Blog post,  Canberra Communications Professional series

Canberra Communications Professional Series: Paige Pettit

Paige is a Communications Manager at the Digital Transformation Agency. I have known Paige for almost eight years, and she is one of the most humble communicators I know. I have watched her grow from a quiet, junior communications officer who wasn’t sure where she fit in, to a strong, confident and knowledgeable communications professional. Paige has worked on some complex projects with innovative communications solutions. She has won over difficult clients with her gentle nature and made lifelong supporters along the way.

What did you do before this role?

Prior to my role at DTA, I’ve spent my communications career in various roles in the Communications Section at the Clean Energy Regulator.

What does a normal day look like?

I am not sure I know any communications professional that has a normal day. I usually start my day by clearing emails, reading related media coverage, and checking what is going out via our external channels for the day. I have various meetings with line areas to discuss their work and how I can best support them with strategic communications. I can be developing communication plans, providing advice or drafting content.

I still feel ‘new’ 4 months in, so I’m still getting up to speed with the world of digital transformation, all the amazing work that is happening around the agency and in the external environment.  

The DTA has just finished hosting a virtual event – the Digital Summit and Government Awards 2020 – which required a lot of communications support and was an exciting project to work on outside the usual strategic comms space.

My day finishes with a team wrap up, organisation is my thing so I then like to plan ahead each afternoon for the following day.

Can you tell us about one of your career highlights?

Since moving agencies, I’ve realised that working in government communications provides many more highlights once you take a step back and look at the exciting things you communicate to such large audiences. Things that I often reflect on are working on communications for positive milestones in Australia.

Being recognised for your work always makes a great career highlight as well!

What is the biggest challenge you have faced in your career?

Starting out in a junior communications role I wasn’t sure what area of communications I was most interested in or where I wanted my career to take me. My supervisors always asked me what I wanted to learn more about and gain more experience in. It seemed a little daunting that I didn’t have a specific area of interest. It often felt challenging as I wasn’t sure exactly what I was working towards or where I should focus more effort.

Over the space of a few years I was lucky enough to gain experience in different areas such as internal communications, media, stakeholder engagement, content writing and management and even learning basic website publishing skills. I now have a passion for strategic communications and have learnt so much along the way.

What changes do you think will occur over the next decade?

The way we communicate with our audience will be ever changing. Aside from this and following the world of COVID, I think communications professionals simply need to be prepared for any change (no matter what this is) and be ready to learn and adapt.

Who inspires you and why?

Colleagues, family and friends all inspire me. Working alongside and gaining experience from talented colleagues has inspired me the most in my career. It gives me motivation to push myself and get out of my comfort zone.

What is your favourite book or podcast?

I don’t really have a favourite book or podcast. I go through phases of lots of reading or no reading for months (currently taking recommendations for a good book*).

I tend to listen to podcasts depending on my mood. I enjoy a good motivational podcast on the way to work, ranging from health, cooking to mindfulness.

Who has been the most influential person in your career?

The most influential people in my career are colleges from the very first communications team I worked in. I learnt so much from them and wouldn’t be where I am today. We no longer work together but still share our work-life experiences and I continue to learn from this amazing group of people.

If you could share one tip with a communications professional what would it be?

Utilise the diverse team you work in. This can include learning and gaining experience from senior colleagues or pulling together team members to bring their unique skills and ideas to the table to produce the best outcomes.

A bit more about Paige…

Paige is a Communications Manager at the Digital Transformation Agency. In this role, Paige drives the DTA’s proactive and reactive strategic communications activities, and develops a range of communications materials. She also lead the agency’s internal communications including the delivery of the newsletter and all staff messages.

Before starting at the DTA she working internal communications, stakeholder engagement and strategic communications at the Clean Energy Regulator.

Paige has a Bachelor of Communications in Public Relations from the University of Canberra.

Learn more about Paige on her LinkedIn profile.

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