In lieu of being able to meet our newest members of the Harper community, we’re bringing our team to you! From meeting our food team, we’d like to introduce you to our Business and Agri-food department, starting with lecturer Claire Robertson-Bennett.
Claire specialises in marketing, where she spent the vast majority of her career working in copywriting, editing, publishing, PR and events management. She commented: “I have worked at Harper Adams as both a practising marketer and now teacher of marketing, amongst other business-related subjects. Marketing is a vital, dynamic and exciting field, with lots of areas to specialise in.
“A good foundation in this subject is a huge benefit whether you are planning to start your own business, as many of our students do - sometimes alongside their studies! - or working in someone else’s. The challenges presented by Covid-19 have required many businesses to re-evaluate their way they operate, and having a good handle on their marketing – not just the way they promote themselves but knowing their market, understanding consumer behaviour, and adapting to meet changing needs – will be ever more vital, in every single industry.
“Graduates with a sound grasp of marketing theory and the ability to put it into practice, will be increasingly sought after. Being a good marketer also requires creativity and the ability to communicate effectively, work both individually and in teams, and to think critically – the top skills employers value.”
Claire has brought her own knowledge and experience to her teaching, having worked within the industry for a number of years before turning to teaching. She said: “I was a magazine editor producing a number of lifestyle magazines across the West Midlands, and before that a news reporter for the Express and Star group.
“I have also done freelance marketing and copywriting work, have worked in retail, personnel, housing and for the civil service as a purchaser.”
Alongside this work, Claire is also a qualified neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) practitioner and mental health coach, complementing her studies of psychology at undergraduate level. Claire explained how this links to her teaching, saying: “Having qualified as a mental health practitioner, specialising in emotional wellbeing, I am especially interested in the psychology of business and marketing, and the student experience, and in helping others to manage anxiety and increase their self-confidence and resilience.”
With interests in entrepreneurialism and creating passive income through online businesses alongside advocating for understanding mental health, Claire has a great deal of knowledge to share with her students.