By Egotist / /
Today’s 32 Under 32 interview is the Vice President, Business Development for FCB – Brooks Day. Take a look at our talk with this rising star on the SF ad scene. We’ll be back with the final two interviews tomorrow and Friday.
Congrats on being chosen as one of the top 32 advertising and marketing professionals under 32. We selected people who really go above and beyond in their work. How do you think you approach your job differently than other people?
I learned early on that business development is a marathon of sprints. In order to succeed in such an environment, you have to be ruthless in prioritization and naturally optimistic. It’s a job that requires you to invest months and months of your life just for the possibility of making it to the final presentation. You have to be extremely confident not only in your work, but also in yourself – and aware that one bad showing has the potential to derail months of work. Focusing on answering the right strategic questions, making a strong point of view, and insisting on an obsessive level of detail have been the keys to our success.
What kind of accounts/projects are you working on these days?
While I can’t elaborate on the specifics of current projects, we are constantly striving to refine our offering to better service our clients and bring the most value to their business. At FCB, this continuing evolution of our capabilities has been essential in helping us gain new clients, like The Nature Conservancy; Trulia, who hired us as its first-ever AOR; and Levi Strauss & Co., who looked to us to create a tailor-made offering for its global brand.
What is it about where you currently work that really pushes you to be better?
FCB is an incredibly open environment that fosters ideas and creativity from every department. Additionally, I am incredibly fortunate to work with an industry titan like Dominic Whittles. He has a remarkable ability to foster a culture that gives his employees the confidence and permission to take risks, even (perhaps especially) with the potential to fail. It’s been his encouragement and trust that have helped me do my best work and succeed.
In thinking over your career so far, what work had made you the proudest?
As someone who is always focused on the road ahead, I don’t often take the time to reflect on past accomplishments. With that said, I’m most proud of having the distinction of leaving every company I’ve worked for in a better place than when I started. I’m also extremely proud of the development and growth of my past teammates, and now have the privilege of watching them flourish and succeed.
We hear you’re involved with a number of local foundations. Tell us about those.
Upon moving to San Francisco in 2007, I sought out ways to become more involved in supporting the homeless community within the Bay Area. By partnering with wonderful organizations like The Bay Area Rescue Mission, San Francisco City Impact, and Cornerstone Church, I’ve had the opportunity to play a small part in helping those in need. It’s been an honor serving with such great organizations that are focused on meeting both the immediate needs of the homeless and also providing long-term rehabilitation. Additionally, I support the Olympic Club Foundation, which is dedicated to providing assistance to young athletes in the Bay Area.
Here’s a ridiculously clichéd interview question for you: Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
I hope to be leading an organization that produces a meaningful product, fosters an inclusive culture, and gives back to the community.
This might be tough, but here’s your chance to give a shout out to one person who has helped you get to where you are today. Go.
I’ve been truly blessed to have mentors at all stages of my life. In the past five years, there is one man who has been incredibly invested and committed to my success. David Flaherty, CEO of BrandForce, has always believed in my ability, encouraged me to take risks, and provided counsel at every major turning point of my career. Thank you, David.