Ri5 Profile: Sarah Brown

Ri5 Profile: Sarah Brown


Meet & Engage with Sarah Brown, Client Partner. It's only taken us 19 years to feature her in the Ri5 profile since she first joined this family industry we call recruitment comms...

How did you first get into the industry?

I saw a job ad, way back in 1999. It was a 10x2 mono in the Guardian asking for a recent graduate to join a newish recruitment advertising agency in London called ThirtyThree. I had no idea what recruitment advertising was but the copy made it sound exciting – and they referenced drinking beer so I figured it would be fun!

Would you do the same again?

Absolutely, I love this industry. It’s one of those that you have no idea exists and I doubt anyone grows up thinking ‘I must work in recruitment comms’ but once you’re in it’s like a huge family and somehow really hard to leave!

What would you do if you didn’t do this?

Probably something relating to my degree in architecture where I’d tell people what they should do to improve their homes. Although to be honest, I do this already, mostly to the annoyance of my friends who didn’t ask me for my opinion.

Who are your favourite people from the industry?

Probably some of my old school ThirtyThree pals. I also have a soft spot for Andrew Young despite his rudeness and grumpy old git mentality – his tweets and out of office messages were legendary. And, of course, Sandy Vossos for introducing me to the exceedingly lovely Ali Hackett from Meet & Engage.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve received in your career?

Back when I was a rookie Account Co-ordinator it was to treat the media with respect and always return their calls.

And what piece of advice would you give somebody starting out in the sector?

Attention to detail and correct use of grammar should not be underestimated, even in today’s hashtag abbreviated society.

What’s your favourite recruitment ad?

I can still clearly remember the front-page Sunday Times Appointments ad for McKinsey’s at the time of the dot.com boom – the e=mck one. So simple. I also loved the Claire’s Accessories ‘Boa Selector’ one too, Chris Bennett and Rachel Bright working their creative partnership magic.

And what’s your favourite non-recruitment ad?

I was brought up on the classic Levi’s jeans ads so I’d definitely say those. 

And the T-mobile Liverpool Street Station flashmob dance never fails to raise a smile either.

What are you reading at the moment?

Dominion by CJ Sampson

And what are you listening to?

Whatever the kids ask Alexa to play – currently their favourite is ACDC’s Thunderstuck. Not sure if I should be proud or worried.

Which five guests would you invite to your ideal dinner party?

I’d probably pick my mates over celebs as they are guaranteed to provide an entertaining evening and would also be happy with my less than fancy menu options.

Something or someone for Room 101?

Misuse of apostrophes.

What items do you never leave home without?


What’s your biggest achievement – career or otherwise?

Career-wise it would be winning a RAD for best recruitment print ad (commercial I think it was back in the day) as it had been such a great journey leading up to it with a client who had total faith in our creative team to come up with something really special. Client/agency partnership at its best.  

Who’s your biggest hero, and why?

Anyone who puts themselves out there to help those in need when they don’t have to.

What is your ideal holiday?

Somewhere hot with a pool and access to lots of books. Oh and with people on hand to cook for me and entertain my kids!

What would be your ideal weekend?

A walk in the country with the family and the dog, roast dinner, red wine, log burner and a seriously gripping box set. Simple pleasures, and all that.

Three words to describe yourself?

Straight-talking, creatively-minded, loyal

Your best and worst habits?

Worst - never finishing a cup of tea
Best – being punctual

What’s your guilty pleasure?

Percy Pigs

What has been your worst/most boring job you’ve ever had?

Temping in Sydney for a business angels organisation where I basically just did the filing and made sure the printer had paper. It highlighted that time definitely flies if you’re having fun – and that I need to be stimulated at work.

What single fact would surprise people the most about you?

I can speak Dutch


Thanks Sarah.  If you would like to nominate someone for an Ri5 Profile, or participate yourself, please contact the Ri5 Editorial team at editorial@ri5.co.uk

Thursday, 18 October 2018

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Mark Beavan Date: Oct 19, 2018

I sat next to Cockers for a couple of years. I think I drove her to distraction (and drink), but I learned a lot from her. Hugely knowledgable, creative in her thinking and a great person to work with. She has found a great home at Meet and Engage. And I have a lovely little story about her speaking Dutch on a company trip to Amsterdam.