Paralympic medallist Charlotte Henshaw discusses work experience at Notts PR agency

Two-time Paralympic medallist Charlotte Henshaw joined the Cartwright team on work experience. Here, she discusses life at the Nottingham-based PR agency.

A change of scenery

I’ve been a full-time athlete since I graduated from university in 2009, and my whole adult life has revolved around training.

For the past decade, I have spent 11 months of the year either at the pool, the gym, with coaches or sports psychologists, as well as trying to spend time with friends and family.

I’ve traveled the world and, while I have a degree in psychology and sports studies from Stirling University, I have never had to, or the immediate inclination to, consider my post-sports career until recently.

Life as an athlete is unpredictable.

With Tokyo 2020 potentially being my last Paralympics, this year I wanted to put some time into planning for life after sport during the quieter winter months.

One of Cartwright’s former account directors organised for me to spend a few days in their office for some work experience.

It was quite daunting to start with.

I’ve done a lot of media and PR work from an athlete perspective but I was keen to see what it is like from the other side.

What I learned

I was very much thrown in at the deep end and it was great to have been given some actual tasks to complete, which allowed me to learn and tackle some of the apprehensions at the same time.

Selling in and dabbling in using software were both tasks that put me out of my comfort zone but really helped to give me an indication of what life is like in a PR agency.

I am extremely grateful to the team at Cartwright for allowing me to come in and for giving up their valuable time to teach me the ropes.

It provided a valuable experience and really gave me food for thought as I continue to plan for life after I hang up the paddle.

Charlotte Henshaw is a two-time Paralympic medallist and has won three world para-swimming medals. Having transferred to the British Paracanoe programme in Nottingham two years ago, she won her first world title in August 2018 at the Paracanoe World Championships.

By Cartwright Communications

Cartwright Communications is a team of PR and digital experts. Our roots are in journalism and our focus is on devising content-led integrated communications strategies for our clients. We work with consumer and business-focussed clients in Nottingham, the Midlands, across the UK and internationally across a variety of market sectors.