Ray Day | Influence 100
Charting the future of public relations
ray-day-2018-influence-100

Ray Day

Chief Communications Officer
IBM
US

@Rday1

 

Ray Day was just three months into the job he assumed last December heading IBM comms, when he unleashed a new era in IBM's communications efforts, part of an overarching mandate to rally flagging brand fortunes at the 106-year-old tech giant. By May, Day’s blockbuster global PR review was done; Weber Shandwick would lead a four-agency team, resulting in the company parting ways with its two lead agencies of 17 years — Text100, which opted out of the review, and Ketchum, which did not make the first-round cut. Agency reps would work hand-in-hand with IBM’s in-house team in a fully integrated way.

This mimics Day's approach during his 28-year career at Ford, where he helped oversee the multi-agency Ford team deployed by WPP. “We just wanted to take a fresh start," Day told the Holmes Report. “Our goal overall, in-house and with our agency partners, is to build world class communications through a world class team.”

Can you share a moment in your career when you saw PR's direct impact on business performance?
The turnaround and differentiation of Ford from the competition during the Great Recession was a past career highlight. Taking IBM and the IBM Communications team to being world-class provide even more excitement and opportunity!

What do you love about this industry?
This is an industry in which we all constantly learn and grow – and our profession typically pulls all pieces of a company together around a common story and vision.

What most frustrates you about this industry?
No frustrations! Our opportunity is to change ourselves and our teams at or quicker than the pace of change of the world outside us.

What are the communications industry's biggest challenges and opportunities?
Growing, learning and ensuring that the diversity of our teams match the world around us.

How do you relax or change pace when you're not at work?
Spending time with family, running and traveling.

If I wasn't working in marketing/communications, I would be...
A journalist, where it all started for me.