I have so far refused to have a go myself and am very quickly approaching Justin Bieber from his “My World 2.0” era.
However, there is nothing I love more in life than food, so I cannot wait to get back out there enjoying the best food served up in London. I’m keen to get a reservation in at HIDE, but also just really want some peri-peri chips, a McFlurry, Pret’s chicken and pesto flatbread, and an evening of exquisite cheeses at Pick & Cheese (think conveyor belts of sushi… but with cheese. What in life is honestly better than that?!)
emotive is an independent, London-based, award-winning healthcare communications agency committed to changing lives by helping global life science companies bring novel and innovative products to patients. We recognise that only true engagement can facilitate change, and we use our combination of scientific, creative and technical expertise to stimulate optimal participation of all those in the care pathway. We are proud to work with amazing clients on some of the most exciting and meaningful products that will transform healthcare.