About Me

"The art of communication is the language of leadership."
  ~ James Humes

Site last updated: 28 July 2017
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Welcome to my online portfolio. I'm an independent communications consultant, freelance writer and editor with many years of experience, and I trade under the name of Cahill Communications.

I've been in private practice since September 2002, providing communications and content development services for a range of clients in different sectors, both locally and internationally.

Corporate Communications
Public Sector and NPO Communications
Media Communications
Internal and Stakeholder Communications
CSI and Sponsorship Support
Crisis Communications
Communications Strategy
Reputation Management
Corporate/Brand Identity

Key Sectors:
Corporate Social Investment
Financial Services
Media and Communications
IT and Technology
Arts and Culture

My Work

At present, the bulk of my work is in writing and editing. I specialise in writing and/or editing annual reports, corporate reports, strategies, corporate profiles, parliamentary submissions, research reports, business case studies, journal submissions, corporate histories, state profiles, policy manuals and other in-depth documentation, especially where there is a need to communicate complex concepts in everyday language.

I also specialise in developing content for both traditional and new media, as well as in developing communications elements such as brochures, pamphlets, newsletters, stakeholder alerts etc. When required, I work with either the client's design team or one of my design partners to develop and produce communications elements from conceptualisation through to final production.

In my consulting work, I specialise in developing communications strategies.

I have a strong background in senior and executive management, policy and strategy development, communications planning, reputation management, marketing, branding, creative conceptualisation and project management.

I work mainly for clients in the corporate, financial services, consulting, government, SOE and NPO sectors, as well as for several communications agencies.

Recent Projects:
  1. Editing and proofreading of a submission for the South African Actuarial Journal (SAAJ) on behalf of Alexander Forbes (commissioned by Ince). 
  2. Development of selected copy for the Vunani Limited Integrated Annual Report 2017 (commissioned by Ince).
  3. Development of a wide range of corporate and communications material for various clients, including Ansys, BUSA, Nedbank and SACCI (all commissioned by PR Powerhouse).
  4. Development of revised web copy for Genesis Analytics (please note that the client makes changes to the copy in-house from time to time). 
  5. Editing and proofreading of 170 economics case studies, also for Genesis Analytics. See Featured Projects.
  6. Development of two promotional campaigns for Metrofile (commissioned by IT! Marketing).
  7. Development of a new corporate profile for the Mineworkers Investment Company (commissioned by Edleman).
  8. Writing and proofreading of the narrative sections for the 2016 Integrated Annual Report for Efficient Group. The group's 2015 Integrated Annual Report, which I also wrote/edited and proofread, can also be viewed on its web site.

My Background

Before setting up my practice, I was the Group Marketing Manager for Business Partners Limited, South Africa's leading investment company for small and medium enterprises. In this position I was responsible for the re-launch of the brand, the development of a new corporate image and the development of all communications content. I was also responsible for media liaison and monitoring, CRM and stakeholder engagement.

Prior to that, I was the Marketing Manager and a Commissioning Editor at Struik Publishers (now a division of Random House Penguin), the country's largest publisher of illustrated non-fiction, where I was also responsible for the re-launch of the brand after it was acquired by Primedia. Before that, I was the Senior Manager: Promotional Marketing for the Nedcor Group, where I was responsible for all sponsorship support and promotional activities for the seven banking brands in the group at the time. A full CV is available on request.

I have a BA in English and Art History (1978) and a BA (Hons) in English (1979). I also completed the Certificate Programme in Strategic Marketing Management at the Wits Business School in 1995, and have completed a number of post-experience courses in management, writing, journalism, book publishing, photography and project management.

My work philosophy is to provide an expert, efficient and cost-effective professional service, on deadline and to budget. I take pride in forming long-term relationships with my clients, and in developing in-depth knowledge of their companies and organisations.

For further information, please scroll down or click through to my profile on Who's Who Southern Africa or on LinkedIn, where references and endorsements are available. The first of the two profiles is public, but you will need a LinkedIn account to access my profile there.

Use the PORTFOLIO tab at the top of the page to access examples of individual projects. 

Please feel free to contact me with any queries you may have about your communications needs. Queries relating to projects of any nature, size or scope are welcome, and there is no charge for taking a brief and developing a cost estimate.

