Joint chief executives, Adam & Eve/DDB
Despite being appointed joint chief executives in 2016, it was in 2019 with the departures of two of the agency’s founders, David Golding and James Murphy, that Goff and Einav were required to show their mettle.
The pair won coveted pitches in the UK and globally, scooping Virgin Media, PlayStation and Lucozade, putting the agency in second place in Campaign’s new-business league. The body of work they enabled was spectacular, too, which is why Adam & Eve/DDB was also named Campaign’s Agency of the Year 2019 (as well as Agency of the Decade). With campaigns including "Mind control experience" and "Sandpaper" for Marmite, "Bridges on bridges" for Amstel and "Excitable Edgar" for John Lewis Partnership, the agency was once again on top of its game.
Under their leadership, Adam & Eve/DDB increased billings to £350m, with revenues rising by 9% in 2019 and 42% since 2016. They are also chief executives of Adam & Eve/NYC, and their "adam&everyone" ethos cultivated an atmosphere that contributed to the agency’s recognition as one of Campaign’s Best Places to Work 2019. Among staff development initiatives, as well as insurance and financial benefits and an extensive learning and development programme, Einav and Goff have introduced family-friendly practices including shared parental leave, enhanced pay and flexible working.
In 2019, the agency partnered Talking Talent to offer coaching for those who are starting or returning from maternity leave, new fathers, working parents and managers. Its "Tackling Unconscious Bias" workshop has been revamped and it is mandatory for all employees to attend.
This year, under Goff and Einav, the agency relaunched its employee-led affiliation groups to drive positive action in specific focus areas: 195, which supports people and initiatives focusing on ethnic and cultural diversity; Eve, which champions gender equality; Working Parents, which provides support and mentorship to parents and maternity-leave returners; and Pride in Talent, which supports LGBT+ employees. The agency is also a Stonewall Diversity Champion.
Adam & Eve/DDB, a CALM-affiliated shop, has also trained 25 mental-health first-aiders. New initiatives for this year include: hosting Young London Leading – an initiative empowering young Londoners to step up as leaders by identifying and solving social issues in their communities and building employability skills in the process.
One judge said: "Loved the clear and concise articulation of their strategy for the agency internally and externally. Brilliant creative work borne out by their new-business wins. Some great initiatives to develop their people and accelerate diversity and inclusivity within the industry."
Founding partner, Lucky Generals
Calcraft showed outstanding leadership qualities in 2019, setting out a bold two-pronged strategy for Lucky Generals that paid off. Among its highlights was the launch of an office in New York, despite all the costs and risks that entails. In just nine months, it built billings of about $85m. Wins included five brands from AB InBev, plus ongoing assignments from Celebrity Cruises, cloud communications provider Vonage and wedding website The Knot.
Lucky Generals achieved all this while continuing to develop its UK business. Despite the potential distraction of the US opening, the agency didn’t lose any clients and won further UK-led assignments from Amazon, AB InBev and Taylors, while also scooping Zoopla against tough competition.
As a result, the agency income was boosted and profits rose by 59%. Meanwhile it swelled its ranks by 33% and kept staff churn to 7%. An outspoken champion of diversity, Calcraft is everything you’d want from a modern leader.
Chief executive, McCann Worldgroup UK
As chief executive of McCann Worldgroup UK, Lund oversees an agency network with the broadest footprint and highest revenue in the UK, covering offices in London, Manchester, Birmingham, Cardiff, Glasgow, Leeds, Bristol and Milton Keynes. Last year was Lund’s five-year anniversary at the group and its revival can be attributed in part to the collaborative, strategic model he has implemented within this key market as exemplified by multi-disciplinary, cross-agency work for major clients including Microsoft, L’Oréal, Vauxhall and Aldi UK.
Alongside the creative and strategic turnaround under Lund’s tenure, which has resulted in four years of double-digit growth, he has placed human values at the core of the company’s ethos, ensuring that everyone has a voice to help fulfil his belief that advertising can be a force for positive social change. Lund is an authority on creativity and the business/socioeconomic landscape across the UK, helping to shape the industry through his leadership of organisations, including as chairman of Asbof and AA’s Media Smart and Children’s Panel.
Nohr is not a man to stand still. For three decades he has built the businesses, organisations and people around him – 2019 was no exception. It was the year Fold7 realised its potential, entering the top 30 creative agencies in the UK and Campaign’s Best Places to Work for the first time, growing its Diageo, Carlsberg and Amazon Audible business, creating the sales-transforming Carlsberg "New brew", leading to the lager being voted into Campaign’s top eight brands of the year, and culminating in the sale to next-generation independent marketing services group, Miroma. In his first year as chair of the IPA’s Commercial Leadership Group, Nohr addressed one of the most critical issues facing the industry: how
to move beyond the cost-plus-hours-based model and reverse the continued downward commercial pressure on agencies. And, as chair of charity JW3, he championed a social-action agenda, backing its mission to be a beacon of progressiveness.
Chief executive, TBWA\London
Since joining TBWA\London as chief executive in October 2017, Tate has played an instrumental part in the agency’s turnaround, helping it get its mojo back in a tough climate. Her leadership has generated a 20% increase in clients in 2019 alone, winning new business from McVitie’s, Go Ahead!, Jacob’s, Carr’s and Carwow. Since the arrival of TBWA\London’s new leadership team, the creative product has improved drastically, with headturning work such as Beco’s "Steal our staff". Furthermore, Plastic Oceans UK’s "Future fish & chips" was recently shortlisted for a D&AD Impact award, having also been cited as one of this year’s best "green marketing" initiatives by Campaign. This agency evolution is underpinned by Tate’s emphasis on building a dynamic and inclusive company culture. This includes the introduction of a weekly employee feedback app, progressive approaches towards work-life balance and hiring new talent, such as strategy director Chris Herbert-Lo.