Adam Knight is a Communications Specialist at BC College of Nursing Professionals, based in Vancouver, Canada.
Balance the Grind spoke to Adam about his communications career, working for CSIRO and moving to Canada, a typical day in his life, favourite books and more.
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1) To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your background and career?
I have been a professional communicator now for over 7 years. The role has allowed me to work in a variety of different industries covering media relations, social media, internal communications, event planning, to name a few.
I started off in public relations, where I got to work across a variety of start-up, tech and business clients.
I was fortunate to be part of the social media team and then the internal communications team for CSIRO (highlight: working on the project that shared the first images of Pluto) before I headed off to Vancouver, Canada, where I’ve mainly worked on employee engagement roles.
2) What is your current role and what does it entail on a day to day basis?
I am currently helping a regulatory body here in the province of British Columbia develop it’s culture and assist with their internal and executive-level communications needs.
My day could be managing an organization-wide staff meeting, or creating the internal newsletter, I could be developing scripts for an AGM, or proofreading the Annual Report.
3) What does a typical day in the life look like for you? Can you take us through a recent workday?
I think I can manage that.
My wife and I will start the day with a coffee and greeting the sunshine with our cat. I then don my extremely flattering lycra cycling costume and get peddling to work. My commute to the office is relaxed, but a great way to get the heart-rate up and ready for the work day.
After dispatching with those pesky overnight emails, I will normally launch into my evergreen projects — today it was finalizing interviews I conducted for the staff newsletter. I’m also gearing up for the next round of staff meetings which requires coordinating content, logistics, and preparing pre and post-meeting surveys.
For lunch, I prepare what I believe to be three reasonably-sized salad sandwiches (others have remarked that it looks like I am preparing the catering for a large meeting). Once consumed, I head outside and spend 10 minutes in meditation.
For the rest of the day, I cobbled together some footage for a how-to video (I try and do as much content creation as I can within my purview), and sat in a couple of planning meetings before heading off on my bike ride home. It was a quick ride today as I had an early ice hockey game to get to (little bit of humble brag, we won 8-5!)
4) In between everything you do and all your responsibilities, how do you ensure you find some sort of balance in your life?
I’ve always relied on sport to be my circuit breaker. Back in my more youthful days it was football and cricket. Later on I took up Muay Thai kickboxing. Nowadays I find my balance by commuting to work on my bike, and taking long bike rides home. I have also taken up meditation. I also play ice hockey every week, which is a challenge, because these Canadians can skate!
Since moving overseas, away from the family and friends I built up over a lifetime, I noticed that one of the most important parts of remaining balanced is surrounding yourself with wonderful people, and I am glad to have been able to achieve this.
5) What are some of the things you do to take time out and recharge?
Hiking in forests. Western Canada is home to some of the most incredible natural splendour you are likely to see. Walking through old-growth forests or around a frozen lake is like a cleansing bath. I am sad that I didn’t avail myself of more hikes in Australia, but I am certainly finding that hikes are my surefire way to recharge.
6) Are there any gadgets, tools or products can’t you live without?
I’ve recently tried to cull as much extra noise and distraction as possible. But my phone and Bluetooth headphones are my must have devices. I also picked up an e-reader as I found that reading on my phone was too distracting and I wouldn’t be present in the story.
Finally, a little notebook and pen to jot down my thoughts. I do use Evernote and other apps, like Trello for keeping lists, but there is nothing quite like the feel of pen on paper. Plus no one can spy on me this way 😉
7) Do you have any books that you love and would like to recommend?
Based on my last answer: 1984 by George Orwell. Seriously though, I would highly recommend:
- How to Change your Mind: What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence by Michael Pollan.
- Waking Up by Sam Harris.
I’ve found these authors have opened me up to a more secular spirituality and it is something I am exploring with fervor.
8) What is the number one thing you do to make sure you get the most out of your day?
Take a deep breath and remind myself to be thankful for all that have.
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