by Josslynne Welch | 26 Oct 2021
The Bloom Report
What exactly do you do in the industry?
We make news. Whether it’s with traditional media like the Today Show or influencers across social platforms, LPR tells our clients’ stories through the channels where their customers are watching, reading, listening, and scrolling.
Why and how did you get into the Toy and Game industry?
During my freshman year at NYU, I took an ‘Intro to PR’ class with Michele Litzky. I thought the class was pass/fail and didn’t take it seriously. I balked when she required us to do a big presentation that would determine our grade. I challenged her in front of the class: “You haven’t taught us enough to put a PR campaign together.” Her retort: “If you actually came to class, you’d have all the information you need.” Fast forward to the day of my presentation, I was on scholarship and needed to nail it. With palpable tension between us, she requested that I stay after class. After all the other students had filed out, she said: “Sit down. It’s your attitude. I don’t know whether to flunk you or hire you.” I started interning for her in August of 1998 and the rest, as they say, is history.
What has been your biggest achievement?
Building the agency and mentoring incredible women along the way. LPR has been my home for more than half my life. Michele is not only my partner but a lifelong mentor and friend. As our CEO, Michele is enjoying a new chapter and as President, I have the privilege of running the agency. I am fortunate to work with a team of smart, talented women - several who have been with me for over a decade – and regardless of where each of them is in her career, I learn from them every day. I’m proud of our deep roots in the toy industry and in recent years have leveraged our expertise reaching kids and families to diversify our client portfolio which now includes publishing, lifestyle, home goods, and more.
It’s an honor to be recognized by the TAGIE Committee for LOVE, Litzky, a grant program I created to assist small companies whose mission is to better the lives of children and families. The project is close to my heart and I’m grateful for the support it’s received in its inaugural year. It would not have been possible without the passion and dedication of the LPR team whose hard work brought it to life, I share the Game Changer award with them.
What was your biggest failure?
Not trusting my gut and standing up for what I believe to be right. We are in the service business and there were moments early in my career when I thought saying yes was always the right answer. I learned that it’s better to respectfully disagree and offer an alternative in real time than blindly follow along in the name of ‘client service.’ In fact, over the years some of my most meaningful client relationships have begun because I said no.
Do you have a typical workday and how does it play out for you?
In PR, there is no typical workday! Our industry has changed so much in recent years - from the rise of bloggers and advent of influencers to shrinking newsrooms and a shift towards affiliate PR – and we’ve worked hard to evolve along with it. So much of my career has been spent nurturing client and press relationships. Today along with mentoring the Litzky Ladies, my focus is building relationships across industries and with new partners and clients. After 23 years at LPR, I’m grateful that I wake up excited for work each day; I’m still having fun!
What was your favorite toy or game as a child?
As a child, I spent hours hosting tea parties for my dolls and stuffed animals. Today, one of my greatest joys is to bring people together over a meal. Pre-pandemic, my husband and I hosted frequent dinner parties and we’ve continued to bring people together virtually during Covid. As life begins to return to ‘normal,’ it’s been wonderful to start thinking about guest lists and menus and the magic that happens when a group of interesting people break bread together.
After spending almost two years saying no, I want to say yes. Not to acquiesce to clients the way I did early on in my career, but to have fun and be bold. As I steer LPR into the future, I’m ready to jump in and there’s no better industry to play in than this one!
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