A view from the top

By Moray MacLennan, campaignlive.co.uk, Thursday, 18 July 2013 08:00AM

To set the record straight, a typical week at "the top" does not involve flitting from Geneva to New York to Cape Town in the company jet, meeting world leaders, before setting up a foundation to help the poor of the world. Some of my weeks are like this, but it's not typical.

A view from the top

When I was at "the bottom", my weeks were largely taken up by making advertising happen. Now they can be filled with acquisitions in India or starting up in Stockholm. There is more variety.

But this week, you’ll be thrilled to learn that I am desk-bound in London and my days are glued together by the same things that glue all our days together – gossip, espresso, Tweets, gossip, reading, meetings and Facebook.

Sandwiched in between, I have asked for a review of the work produced by the UK office over the past quarter. Boring for the teams, but critical for me – while spinning plates around the world, it’s easy to lose touch with what we are making.

A decision on mobile investment in Asia. A decision on marketing the network – we are always trying to do something to push the international new-business peanut forward.

A decision on holiday for February. A decision on venue for next WWM – LA or Sydney. It’s a tricky one, but Sydney.

Conversations with the new New York office. Jeff and Pierre (the chief executive and the creative director) are putting the finishing touches to their idea for Gay Pride (virtualpride.org, if you’re interested). Stockholm updates me on its latest win (its success since starting up in January is even beginning to irritate me). Chat with Lara in KL about their tenth anniversary conference in September.

Weekly plc meeting – always a joy. Actually, that’s a bit of a cheap shot as it is not so much about numbers, but more about growth with Maurice, Jeremy, Bill and David.

A quick nip up to St John’s Wood to watch my eight-year-old’s gym display. He wins the headstand competition for the third year running, and I couldn’t be more proud. I just wish he hadn’t made the "loser" sign to the other boys.

Lunch with The Marketing Academy – apparently, I am a "marketing legend". The audience glaze over as I talk about my favourite subject for an hour-and-a-half: me.

Reasonably busy evenings. The launch of House of Peroni, our pitch-winning idea for the brand, and it is stunning. I say to the client that I may well be a frequent visitor, as my daughter’s school is just up the road, but am somewhat deflated by his observation that I may feel slightly out of place given my life-stage.

Sit on a panel with Tesco, Virgin and RSA. I think I managed to hold up the agency end, telling the client community that they would be surprised at the effect that a simple "thank you" and "well done" can have. A beer and curry reunion with fellow lawyers from Christ College, Cambridge – haven’t seen a couple of them for 20-plus years. We all agree that we haven’t changed a bit.

Thursday: receive news of the BASF win, the world’s largest chemical company. Have a glass of Champagne. It’s still the wins and the work that get you out of bed in the morning.

Friday is, of course, Wimbledon. Yes, it’s the day of Djokovic versus Del Potro and Murray versus the tall Pole. Right now, "the top" is feeling good.

Moray MacLennan is the chief executive of M&C Saatchi Worldwide

This article was first published on campaignlive.co.uk

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