Ori­gin Vs Cul­ture

ArabAd - - COVER STORY -

asked Na­bil Sargi, Drive Dentsu’s Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor if the ori­gin of an agency af­fects its cul­ture, know­ing that Drive started out as an in-house agency for Ab­del Latif Jameel, which even­tu­ally be­came af­fil­i­ated with Den­stu. So, is Drive Dentsu, a Saudi, or Ja­panese en­tity and what set of val­ues drives it?

I wish to start by cor­rect­ing your open­ing state­ment. Drive Com­mu­ni­ca­tion was never an in-house agency. In­stead, it sim­ply hap­pens that the agency kicked off its op­er­a­tions in Saudi Ara­bia, with a lo­cal part­ner, to ser­vice its first client: Toy­ota Mo­tors. As you know, this even­tu­ally snow­balled into the de­vel­op­ment of a com­pre­hen­sive MENA Net­work op­er­at­ing a num­ber of brands across a wide spec­trum of in­dus­tries – which is where we still stand to­day. That be­ing said, and to start an­swer­ing your ques­tion, I per­son­ally tend to dif­fer­en­ti­ate be­tween an agency’s ori­gins and its cul­ture. For me, those are two com­pletely dif­fer­ent no­tions, of which only the lat­ter has an im­me­di­ate im­pli­ca­tion on how the agency func­tions, wins busi­ness, iden­ti­fies and de­vel­ops tal­ent. I con­sider the agency’s ori­gin - or rather “na­tion­al­ity” - whether North Amer­i­can, Euro­pean, Asian or oth­er­wise a de­tail that only comes into play in the open­ing min­utes of a cre­den­tials pre­sen­ta­tion. Cul­ture, on the other hand, can be an in­ter­est­ing di­men­sion that could in­deed drive vi­sion, know-how, in­no­va­tion and dif­fer­en­ti­a­tion – only if it’s rel­e­vant, ap­pli­ca­ble and ac­cepted by all con­cerned stake­hold­ers. With this in mind, our cor­po­rate phi­los­o­phy mir­rors that of our mother com­pany: Good In­no­va­tion – built on three key pil­lars: Ideas that reach be­yond the imag­in­able, tech­nol­ogy that crosses the bounds of pos­si­bil­i­ties and en­trepreneur­ship that sur­passes the ex­pected. Through such an in­spir­ing and ac­tion­able plat­form, we strive to demon­strate our abil­ity to de­liver cre­ativ­ity that means busi­ness, be­ing a tes­ta­ment of our deep in­volve­ment with our client part­ners, driv­ing ac­tion­able and per­ti­nent so­lu­tions to a given brand or busi­ness.

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