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Jazz Shaper: Alex Myers

Posted on 25 November 2022

Alex Myers is the Founder and Group CEO of Manifest, a leading creative communications agency with studios in London, Manchester, New York, Stockholm and Melbourne.

Elliot Moss

Welcome to the Jazz Shapers Podcast from Mishcon de Reya.  What you are about to hear was originally broadcast on Jazz FM however the music has been cut due to rights issues.

Welcome to Jazz Shapers with me, Elliot Moss, bringing the shapers of the business world together with the musicians shaping jazz, soul and blues.  My guest today is Alex Myers, Founder and Group CEO of Manifest, a creative communications agency and international too.  It was at North Halifax Grammar School that Alex first decided he wanted to create an advertising agency and be the Saatchi and Saatchi of Yorkshire, as he says.  Ten years later, working in the industry and frustrated by its lack of creativity, Alex set out to realise his childhood dream.  He launched Manifest in 2009 in his living room, with no clients, no team and no real background in running a company – no issues there – but with a mission to build brands that changed the world.  Since then, the agency has become one of the most awarded creative networks in the world, with studios in London, Manchester, Melbourne, New York and Stockholm and brands such as Samsung, Virgin, Brew Dog, Sony PlayStation and WWF AND thirty two new clients last year alone, all seeking his team’s counsel.    It’s fabulous to have you on. 

Alex Myers

Thank you very much, nice to be here. 

Elliot Moss

You’ve made it, all those years ago, you sat there thinking about it in Yorkshire and here you are in the Big Smoke, London and we’re broadcasting globally on Jazz FM.  Tell me what a creative communications agency is and why did Alex Myers want to set one up?

Alex Myers

I think it’s difficult because every creative communications agency is pretty wordy and will have their own description and their own definition and it will no doubt involve them saying “unlike any other agency in the world” but I think generally, creative communications is about establishing stories, you know that’s how human beings connect, it’s how we learn, it’s how we understand the world and I think if you don’t proactively construct stories in and around your business then you’re not going to be able to succeed in communicating what it is you do and I think agencies have a superpower of looking from the outside in and being able to see the story clearly, I think sometimes you can be caught in the fog inside a business and think strategically about that kind of thing so, that’s generally what a creative communications agency does, is come in and create two sentences from your two thousand words. 

Elliot Moss

And then when they do that, do they have specialist, do you have specialists in social media and do you have specialists in strategy and what are the other areas, just as, if you were, if you were pitching to me, briefly, as a new potential client, you know what are the craft skills because this is the other thing I think in certain industries, you know what you get in what was historically called ‘the professions’ you know what an accountant does, you know what a lawyer does, hopefully.  Creative communications is much broader, so how have you chosen to focus your efforts?

Alex Myers

Well, I think it’s interesting to start with the strategy, I think when I first finished university and got into agency world and into kind of creative communications, it was very much a case of brands being a representation of your product or service, it was kind of okay, here’s the brand communicating your product to the world, whereas in the last five or ten years I think there’s been a real evolution and your brand is now your product, people buy your product as a way to subscribe to your brand.  If you look at the most successful brands in the world like Nike or Apple and I think therefore, the way that Manifest approach things is always establishing what’s the central idea, what are the values that this brand epitomises that actually have a positive impact on lives of their audiences and then the kind of the craft comes in, okay how are we going to connect with those audiences and not just reach them with messages but actually provide campaigns that they feel they can join, help them be co-creators of this brand, it feeling much more like a community than a company and I think if you look at all of the successful fast growth brands in the world in any category, you could probably describe them as communities rather than companies and I think what Manifest does is establish what’s the central kind of magnetism for this business, for this brand, and then how do we take that to the world as you are absolutely right, through those various channels but if your idea is focussed on a channel, it’s always going to be relatively narrow so the channel is simply a way to distribute a way to connect with or a way to collaborate with your audiences so, digital is obviously central to everything that we do and the specific skillsets around content creation and social media, there’s also earned media, you know paid out of home media, it’s still really valid and really important and you know advertising in general, the number of different channels has fragmented hugely but actually it’s almost more important to have one central message. 

Elliot Moss

The world of communications for someone like you growing up, I mean, you know, I mentioned earlier that you wanted to do this from a young age, do you remember how old you were and do you remember why?

