4am Saatchi & Saatchi, a privately held company, operates under Saatchi & Saatchi proven agency model. However, the 41-year-old company has experienced lots changes over the years, ranging from media buying to creative performance to digital business transformation. Although these strategies have proven successful, the need and hungriness to evolve continues.
How to prove growing value in these VUCA times?
In a world of accelerated change, a strategy cannot be formulated by top management alone. So, in order to accelerate and involve key players, I conducted the strategic development along 4 main areas:
A) Stakeholders Analysis
B) Strategic Formulation
C) Strategic Analysis
D) Strategic Implementation
A. Stakeholders Analysis
Change is not easily welcomed and most people don’t understand why change is needed. Before developing any strategy, I established the level of resistance and cynicism the company would face towards strategy implementation. Is the ground fertile for the change? Who are the primary stakeholders that will help us or block our way? How many roadblocks will we find and how will we overcome them?
To answer these and many other questions, I conducted an online survey where agency stakeholders could select their level of identification with the statements presented. I conducted in-depth interviews with Business Unit Directors and High Performance Personnel to identify major pains, gains, and jobs to be done. I also revisited exit interviews and talked with former employees to understand what made them leave.
B. Strategic Formulation
The creative industry main capital is human. I had to understand not only the Central American culture and background but to contextualize my findings in a human framework. What do our people really care about? What do our clients need? What generates value for both of them?
After the Human Experience Assessment, I conducted weekly Design Thinking sessions first with the CEO and then integrating A-team players and outside advisors. The main goals for this sessions were:
- To avoid tunnel vision.
- To open space for candid conversation.
- To empower people to develop and own the solutions.
C. Strategy Analysis
Along with the CEO, we presented the strategic framework to the managing level directors to assess feasibility from Operations and Financial point of view.
On a Director’s level, I prepared a Business Development Deck, including research results, methodologies, and frameworks, analysis and conclusions, roadmaps and workflow diagrams among others, both for Operations reference and documentation.
D. Strategy Implementation
I developed 4 key pillars for implementation considering:
- Responsibility: Work profiles and Capabilities Units redesign.
- Learning: Learning and Intellectual Development Program.
- Recognition: Talent Recognition System.
- Joy: Day-to-Day Leadership and day-to-day operations.
After all strategy development, we needed to brand our value proposition and make it accessible to all internal and external stakeholders. After all, we are transforming the way we work, from inside out.
I crafted the branding brief to all 4am Saatchi & Saatchi creative agencies
in Central America to develop the visual identity for our new workstyle and methods, selecting 4am Saatchi & Saatchi Honduras creative development.
By 2018, strategy implementation is led by our regional CEO, local COO and CFO and all Leadership team including General Creative Director, Insights & Strategy Director, Experience Director and Media & Technology Director.