More than 500 of Australia and New Zealand’s agency heads and executives converged in Sydney yesterday as part of WPP AUNZ’s inaugural Leadership Day, aimed at boosting collaboration and fostering strong management.
Held at the Sydney Theatre Company, a stellar line up of speakers explored the concept of leadership for those at the helm of WPP AUNZ’s 80+ agencies, including former treasurer and Nine Entertainment Director Peter Costello, Victoria Cross Recipient and Seven Queensland GM Ben Roberts- Smith, inspirational lawyer and refugee Deng Adut and President of the Australian Council for International Development (ACFID) and former ALF Commissioner, Sam Mostyn.
Hosted by Nine presenter Erin Molan, the day also featured speakers from Tesla, AKQA, Telstra and panel discussions on the future of Artificial Intelligence and media content featuring Google, Nova, carsales.com, plus the heads of News Ltd and Nine Entertainment.
“There’s a perfect storm of disruption in the industry right now with pressure from a range of outside sources and headwinds from the economy. We have incredible talents among our leaders and their teams, and as a collective, we are in a strong position to work and grow despite these pressures, while continuing to find innovative solutions for our clients,” explained WPP AUNZ CEO Mike Connaghan.
“But it’s also important for these leaders and executives to take time out and hear and learn from each other, and some of the bravest and most innovative leaders in the country on how they are keeping ahead of the curve. It was an inspirational day with a bounty of lessons for all of us.”
Connaghan said the leadership day was the first in a series of new training and development opportunities for staff, with the WPP AUNZ Academy also launched during the day aimed at providing bespoke, ‘business course’ style training for its 5500 group staff.
Collaboration between agencies was also celebrated with the WPP AUNZ’s first ‘horizontality’ award announced, for integrated campaign ‘Bringing the Bird to Birdsville’. The campaign utilised experts from across Ogilvy Sydney, Maverick, Ogilvy PR, MediaCom, Geometry Global and Ogilvy X, representing “the best outcome possible when agencies pool their talent for the benefit of clients,” Connaghan said.