Alex Myers

Yeah, I do actually, I remember the exact moment.  So, our Chief Design Officer at Manifest, Martin Farrar-Smith, is my best friend from school and we were together in Design Technology class and…

Elliot Moss

And how old are you at that time?

Alex Myers

We would have been fifteen and we came to London, The Big Smoke, to look around the Tate Britain and The Design Museum and checking out I guess the cultural hotspots that have shaped design in the UK and a lot of the conversation turned to agencies and we actually met Trevor Beattie, who was friends with our Design teacher, and he was quite an icon in the advertising world at the time, he’d done that Wonderbra ad, you know the Hello Boys advert. 

Elliot Moss

Hello Boys and the NFCUK with Stephen Marks of French Connection.

Alex Myers

Yeah.  Absolutely.

Elliot Moss

Iconic person. 

Alex Myers

Yeah, so he was the one showing us around Tate Britain and it was just really inspiring and I think it felt like a world away from where we were.  I think, you know the way that myself and Martin have always worked is, I write the words and he draws the pictures so to speak, he was always a better designer and I was probably better at articulating what it was we needed to achieve so, and we both kind of went ‘Imagine if we had our own agency’.

Elliot Moss

Can I just say, I love the way writers just, they love their partners but what they’re really saying is, listen, I know what you need to draw, you’re really good at drawing but I’m going to tell you what you’re going to draw.  Just, it was very subtle, but Alex, it was noted.  I’m sure Martin is listening going ‘Oh yeah, I bet’.  I bet that’s what he thinks.

Alex Myers

Yeah, yeah but he’s ‘Yeah, yeah, I’m not just colouring in you know’ but it was just this kind of idea that you can produce work for businesses and brands that meant you can continually have new things coming up.  This idea of an agency was brand new to us that you know, you didn’t just build the same brand over and over and over again, actually you were able to take your experience into different areas and I think, you know, the connection we had with businesses on that course as well, we had to do you know design projects for local restaurants and things like that, I mean it just kind of felt like this is what I want to do but I’ll be honest, the idea kind of mothballed then when I went to University, it was I didn’t really think about after University, I don’t think many people do really, I just kind of pursued what I enjoyed doing, learning more about culture and media and didn’t think there was a job that would allow me to connect all of these dots and then when I came out of University, I kind of reconnected with that bigger idea, when I got involved in agencies, I thought I can do this in terms of the work that they’re doing but actually produce a business that’s not designed to sell or designed to you know make a huge amount of money without my clients noticing but actually producing great work, you know like the work that Trevor Beattie was able to produce that everyone recognised or like Sir John Hegarty was producing at BBH, you know, that old Levi, if anyone’s old enough to remember the Levi’s ad with the guy who’s shrinking his jeans in the…

Elliot Moss

I’m definitely old enough, Alex, you said that very politely but like, it’s clearly obvious that I’m old enough to know this.

Alex Myers

But you know those kind of advertisements were cultural moments and I felt there was an opportunity to create those cultural moments that could actually not just establish progress in selling things but actually establish progress in doing things and improving things and I think that idea has evolved as Manifest has grown, you know, I guess I’ve got central belief that business can improve lives for customers, you know and sometimes in a small non-altruistic way, it might be putting a smile on someone’s face once a day that they wouldn’t have otherwise or getting an extra minute with their kids because they’re setting off later because the trains are running on time, whatever it is but those impacts are what makes the world go round, you know those one percents and to be able to build campaigns around that, that was something that really excited me but I couldn’t find anyone who shared that philosophy. 

Elliot Moss

And thirteen years in, just really briefly, thirteen years in, the purity of what you just described is really enticing and seductive even and persuasive because you’re a person in the world of creative communications but is it harder as the business gets more complicated and the clients get more demanding and there’s just more stuff to do and you’ve got a hundred things to do, is it harder to go what business are we in, what’s the point of this?  And if it is, how do you ensure that you still go back to ‘I want to create impact.  I want to create these cultural moments’.

