Caroline Foster Kenny

Caroline Foster Kenny

Chief executive UK and global president client solutions

IPG Mediabrands

Contact me
  • 07974 259162
  • CFosterKenny
  • 42 St John's Square, London, EC1M 4EA, United Kingdom
My Character:
  • Good egg
  • Powerful
Work email

Bye-bye the decade with no name. What are you relieved to draw a line under?

That big is beautiful in media. It's an outdated notion. In our fast-changing world with increasing opportunities for biddable media, "big" is now more likely to be associated with slow and silo. Agility and integration is the new media advantage.

What’s your biggest hope for the decade ahead?

That media agencies can step up to the table and lead the strategic agenda by partnering clients to drive business and brand growth solutions. We've got a huge opportunity ahead of us, we must take it. And, of course, it goes without saying, solve climate change and end world poverty.

And what’s top of your professional to-do list for the 2020s?

I know I go on about "agility" but it remains the number-one priority now and for the foreseeable future. There’s a good chance that media businesses that can’t flex around the needs of clients won’t make it to 2030.

You have to job swap with someone in our industry for one month. Who would it be with and why?

It would have to be with the CMO of one of our key clients. It would be a fantastic opportunity to understand the challenges we collectively face from the other side. I would love to make this happen (somehow) as it would be such a valuable experience.

Who is your best friend in the industry and why?

Can I say my advisory board? Initiated last year, we established a second board at Mediabrands to bring diversity of thought to our leadership team. Made up of some of our most brilliant junior talent, they help to keep us real and relevant.

What do you think the Friday feeling is?

On Fridays I tend to work from home. For me, it's about getting things done and taking stock so I can head into the weekend with a clear(er) conscience.

Who or what would you put into room 101 and why?

The archaic notion that we should be chained to our desks between specific hours of the day. We have technology and KPIs. Some of us have families and we all have interests outside of work. I really don’t understand the resistance to flexible working that still prevails in some quarters.

If you could uninvent one piece of technology, what would you choose and why?

The petrol engine. Wouldn’t the world be a more pleasant place if the electric car had caught on back when Queen Victoria was still on the throne?

In the spirit of embracing failure… What has been your biggest screw-up?

Not signing up to every three-year share option I was ever offered, thinking to myself: "Surely, I won't still be here in another three years." Very poor judgment on my behalf.

What do you do to stay match fit?

Being open to ideas and listening to others. I mean real, active listening, not just nodding along while thinking about my to-do list. It’s a skill we all have to learn and it is easier said than done.

What would be your darts walk-on music and why?

Have no idea. I don't know what appropriate or otherwise "walk-on music" for darts may be. Poison Arrow?

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