According to CEO of SimpleRelevance, Erik Severinghaus, many companies fail to optimise messages in pivotal ways that would help them reach customers:
"To break through, your business will need to produce great quality content. H
owever you produce it, make sure it's content that delivers real reader value."


I service a portfolio of clients and agencies that includes, amongst others, Genesis Analytics, Efficient Group, Ince, Metrofile, Sappi Limited, PR Powerhouse and the Johannesburg SPCA.

I also have a significant body of work done for such clients as WWF South Africa, Business Partners, PG Bison, the South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI) and the Road Accident Fund (RAF), as well as for PR agencies such as C-Squared, Chillibush, Gillian Gamsay International, Grant Marshall Communications and Magna Carta.

Ad Hoc Projects

Ad hoc communications projects I've done have included work for such clients as Arcay, Afrox, FinBond, FirstRand, FNB Leveraged Finance (previously FNB Enterprise Solutions), HSBC, KPMG, Norton Rose Fulbright and National Data Systems.

This work has included the development of communications strategies and plans, brand presentations, specialist brochures and a range of other communications elements.

Working as a contributing writer and/or editor, I've also contributed to a range of projects for clients such as the Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP), Grindrod Bank, Mail and Guardian, Monitoring South Africa (MSA), the National Empowerment Fund (NEF), the National Treasury, the State Information and Technology Agency (SITA)The Freedom Park, THRIP (government's Technology and Human Resources in Industry programme) and Wiphold.

These projects have included special reports and features for publication in the media, annual reviews and five-year reviews, as well as a range of both internal and external communications.



I specialise in policy and strategy development, writing, editing and content development for corporate, public sector and organisational clients.

The services I offer include:
  • policy and strategy development;
  • communications planning; and
  • corporate, marketing, media, social media, public, internal, stakeholder, corporate social investment (CSI) and mass communications.
More specifically, I develop policy and communications strategies and/or plans for a wide range of products and services; conceptualise, develop and implement communications campaigns; and develop communications content such as:
  • annual reports;
  • corporate reports, profiles and presentations;
  • business case studies;
  • media releases;
  • editorial, op-ed and thought leadership features;
  • branding campaigns;
  • launch and re-launch campaigns;
  • social media campaigns;
  • ads;
  • brochures;
  • posters;
  • information leaflets;
  • web sites and blogs;
  • internal newsletters;
  • client newsletters;
  • e-newsletters;
  • special promotions;
  • sponsorship support programmes; and
  • corporate social investment campaigns.
I also offer project management services, develop creative briefs, and write marketing, sponsorship and corporate social investment proposals


Policy and Strategy

As policies and strategies developed for and on behalf of clients are not in the public domain, I'm unable to post any examples on this site.

However, this is a list of some of the larger projects I've researched and written:
  • South African National Accreditation System (SANAS): Corporate Communications Policy (2013)
  • South African National Accreditation System (SANAS): Crisis Communications Policy (2013)
  • Sappi Paper and Paper Packaging: Strategic Rationale and Communications Plan for the launch of Sappi's first-ever consumer campaign, 'i choose paper' (2010)
  • PG Bison: Brand and Product Portfolio Marketing and Communications Strategy (2008)
  • Sappi Kraft: Brand and Product Portfolio Marketing and Communications Strategy (2008)
  • Sappi Kraft: Resilio Launch Marketing and Communications Strategy (2007)
  • Sappi Kraft: Barricoat Launch Marketing and Communications Strategy (2007)
  • South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI): Karoo Desert National Botanical Garden and Harold Porter National Botanical Garden Marketing and Communications Strategy (2007)
  • Sappi Fine Paper: Triple Green Media Launch Strategy (2006)
  • Afrox: Strategic Marketing, Media and Stakeholder Communications Strategy (2005)
  • South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI): Lowveld National Botanical Garden Marketing and Communications Strategy (2005)
  • Sappi Limited: Mpumalanga Regional Communications Strategy (2005)
  • FNB Leveraged Finance: Launch Strategy (2004)
  • Now Media: Travelinfo Marketing and Communications Strategy (2003)
  • Institute of Natural Health: Marketing and Communications Strategy (2002)
  • Furman Glass: Brand Re-Launch Strategy (2002)
  • Business Partners Limited (previously the Small Business Development Corporation): Brand Re-Launch Strategy (2002)
  • Struik Publishers: (Johnnic Communications): Brand Re-Launch Strategy (1999)
  • Struik Publishers: (Johnnic Communications): Sales and Marketing Strategy (1999)
  • D Sat: Advertising Strategy (1999)
  • Johannesburg SPCA: Brand Re-Launch and Communications Strategy (1998)
  • KPMG: Corporate Communications Strategy (1996)
  • HSBC Simpson Mc Kie: Brand Re-Launch Strategy (1996)
  • HSBC Simpson Mc Kie: Marketing Plan (1996)
  • HSBC Simpson Mc Kie: Creative Strategy (1996)


Corporate, Marketing and Media Communications

I have a large corporate, marketing and media communications portfolio, which includes elements developed for various clients.