Alex Myers

I think everything starts and finishes with the work so, one thing that’s great or I guess lucky about us starting in a living room with no reputation and no one knowing who we were was firstly, we were able to make lots of mistakes and nobody noticed but secondly, we produced work for the businesses that were willing to take a punt on a small agency no one knew about so, they were buying the ideas but also they were small and fast growing businesses themselves and we were able to produce work for them that really turned the heads of the bigger brands and those bigger brands said how did you achieve that with such a small budget and such a small brand, when we can’t achieve it with ours?  So, almost out of the blocks, we were able to say in order to do that, you have to work like this, you have to have this strategy, you have to you know, be audience centric instead of focussing on yourselves and you know, those philosophies naturally were part of the DNA of our work and people were coming to us, you know, I want that one kind of vibe and that was great but it was, it was also I guess from a less considered stand point, it wasn’t something we’d planned for but it gave us this blue print with every client that arrived, they needed to follow the Manifest way of doing things, which we were inventing from the ground up, we had no board experience, we had not run agencies before, we didn’t have templates to follow and in that sense, we were able to establish a completely new relationship with brands, which was refreshing for them but the work was really the thing that refreshed the industry and that’s what, you know, that’s just kept people coming to us for what we do and I think we were one of the first agencies where people came to us for a Manifest approach rather than us kind of panel beating our approach to the brief, it was always a collaboration with our clients. 

Elliot Moss

Stay with me for much more from my Business Shaper, it’s Alex Myers, Founder of the Manifest Group.  Right now though, we’re going to hear a taster from the Mishcon Innovation Series, a podcast that you can find on all the major podcast platforms.  Natasha Knight invites business founders to share their industry insights and practical advice for those of you thinking about getting into an industry and starting your very own thing.  In this clip we hear from Andrew Bloch, Co-Founder of multi award-winning PR agency, Frank. 

All our former Business Shapers are available for your delectation on the Jazz Shapers podcast and you can hear this very programme again with Alex if you pop Jazz Shapers into your podcast platform of choice.  Alex Myers, Founder and Group CEO of Manifest, a creative communications agency, is my guest today.  As you were talking, and you can tell me to shut up if this is wrong, but as you were talking about coming to the Big Smoke and obviously you moved from Yorkshire, we hear a lot about levelling up, a lot about you know every part of the country needs to have the same access to opportunity and so on and so forth, was there a bit of a sense though, when you did move from Yorkshire to London that it was a Cinema Paradiso moment, you know that advice from the, I mean it’s one of my favourite films and he says to the young man, “I’d never come back.”  Was there that for you or is the geography totally irrelevant to this conversation?

Alex Myers

I mean, relating back to what I said previously, there was this lustre of London that I kind of connected with, from I guess just the culture that’s available here, from a young age but I’ll be honest, I begrudged having to move to London initially but it was really, I had to, you know, if you’re talking about levelling up, it’s not a level playing field, you know if I wanted to take my career seriously, I needed to move to London, there was no doubt about that, I could absolutely have set up an agency in Yorkshire or you know done work with brands outside of London but there’s no way it would have been able to be as big, there’s no way it would have been able to have the same access to talent because everyone’s moving to London to do that and there has been a slight shift I think as, you know, working has become more hybrid and you’ve been able to move around but London is also a real bubble, you know, and one of the reasons we opened our Manchester studio, we had a brainstorm around the launch of an electric vehicle and one of the people in the brainstorm said, “well, no one drives to work” and I was just, it was a head in hands moment, I was just yes, they do, everyone drives to work outside of London, you know, this is how people get to work and just this idea that if there’s a trend in Shoreditch, it’s a trend everywhere, you know, not everyone’s going vegan, not everyone’s wearing you know kind of hessian jeans or whatever, you know like…

Elliot Moss

Nice hessian jeans, Alex.

Alex Myers

Yeah, thank you. 

Elliot Moss

He’s not wearing hessian jeans, it’s okay. 

