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Tori Cowley’s background as a chartered accountant not only makes her more numerate than most communications folk, but it also serves as the ideal grounding for her role as chief communications officer of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, which she took on in 2018 after seven years in a similar role with London’s Stock Exchange.
Cowley’s position with HKEX has seen her transform the communications function to notable effect, giving the low-profile entity a more visible positioning as a key driver of Hong Kong’s reputation. And while the latter has seen its share of challenges in recent times, the city’s Stock Exchange remains one of its crown jewels, giving Cowley a unique platform for global storytelling.
Cowley previously served as EMEA head of communications at Thomson Reuters, after deciding to make a career shift. It’s probably safe to say that the accountancy world’s loss is the communications sector’s gain.
Can you share a moment in your career when you saw PR's direct impact on business performance?
Every day I see its impact, both good and bad. In recent years, the power of good communications in helping to motivate, engage and support colleagues has been very evident across sector and industry.
What are the communications industry's biggest challenges and opportunities in the year ahead?
At an operational level: managing both the strategic and tactical execution of a function that is really 24-7; while taking your organisation and its executives on the journey too. At a macro level, the world is complex and managing through that will present challenges in the next few years.
What have you most admired about this industry over the past year?
Its tenacity and resilience. Its ability to adapt and evolve, and the commitment of its people to do the right thing.
What has most disappointed you about this industry over the past year?
Still seen as an afterthought in some organisations, when the pandemic has shown that it is critical to business success and sustainability.
How have you switched off from work and maintained wellness over the past year?With difficulty! Family time and swimming.
Which book/movie/TV show/podcast/playlist/other cultural source has helped you get through the past year or provided inspiration?
God bless Netflix.
If I wasn't working in marketing/communications, I would be...
Sum up 2022 in one word.
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