The Week: I-Q - The Internet Question - Can clients make good agency chief execs?

Most agencies are now part of conglomerates run by bean-counters, who are as driven to make next quarter's numbers as the clients are. The need for an immediate ROI is driving both agencies and clients. So I guess in the final analysis, agency CEOs/MDs are in exactly the same boat as client CEOs/MDs. That's why so much of the end product is so bad. - George Parker

Many clients have a far better grasp of all the different aspects that successful businesses require (than agency people do), and they realise where advertising fits into the larger marketing mix. This, if coupled with clever creative advertising, can provide a springboard to larger billings, and provide benefits for the agency's brands. Some ex-client agency heads either view advertising as a necessary evil (which leads to undercutting and pedestrian, conservative advertising) or believe the only form of communication the brand should do is through the channels they have experienced before, in order to ensure they can keep a handle on the ROI. - Will Humphrey

A client is more likely to make a success of a CEO role than an agency exec moving to a senior marketing role, and there are plenty of examples to back up that view. - D Walley.

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