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Q&A: Elizabeth Egan

Elizabeth Egan is President of Havas Lynx Group

What gets you out of bed in the morning?

The thought of a great coffee, a run and the excitement about the day ahead. I feel so blessed to be surrounded by energetic young talent in such volume who are passionate about making a real difference.

What’s the best thing about working in healthcare comms?

The opportunity to blend science, strategy, creativity and technology to create better patient outcomes across multiple therapy areas. It’s hard work, but worth every drop of effort.

What’s the worst thing about working in healthcare comms?

I don’t see a downside; I only see opportunities to drive change. There might be a few hurdles along the way, but I believe, with the right people, anything is possible. The people are everything in this industry.

What’s your favourite bar or eatery?

At our London office, Granary Square Brasserie (part of The Ivy Collection). At our Manchester office, The Ivy! And then at home, on the weekend, my own simple one pot cooking. I really must branch out from always having the shepherd’s pie at The Ivy, but it’s just so good!

Which book/film would you recommend above all others and why?

When Breath Becomes Air, a non-fiction, autobiographical book written by Paul Kalanithi. It is a memoir about his life and illness, battling stage IV metastatic lung cancer. I couldn’t put it down. I also saw his wife talk about it at Stanford Medicine X in San Francisco, which I’ll never forget for as long as I live.

Which buzzwords/office jargon get on your nerves?

Well, my friends and I joke about this actually and we have new ones all the time. Our current ‘favourites’ include: ‘let’s land this’ and ‘here are my avails…’ But I don’t want the jargon to go away. It’s a source of amusement. Keep ‘em coming, I say!

Which person, living or dead, do you admire the most and why?

It’s very tough to pick one. Right now, I think I’m going to go with Oprah. I adore her spirit, and her story from childhood to today is amazing. I am also a bit of a groupie of hers, having worked for WW (Weight Watchers International) for 12 years, I totally buy into all her Wellness workshop advice and tour chat… she’s inspirational, fun and real.

Who is your healthcare comms hero/heroine?

So many! But I’m going to pick on Matt Eagles. He’s had Parkinson’s since the age of seven, yes seven! What he’s done for the condition in terms of patient advocacy, leadership and positivity is a force for good. Head to parkylife.com to see the incredible illustrations which detail the hacks, perks, inspiring people and funny stories that are being championed by Matt and the team to support the Parkinson’s community.

What has been your career highlight to date?

I’ve had so many fantastic opportunities. I feel extremely lucky. I do reflect on my three and a half years in China sometimes and think: wow, that really was a very special time, to work in healthcare, in a complex market, set up a business and get really stuck into the culture.

What’s your golden rule/piece of advice for someone starting a career in healthcare comms?

Be prepared to get stuck in, learn lots and work hard. Only take that first leap if you truly care about helping people: patients, healthcare professionals, caregivers, family members – and then it won’t even feel like work, and you’ll make some extra special friends along the way.

23rd April 2020

From: Marketing

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