Alex Myers

But you know, like it was, it was quite an awakening for me that you know something that was part of the business from an early stage was the honesty that Yorkshire taught me and the humility that Yorkshire taught me and you know that you don’t really realise till you are outside of where you come from.  So, we opened a studio in Manchester because I thought it’s almost two kind of script-like to open in Leeds or in Bradford so, Manchester is a fantastic powerhouse of talent, of creative talent and it just felt like if we could have that, we could balance it out and weirdly, we’d already expanded internationally then so I realised the power of culture to influence the business as a whole, you know, we learnt so much about productivity from New York, we learnt so much about sustainability and equality from Scandinavia that, you know, we can bring that authenticity and that creativity from the north to our business by opening in Manchester so, that was a big motivation for me, the quality of work, it wasn’t about finding a new market or new clients and I think that is kind of how my perception has evolved.  I kind of realised I had to go to London but I think underneath maybe subconsciously I begrudged it and now I enjoy being in London, I’m here by choice, you know I love, I love this city, it feels like the capital city of the world but I also feel for the rest of the UK that is absolutely left out, you know, and disregarded you know and I think a lot of the talent in these cities, in London, in New York and in Stockholm, they don’t come from London, New York or Stockholm, they come from all over the country and it’s great to have this crucible but it’s also unfair that you’re bleeding these other cities, these other territories, these other you know countries in their own right, you know it’s the Democratic Republic of Yorkshire, you know, to some extent, it feels like its own country and you’re bleeding them dry not just of talent and of people but actually, you know, of commercial opportunity or of entrepreneurship, of I mean all of the things that you know London is, has in bucketloads isn’t being redistributed across the country and yeah, it’s a political question still I think levelling up is just, it’s a mirage, it’s an illusion, you know it’s the worst of the job that I do, which is if we give it a name, it’s a thing, we don’t need to make it a thing, you know and I think sometimes one of the negative aspects of the creative industries is that you create a story to disguise the truth but you have this opportunity to create a story that’s from the truth and there’s very much a Dark Arts in the world that I’m in and I think, you know, not to get too Harry Potter about it but you’ve got a choice, are you light or shade, you know, and I’m completely going off on a tangent but the point to me was that you know London has this incredible attraction and magnetism and we shouldn’t lose that but we also should understand what we’re losing from elsewhere in the country and the impact that it’s having and you know equity and equality is important, I think. 

Elliot Moss

You’re a creative person and that’s pretty clear and you’re very articulate too and I’m pleased you’re doing the words, not the pictures, I can imagine Alex you’re maybe not so good at the drawing bit. 

Alex Myers

No, absolutely not. 

Elliot Moss

But conceptually of course.  Amazing.  You’re running a business now, a good few million pound turnover, fair number of people, 70 people a bit more now?

Alex Myers

Yeah, yeah, 70 plus, yeah. 

Elliot Moss

In about five locations, four or five locations, my maths isn’t brilliant, that’s a lot of stuff going on and from being in the advertising world as I was, feels like a long time ago, there is the kind of the facile distinction between the creative person and the businessperson and I know that’s not, I don’t think that’s true, I think everyone’s a bit of both.  How have you managed to straddle the worlds of focussing on brilliant work and running a brilliant business?

Alex Myers

I mean, that I think has been the biggest epiphany for me since setting up the business.  I had no idea how much fun it was going to be running a company.  I had no idea how much creative opportunity there was.  I think you can run a business on rails if you know how a business is run.  I’m quite lucky in that I didn’t, you know, so everything from appraisal structures to, you know, incentive schemes to new business approach, was all kind of invented from the ground up.  With the central idea that it doesn’t need to be boring, you know we can have fun with everything and I think fun as a business strategy is massively underrated, if you are having fun, you are generally doing really well at it and it becomes magnetic for those people around you too.  So, you know the appraisal system that we built, we realised that appraisals or reviews for people in teams didn’t take into account potential, you know, if you look at the value of a footballer, it’s all about the potential, they can be at the top of their game but if they’re 31, the value is dropped, you know, there’s not enough potential in the future and we actually therefore stole our appraisal system from Football Manager, the video game, at the time, we kind of built those radar charts to build a better team because, you know, it doesn’t matter how good Lionel Messi is, if, he’s probably crap in nets so, you know you need to have that good team.  I mean, yeah, we had loads of fun with, when we learnt about behavioural economics, we learnt about you know why bad decisions are made, I think the world’s obsessed with artificial intelligence, I’m much more interested in real stupidity and the idea that you know we all make, we make decisions that are terrible every day and you know business I guess just has this status quo that sometimes just runs and we’ve always questioned that, we’ve always had fun with it.  So, for instance, when you join Manifest, for the first three months there’s an incentive for you to leave so, there’s fifteen hundred quid if you want to, whatever the currency is in each studio, but fifteen hundred quid if you leave right now because the truth is, you know within the first three months if this is the job for you or not but normally you’re nervous about leaving a job because there’s no kind of commercial incentive, right, you’re worried about are you going to make ends meets between this job and the next and so we provide a commercial incentive but then if you don’t leave after your probation period, after that three months, you have to give the fifteen hundred pounds to the person who made you feel most welcome and you know, rewarding cultural contribution has been huge for us, you know, the culture of the business, it’s just fun to work in. 