Recent examples include an editorial feature entitled Examining the link between fat and diabetes and a trends feature entitled Foshizi's Top Five Mass Market Trends for 2016, both commissioned by PR Powerhouse.

An earlier example is What Obama's visit means to Africa, which was commissioned by Arcay Corporate Communications for GE Africa.

Click on the PORTFOLIO tab at the top of this page to view further samples.   

All of my work is archived in the form of PDF and JPG files on scribd.com. Please let me know if you experience any broken links by using the CONTACT ME tab in the toolbar.


Web Content

I regularly develop web content for my clients. This work sometimes involves conceptualising or re-conceptualising the whole web site and supervising the site build as well.

Some examples of web sites I've worked on include:


In 2014, I re-wrote all of the web content for Metrofile, the leader in fully integrated records and information management in South Africa and selected African countries. The company has 26 purpose-built facilities throughout the country, which make it the first choice in record and information management for businesses and organisations in every industry and sector.

Genesis Analytics

In 2012, I developed the content for the new Genesis Analytics web site, and continue to develop and/or edit content for the site. A complete site upgrade was undertaken during the course of 2016. Note that the client updates the copy on the site on an ad hoc basis.

Genesis Analytics is a South African-based consulting firm that advises governments and companies in emerging markets on issues related to strategy, the competitive environment, regulation and development. The firm consults throughout Africa, the Middle East and India.

Johannesburg SPCA

In 2013 I developed the content for the new JSPCA web site, which was used to launch the society's new corporate image. The site was designed and built by the client's agency. Note that the client updates the home page and staff interviews on an ad hoc basis.

The Johannesburg SPCA is the oldest and one of the largest SPCAs in South Africa. It services an area that includes Soweto, Orange Farm, Roodepoort and Krugersdorp.

I've also previously developed either complete web sites or web site content for Sappi Limited, FNB Leveraged Finance, Struik Publishers, Furman Glass, the Johannesburg SPCA, Metrofile and Uniglobe Bay Travel.

Sappi Paper and Paper Packaging "i choose paper" Campaign

"i choose paper" was Sappi's first-ever consumer campaign, and was specifically designed to inform consumers about the benefits of using fully-sustainable paper packaging in preference to other non-sustainable and environmentally-damaging options.

I developed the strategy for this campaign and conceptualised and developed all of the communications elements with the input of my design associate, Cilmi Steyn of Steyn Photo&Graphic. The web site was built by Mark of Bellboy Media and I acted as Creative Director and Project Manager on the project. The site is unfortunately no longer online but a screen shot of the home page is available in HTML format on request.

Sappi Refibre

Sappi Refibre is Sappi Limited's secondary fibre division, and is responsible for the recycling of used paper and paper products.

I conceptualised the division's launch web site, and researched and wrote the content. The build was done by Mark of Bellboy Media, using original design elements developed by Steyn Photo&Graphic and Sappi's own design agency. I also acted as Creative Director and Project Manager on the project. The dedicated Refibre site is unfortunately no longer available online, but a screenshot of the home page is available on HTML format on request. 

Sappi / WWF Tree Routes Partnership

I conceptualised and developed the original content for the Sappi WWF TreeRoutes Partnership web site based on the client's brief.

The project's aim is to foster a new concept in co-operative rural development that fulfils both human and environmental needs. This is being done by creating unique community-owned and run eco-tourism destinations in the endangered forests and wetlands of KwaZulu Natal, Mpumalanga and Eastern Cape.

The original copy is available in MS Word format on request.

Business Partners Limited

I conceptualised and developed the content for the new Business Partners web site at the time the brand was re-launched in 2002. I also developed most of the downloadable elements, such as brochures and annual reports, between 2002 and 2011.

