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Birthdays, away days and playlists

by James Hickman James Hickman


  • Posted on Wednesday 31st October, 2018

I’m currently sat in a completely empty office. Due to a combination of yet another calamitous diary management decision by myself and with the impending news of the potential Channel 4 HQ relocation (for which we’ve been delighted to be involved in as part of the All In. Leeds campaign – saving that for another blog post), I sadly am unable to attend the leaving lunch for one of Hatch’s many superstars, Holly Crosby, who is leaving the bright lights of Leeds to travel around Asia and Australia.

The silence in the office has put me in a reflective mood (that and the combination for some weirdly melancholic playlist that is belting out of the office Sonos). So what better time to draft a little post!

We’ve just returned from our 8thannual Hatch Away Day that was easily our best yet! Since we started Hatch we’ve tried to ensure that the team has some sort of respite to myself, Matt and Jason’s constant bickering, and so the Hatch Away Day was born.

The term Away Day is a massively misnomer. Our trips usually involve a fun filled long weekend of relaxation and beverages, and we’ve been fortunate enough to take the team to some amazing destinations including Berlin, Rome, Lisbon, Ibiza and Reykjavik to name just a few.

This is Hatch’s 10thyear in business and as you can imagine the team has grown, so taking everyone away is proving to be a logistical challenge. That said, the three days spent in Budapest were amazing – I’ll leave a Budapest wrap up blog to someone else in the team.

Looking back over the past 10 years I’ve been fortunate enough to work with some truly amazing people and on some fantastic campaigns, but I can honestly say I’ve never been prouder of the work produced or been surrounded by so many talented individuals as in the past two years at Hatch.

Part of the herculean effort put in by the team in that period has become apparent today as Prolific North have published their Top 50 PR Agencies 2018 list, in which we’ve jumped eight places to enter the Top 10. It’s news like this that makes you take a step back.

I put it down to age and all the bravado of some of our southern peers, but in my head I still see us as a small regional PR agency. In reality, we are anything but. We’ve grown to a team of 25, we’ve got offices in Leeds and London (proper ones!), we work with clients from all over the world on global campaigns – we’ve had to do that agency thing of putting multiple clocks on the wall so we remember time zones! Our offer has developed to include separate social, content and experiential teams, and we’ve already outgrown the office we moved into 2 years ago (watch this space).

Next year promises to be even bigger with some VERY exiting projects on the horizon, so hopefully if the next 10 years of Hatch can be half as exciting as the past 10 I’ll one day retire from a job, that my friends and family still don’t understand, a very happy man.

Now before the next Ben Howard track on the Sonos sends me over the edge, I’m going to make myself a quick brew and wait for the Channel 4 HQ decision to come in. Fingers crossed for Leeds!