Our ‘man on the street’ in Sochi checks in with a rundown of his Olympics schedule.
By Doug Eldridge, DLE Agency
“To the learned man, the end is the beginning and the beginning is the end; it is the middle that matters most.” — Chinese proverb
As I often tell our interns and law clerks at DLE, there is a massive disconnect between perception and reality when it comes to the life of an agent. There is this Jerry Maguire meets Ari Gold image that the rest of the world sees, knows, thinks or believes is accurate…and then there’s the reality.
Long hours, lost friendships, a revolving door of relationships, and proud but lonely parents, family and spouses. In short, it’s great on paper, different in practice. It’s not about pity, it’s about perspective, which is the focus of this column. Perspective.
When it comes to client portfolio development, it’s not about closing deals; that is merely one variable in the overall equation. As an agency, we have three clients competing in the Winter Olympics and at DLE, we place a huge emphasis on media and public relations. Over the last five days, DLE clients have done ABC, CBS, E! Entertainment Television, ESPN, FOX Business, NBC, Today Show, and a variety of national newspapers and regional television and radio programs. That might sound like a lot, but back in the U.S., there are numerous clients for whom we only (and exclusively) create and execute strategically integrated PR campaigns.
That said, here’s a look at a 24-hour period I recently had here in Sochi.
0218: Get back to hotel room
0245: Answer U.S. emails and client media requests (RUS is +9, so it’s only 1745 EST)
0340: Fall asleep
0700: Wake up (I slept through my alarm by 30 minutes, so gotta put some hustle in that muscle)
0705: Push ups, sit ups, lunges, planks, stretching
0720: Shower, shave, change, organize all materials for the day
0740: Hustle out of the hotel, walk to bus stop
0751: Get bus
0813: Get off bus, get in cab
0832: Arrive for an 0900 client interview
0850: Meet the client
0900: Meet the TV crew
0915: Shoot the segment
0940: Chat with producers and cameramen
1015: Sit-down business meeting with client
1200: Meeting finished, answer emails while I have reliable WiFi signal (one of the few times while in Russia)
1300: Media meeting (coffee)
1320: Hustle across park…it’s big, so it takes a while
1400: Media meeting (coffee)
1500: Client meeting
1530: Client media interview
1545: Client meeting (part 2)
1630: Half-hour of catch-up emails
1700: Leave for dinner meeting at USA House
1800: Client media: Skype interview with U.S.
1820: Client meeting
1845: Doug free time
1900: Leave for P&G House
1930: Meeting (again)
1945: Leave for buses
2000: Get on bus
2020: Get on train
2055: Get on gondola
2100: Walk to security
2110: Arrive at client competition
2330: Competition ends
2340: Talk with client any their family
0030: Leave competition venue
0031: Gondola to train to bus to cab to walk
0215: Walk into my hotel room
And that is my 23 hour 57 minute day at the Olympics. When you’re working with (and for) your clients, you may get tired…but you never get bored.
Doug Eldridge is the managing partner of the DLE Agency, an integrated PR consulting firm, based out of Washington, DC. A lawyer by trade, Doug has represented athletes and personalities across the NFL NBA UCI IAAF FIFA Olympic, Action and Motor Sports landscape. His agency also provides communication and brand development strategies to emerging businesses and charitable organizations. Doug is also a frequent TV analyst on issues ranging from sports to legal to PR and has been featured on ABC, CBS, CNN, FOX FOX Business, FOX News, and NBC. He has three athletes competing in the Sochi Olympics.