In addition, I developed some of the content for the related SME Toolkit, an International Finance Corporation initiative.

Business Partners is South Africa's leading investment company for small and medium enterprises, and has invested over R6bn in entrepreneurial ventures.

Please note that the original copy on both web sites has since have been amended by the client, but the original copy is available in MS Word format on request.


Executive Speeches

On occasion, I am commissioned to write executive speeches by client companies. Click on the links below to read some examples.

These documents are archived as PDF files on scribd.com. Please let me know if you experience any broken links by using the CONTACT ME tab in the toolbar.

  • BankSETA: Address by the CEO, Max Makhubalo, delivered at the graduation ceremony of the BankSETA-sponsored Letsema Learnership Programme (2013).
  • SekelaXabiso: Address by CEO, Lindani Dhlamini, delivered at the annual Internal Audit Conference (2013).
  • Sasria: Address by the Chairman, Mr Cyril Ramaphosa, delivered by video link at the annual Chairman's Charity Golf Day (2010):
  • Department of Trade and Industry (dti): Address by the Honourable Deputy Minister, Ms Maria Ntuli, delivered at the launch of the National Empowerment Fund's Business Planner and Mentorship Programme (2009)
  • SITA (State Information and Technology Agency): Address by the Honourable Minister of Public Service and Administration, Richard Baloyi, delivered at the launch of GovTech 2009
  • Road Accident Fund: Address by the CEO of the Road Accident Fund, Mr Jacob Modise, delivered at the UN World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims (2007) 
  • Sappi Limited: Address by the CEO, Mr Jonathan Leslie, delivered at the launch of the LignoTech SA expansion project, which made LignoTech the largest facility of its kind in the world.
  • Sappi Limited: Address by Mr Ockert le Roux, delivered on the occasion of the retirement of Sappi Executive Chairman and CEO, Mr Eugene van As (2003)


Mass Communications

I've done a limited amount of work in the mass communications field. Click on one of the links below to view examples of what I've written.

These documents are archived as PDF files on scribd.com. Please let me know if you experience any broken links by using the CONTACT ME tab in the toolbar.

  • iMali Matters: February 2008 Issue (Original Copy): A financial literacy publication distributed monthly through all South Afrucan post offices.
  • Community Talk: February 2008 Issue (Original Copy): A community magazine distributed fress in the major metropolitan areas of Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban and Port Elizabeth.


Pro Bono Work

Although I've recently scaled back on pro bono work, I've devoted a lot of time to it in the past, especially over the past 20 years. 

Joburg Advocacy Group

As far as community-based projects are concerned, I founded the Joburg Advocacy Group in 2009 and ran it for four years. The group, which was voluntary and self-funded, advocated for best-practice governance, social justice and environmental protection in the City of Joburg. Our work focused on such issues as the Joburg billing crisis, financial management in the city, acid mine drainage, service delivery, resident/voter rights and water pollution.

The group was disbanded at the end of 2012 as the volume of voluntary work had become too great for the members to manage in addition to their own work and personal commitments.

In 2010, I also founded and acted as project manager for a fixed-term project called the Kensington Community Work Programme, which was run in association with the Expanded Public Works Programme in the run-up to and during the 2010 World Cup. The project provided part-time work for 80 unemployed people, and was aimed at upgrading public spaces in the Johannesburg suburb of Kensington, a hub for a number of World Cup activities.

Animal Protection

In animal protection, I've served on the board of the Johannesburg SPCA, the largest of the SPCAs countrywide, and have done some pro bono work for Friends of the Cat.

I'm also a member of an ad hoc group of activists called Marine Life Defenders, which works for the protection of marine life. As a group, we focus especially on marine mammals, birds and large cartilaginous species, such as sharks and rays, currently being held in captivity in marine parks.

Greenpeace and Avaaz

In a similar vein, I'm a member of and cyberactivist for Greenpeace, and a volunteer and cyberactivist for Avaaz.org, a global web-based movement with "the simple democratic mission of closing the gap between the world we have and the world most people everywhere want". 


In the professional arena, I've been actively involved in mentoring black and female candidates in both businesess and non-profit organisations for many years. I do this on an individual basis, either on request or having personally identified a candidate for mentorship during the course of my own work.

The process is on-going, and covers both formal and informal issues. The objective is to assist the candidate not only with skills development, but also with insight into situational analysis, interpersonal communication, conflict management and career planning.