Elliot Moss

Wait, so that fifteen hundred that you didn’t give to Jane who didn’t leave, Jane can then allocate…

Alex Myers

Jane chooses who it goes to.

Elliot Moss

And then there’s real currency, fifteen hundred, goes to whoever it is that’s been…

Alex Myers

Yeah, yeah, so you might, you know it…

Elliot Moss

Have you got any jobs going?  I could do quite a lot, I’m really good at making tea, I’m very tidy.

Alex Myers

Yeah, well that’s all we need actually, that’s both boxes ticked.  But you know that kind of thing, it’s fun trying it and I think sometimes people say well what if it doesn’t work?  Then it doesn’t work and you just do something else, you know, like isn’t that life and I think being a creative in a business position has been nothing but a benefit for me.  I think, you know, more businesses need to be creative in how they approach things and approaching, you know, how you run a business like a campaign, you know with that kind of blend of commercial awareness and creative integrity is kind of where the fun comes from.

Elliot Moss

Stay with me for my final chat.  Hopefully, it will be fun, with Alex Myers.  And we’ve got music from the RH Factor, that’s all coming up in just a moment. 

Alex Myers is my Business Shaper just for a few more minutes.  You’ve talked a lot about saying stuff versus doing stuff and forces for good and purpose and all that.  You have chosen to build your own brands, you’ve put your money where your mouth is Alex, not just a good aphorism but actually you’re doing things.  I assume that’s because you can and it’s fun because we talked a bit about fun, what other things, unintended consequences have come about from actually creating brands?

Alex Myers

So yeah, I mean it kind of came about organically that you know as you said at the start of the conversation, Manifest exists to build brands that change the world but we felt quite hypocritical if we weren’t building them ourselves and Manifest we try and change, you know the creative industries through D&I and through you know improving the industry as a whole but we can’t empathise or be compassionate with our clients without necessarily being them and putting ourselves in their shoes so, a couple of opportunities arose where people had business ideas and they needed branding to launch it as the central foundation now is brand and digital, you know build and things like that for a lot of companies and people said rather than us being able to pay you because we don’t have a budget, can we, can you build it with us, you know and you have, you know part of the business so, that’s kind of where our Ventures division make came from and now we have equity in co-founded businesses that you know ranks in the millions, which is you know on the balance sheet, which is incredible but some of those, all of those companies have a real social impact so, we work with Raws in Sweden so, they came to us, it was a guy who had an idea to turn the Swedish reed harvest into natural straws, so using reeds as straws rather than plastic or paper and he called it Strawbuddy so, firstly we were like, well we need to change the name and secondly, we’ve got a great strapline ‘Straws that don’t suck’ so we had the strapline first and built from there and then we built a business called Raws so, Raws produces alternatives to plastic from natural materials or nature’s answer so, reeds are nature’s straw basically, you can have any colour you want as long as it’s beige and it’s a very successful business in Scandinavia and about to launch in the UK and has been scaled up.  And then ecology for instance is our subscription to carbon offsets that also reforests the planet so we’ve planted, the original idea was to plant a forest big enough to see from the International Space Station but we did that within a few months, you know we’re in the tens, nearly hundreds of millions of trees planted as a result of the, you know, the subscriptions from individuals, families and businesses that are able to offset their carbon emissions through gold standard carbon credits but also we provide advice for them to reduce the bill of that subscription by improving their performance and improving their own environmental efficiency so, that ecology business again has flown dramatically in the three years we’ve been involved with it. 

Elliot Moss

Considering there’s so many things going on here, you’re incredibly clearsighted about what you’re up to.  Just before we, I have to say goodbye to you and ask you for your song choice, if there’s one more thing that you want to do that’s big and that shows that you really mean business, as a person and also in your business, what’s that look like?  What’s that going to be?

Alex Myers

There’s so many milestones that we’ve met, you know building businesses, I think we wanted to expand internationally, I would love for us to build a network that demonstrates that diversity, equality and inclusion can happen in this industry and therefore eradicate the negative impact so, just so everyone’s aware, the communications industry is 96% white and produces 60% of the content you read, now there’s nothing wrong with being white but that comes with natural bias and that natural bias is baked into the content and ideas that you create, which means there’s a huge legacy to our industry not being diverse and inclusive so, we need to change that.  If I can move the needle somehow in that area, that would be amazing.  If the business can do that or the clients that we work with can do that because, you know, there’s probably only the legal industry that has a bigger negative legacy from its lack of diversity and inclusion and we mentioned before about you know just where you come from, you know limiting or expediting your professional opportunity, that should not happen and business has a place to change that, probably more so, we can’t sit around waiting for Governments, you know I think if there’s one central idea I’ve got, it’s that business can change the world for the better so we’d better all go and do it. 

