Every week my Monday morning starts with a catch-up with Sue Clarke, our head of digital. Digital is our biggest team and expanding fast so I like to start the week focussing on it. I’m not sure if Sue shares my enthusiasm for a Monday morning catch-up.
After that, Ellie Ring, who runs the new business team, organises an ERV (Emergency Rendezvous). My survival technique for all internal meetings is to leave the meeting with as few action points for me as possible – and ideally none. This ends badly with eight actions.
A couple more internal meetings follow, including one with a new starter in our SEO team. I then meet someone who we are in the middle of recruiting from another agency – I like to meet people personally before they start and explain a bit about our unique culture. I hope I haven’t put her off!
"Lunch" happens at about 2:30 and is sushi at my desk.
Later in the afternoon I realise I have lost the October pay review spreadsheet on a laptop that died last week. Fortunately our IT guys manage to rescue the file – and the7stars can all get paid – phew.
I get a few emails from people who are interested in my involvement with Blackwood Seven, a new AI platform launching imminently. It’s such early days that I really don’t have many answers – except that I think the B7 guys are smart and will do well, and we are keen to partner with forward-thinkers in the industry.
I realise I have forgotten to book a Monday evening yoga class and convince Natalie, my yoga buddy and former the7stars colleague, that we can try something called Reformer Pilates instead. Reformer Pilates turns out to be a very strange set of stretches done with the assistance of colour-coded springs, wrist and ankle stirrups, and a moving bench. We manage not to fall off anything and only get the giggles twice.
I start with a run-through of the projects our data team is working on.
After that my attention turns to The Bountiful Cow, our new agency that will be launching late in November. Everyone is starting to get very excited while Henry Daglish, who will run the business, is making the most of his last few weeks of freedom and holidaying hard. So I catch up with his team who are working feverishly on the launch plans.
After a lunchtime client meeting we have our quarterly review with our Kinetic team – their CEO Stuart Taylor brings in his top team for a meeting that is always informative and fun.
Wednesday always starts with the7stars Company Meeting. It’s an institution. Today we welcome two new starters, we talk about our live campaigns for Discovery, Affordable Art Fair, Suzuki S-Cross, and Iceland. We have great input from across the company – a review of our recent awards and press articles, some tips and feedback about being a better buddy to new starters, and a constructive chat about recycling. The best thing about our company is that all the initiatives come from the team – my job is really just to time-keep the meeting.
I meet an interesting start-up looking for feedback on a new DOOH technology, grab a quick lunch and return for a two-hour meeting with our digital data team and Liam Mullins. Liam and I had mixed expectations but we both agree the meeting is inspiring.
Dinner is a board-to-board with Exterion where we discuss TFL, data (again) and Liam entertains us all with a game he invents for the occasion.
Today I have breakfast with Matt Teeman who has just joined Primesight. Matt shares his new vision for the business.
I get into work in time for our new business meeting with the big account project team (BAPS). As usual, the meeting glides seamlessly from agency gossip to live pitches.
I skip lunch as I am now starting to focus on the evening’s activity – the Media Week Awards. It’s been great fun co-chairing the awards with Simon Daglish but I know the evening is going to entail a short speech to a mere 1,000+ people – as well as a lot of people asking why they did/didn’t win various awards. To make it even more challenging I don’t even know the results in advance.
So, with some trepidation Dags and I head down to Grosvenor House while Immediate Media hosts drinks in the7stars bar for the agency. The evening turns out to be a success and I have great fun catching up with old mates and colleagues – as well as joining the7stars crew who are owning the dance floor. We have won a gold and two silvers so we are celebrating hard.
We have a flexible working policy, "flexible Fridays". Everyone has to work core hours (10-4:30) and attend all meetings but are free to start early and leave early or vice versa. After last night’s festivities a few people seem to be opting for the late shift.
I pop in to a meeting with Iceland to congratulate them on their week – they have won Good Housekeeping’s Tried and Tested for their mince pies and turkeys. Lunch is a bloody mary and a steak sandwich with a few of the team, and the afternoon is a kick-off meeting for a retailer brief we are working on.
As I leave work I realise it’s been quite a week – we have won three awards, passed on our Agency of the Year baton to the very deserving PHD, caught up with almost the entire outdoor industry and made more progress with a number of the new initiatives we are currently working on. The one thing I’ve forgotten to do is write this article…
Age: No way. I have just celebrated a big birthday and don’t want to talk about it.
Favourite media: This week seems to have been all about posters.
My biggest inspiration: My folks