The Life of PRMS: Danielle Bolger, Director of Marketing
One year ago, on the very same day the rest of PRMS’ employees had begun their work-from-home existences – having taken home laptops, forwarded desk phones to cell phones, and transported desk essentials to kitchen tables and home offices the Friday before – I began my PRMS career. I walked into a virtually empty office space to meet Tonya Davies, Head of PRMS, on day one as the newly hired Director of Marketing. I met a handful of colleagues who decided to come into the office one more time – including Melanie Smith, the retiring Director of Client Relations, who would onboard me. I toured the office space to locate basics like printers, restrooms and kitchens, and I got set up with my laptop. Then, it was time to take home what I could and begin my virtual work life at PRMS. That first month was a whirlwind of COVID-19 developments, team touch-bases, introductions, how-to’s, and history lessons; and even today it’s hard to believe that a year has already gone by.
Prior to joining PRMS, I worked in marketing in the commercial real estate and retail industries – not only did I have a lot to learn about the professional liability insurance industry, but I also had a lot of people to meet! Those people, despite having met very few in person, have been one of the most rewarding parts of this role. Despite working virtually, I’ve made so many connections and established relationships with partners and colleagues all around the country, from California to Washington, DC.
As the Director of Marketing for PRMS, I lead a team of three – two of whom already worked remotely – to drive the company’s client relations, partnerships, events, advertising, digital initiatives, and other marketing efforts. Our small but mighty marketing team quickly became Microsoft Teams experts, connecting nearly daily via chats, phone, and video calls. 2020 was all about pivoting – from the world of in-person exhibits and meetings to the world of virtual events and telepsychiatry. We hit the ground running, quickly mobilizing to distribute COVID-19 email alerts covering everything from telepsychiatry to state licensure regulations to our clients and partners; making updates to our new COVID-19 FAQs webpage in an effort to share our expertise with, not only our clients, but the greater mental healthcare community; and providing support to communities through donations and our Refer a Colleague program. I have been in awe of the hard work, dedication, and care the mental healthcare community has put forth in the last year despite the challenging circumstances of pandemic, racial injustice, political unrest, and more.
As time went on, cancelled in-person events were reimagined to take place on virtual platforms. Despite the circumstances, it has been an inspiring and creative time to work with our partner organizations around the country as we brainstorm engaging opportunities to exhibit, sponsor, and interact with members – everything from casual catch-ups on Zoom to cocktail-making classes. The marketing team even planned PRMS’ first virtual webinar, PRMS Psych-cess, in September 2020, for residents, fellows, and early career psychiatrists - its success has allowed the team to bring it back as a series in 2021. We developed new advertising campaigns, risk management resources, and videos, collaborating across all departments to continue providing the service PRMS is known for.
I like to think of marketing as the function that ties everything together – we get to communicate with clients and partners in so many different ways – sharing information and resources through emails, events, ads, videos, and meetings. And even without the ability to connect in person with my team, my colleagues, and our network of partners, I have always felt connected. So while I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve visited the PRMS office since joining the company in March 2020, and I’ve yet to meet most of the PRMS team in person, I still feel like I’ve been welcomed into the PRMS family throughout my experiences this past year. It is evident how much we care about community through supporting our clients, our partnerships, our charitable giving, and our focus on behavioral healthcare, and I am proud to lead those charges from the marketing perspective as a part of that community.