Elliot Moss

It’s been brilliant talking to you.  I hope business can change the world for the better as well, I’m with you on that one.  Just before I let you go, what’s your song choice and why have you chosen it?

Alex Myers

So, I’ve chosen Every Time I Sing the Blues by Buddy Guy.  I was with my, our managing partner in London, Ali Maynard James, we were at a client’s wedding in Chicago and we were meant to fly back to New York to our studio there and the snowstorm hit and we ended up stuck in a, in Chicago for a day and we stumbled into a blues bar and it was Buddy Guy’s blues bar and Buddy Guy was playing.  Now, everyone in there seemed to be aware that this was a massive thing and I don’t know if it was impromptu or what but we didn’t, we didn’t know anything about blues, we didn’t know anything about Buddy Guy and then I got the flight back to New York in the end when the snow cleared and I watched a documentary on Buddy Guy and became a huge fan but also that song specifically, I love it but also he talks about telling the truth every time he sings the blues and I think, you know, the truth is often hard to hear, right, or it’s hard to feel and I think there’s something in that in terms of a professional connection too that you know as I said before, people think our industry is built from myth but it’s actually about building truths and in giving them an equal billing and I think the blues kind of does that too. 

Elliot Moss

That was Buddy Guy featuring Eric Clapton, Every Time I Sing the Blues, the song choice of my Business Shaper today, Alex Myers.  Your brand is your product.  The product is your product but actually, your brand can be your product too.  What a great way of putting it.  Fun is a business strategy, who’d have thought it but he’s absolutely right when he says that and more businesses should take that onboard.  And finally, that brilliant point, the bigger point, business can change the world for the better, I really hope it can.  That’s it from me and Jazz Shapers, have a lovely weekend.

We hope you enjoyed that edition of Jazz Shapers.  You’ll find hundreds of more guests available for you to listen to in our archive, to find out more just search Jazz Shapers in iTunes or your favourite podcast platform or head over to Mishcon.com/JazzShapers.

Alex set up Manifest in 2009 in his living room with a mission to 'build brands that change the world’. He had no clients, no team and no real background in running a company.  

Since then, the agency has become one of the most awarded creative networks in the world, picking up hundreds of industry accolades over the years and Manifest is the reigning PR Week International Agency of the Year, and Alex is Campaign Magazine’s Global Agency Leader of the Year. In addition to all of this, Alex sits on a range of boards for non-profit organisations as a non-exec director, bringing his expertise and ideas to the third sector.   

Highlights

In the last five or ten years I think there’s been a real evolution and your brand is now your product; people buy your product as a way to subscribe to your brand. 

If you look at all of the successful fast growth brands in the world in any category, you could probably describe them as communities. 

I felt there was an opportunity to create those cultural moments that could not just establish progress in selling things but establish progress in doing things and improving things. 

I’ve got central belief that business can improve lives for customers. 

One thing that’s great about us starting in a living room with no reputation and no one knowing who we were was that we were able to make lots of mistakes and nobody noticed, but secondly, we produced work for the businesses that were willing to take a punt on a small agency no one knew about. 

We were inventing from the ground up, we had no board experience, we had not run agencies before, we didn’t have templates to follow and in that sense, we were able to establish a completely new relationship with brands. 

Something that was part of the business from an early stage was the honesty that Yorkshire taught me and the humility that Yorkshire taught me - and you know that you don’t really realise util you are outside of where you come from. 

I had no idea how much fun it was going to be running a company. I had no idea how much creative opportunity there was. 

I think fun as a business strategy is massively underrated - if you are having fun, you are generally doing really well at it and it becomes magnetic for those people around you too. 

I think being a creative in a business position has been nothing but a benefit for me. More businesses need to be creative in how they approach things - that kind of blend of commercial awareness and creative integrity is kind of where the fun comes from. 

I would love for us to build a network that demonstrates that diversity, equality and inclusion can happen in this industry. 

There’s a huge legacy to our industry not being diverse and inclusive so, we need to change that. If I can move the needle somehow in that area, that would be amazing.   

My central idea is that business can change the world for the better, so we’d better all go and do it.   

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