Kim (third from left in the grey T-shirt) with various people in Singapore, including, on his immediate right, Wayne Hemingway of Hemingway Design and, in the pink shirt and tie combo, Simon Thompson, our esteemed client and marketing director of Honda UK.
I (Kim) was lucky enough recently to be invited by Honda to visit their ‘Diracc’ development in Singapore. A unique form of car sharing. Statistically it works out that each member of the scheme has the choice of sixty cars dotted all over town to use whenever they need. And from an environmental point of view, in a crowded city this means that thirty people are owning just one car.
I visited what they call a ‘pod’. These are dotted all over the city in multi storey car-parks. Using text messaging you check that a car is available, you then just tip up, use your credit card style key to open the car by flashing it over the screen sensor, get in, log in your security number, state where you intend to drop the car off and away you go. Parking is free, and then it’s $2.00 for the first 20 minutes and then $0.25 for every minute after. A little vision of the future methinks.
Our basement has been invaded this morning by a film crew from Channel 4 who are shooting a pilot for a new comedy show called ‘Blunder’. Not quite sure what it was about our basement that appealed to them but perhaps this is just the start and we can start a little sideline in renting out the building for film shoots. Nice to see that as part of their kit they brought a Honda generator with them.
This is John and Liam, our new placement team. We’ve given them one brief and the client promptly pulled that project. So clearly they have the midas touch.
Meanwhile, this is our caff pinboard. Home to random messages and cries for help.
There’s a survey in Campaign today, conducted amongst young people in the industry. Wieden + Kennedy comes out as number 2 agency that people would most like to work at. The rankings were:
- Saatchi & Saatchi
No indication in the survey as to why people see us as being so desirable, but I guess it reflects external perceptions of our work, our clients, our environment and the relationships we have with people in other agencies. Anyway, we’re always trying to attract the best talent, so it’s encouraging to see we’re favourably regarded in comparison to our peers. Of course, the people who work here already may have a different opinion.
Last night we attended a suitably glamorous leaving do at the Hospital in Covent Garden for our Sky client, Barnaby Dawe. After running the pitch in which we were appointed to the Sky One account, he’s now off to be MD of Heart FM. That’s him in between Emma and Matt. Barnaby’s been great to work with and we’ll miss him.
It’s kind of amazing and amusing that I (Neil) have made it into the Guardian’s ‘Power List’ of the top 10 most powerful people in advertising. Not that that is a particularly powerful list, in comparison to, say, the top ten most powerful local authority employees, or top ten most powerful primary school teachers.
In at number 10 with a bullet!
Stephen Brook’s article says:
Winning the biggest advertising prize in the world, the film grand prix at Cannes, this year for its animated advert for Honda, plus picking up a major client in Pizza Hut sees Wieden + Kennedy managing director Neil Christie clinch a place in the advertising top 10, while Lord Saatchi, a partner and founder of M&C Saatchi, slips out of the list after the Conservative party he co-chaired failed to wrest power from Labour in the general election.
Seems a bit unfair on Lord Saatchi for his top level involvement in the Tories’ general election campaign to be unfavourably compared to my humble efforts at W+K. Still, my mum will be very impressed.
Anyway, what am I going to do with all this power? I feel the urge coming on for some arbitrary and wilful decision making…
The light’s on, so someone must be in the padded cell. Who can it be? Let’s have a look inside.
Why, it’s Sam and Stuart, having a meeting.
Well done, Sam and Stuart, you left your shoes outside the cell. Remember the rule: please remove your shoes before going insane.
Our new home in Hanbury Street is now mostly finished. One of the last bits to be completed was the Sherlock Holmes room. This is a meeting area that houses our library of reference books.
Because the room has a big glass front facing onto the beautifully preserved old houses of Wilkes Street, we decided that, rather than a modern office space, it would be nice to have something more in keeping with the early Georgian period of the street. Yes, we know Holmes was significantly later than that and no, the furnishings in the room aren’t authentic to either period but you get the idea.
We’re sure many of you are dying to know what we get up to on reception as all we seem to do is laugh and gossip. So, here it is. Apart from doing the usual of answering phones, booking taxis, making lots of teas and greeting clients, we also have to act as security guards to protect everyone from the passing weirdos who want to come in and take a look around. They don’t seem to understand that we’re not an art gallery, or a library, or a shop, or anything else along those lines and that we are in fact just an office. A lot of them have taken a shine to the self portraits that we have all done, which now decorate three of the walls in reception. Some inquire how much it would cost to buy them, but we’ve told them we can’t put a price on artwork of such a high quality!
In between the influx of our ‘unusual’ visitors and more welcome guests, we perform our daily tasks to the best of our ability and make sure we’re having fun while we do it – we feel it’s important to have a friendly, relaxed atmosphere on the front desk.
Katie and Claire xx
The agency had a great run at yesterday’s NABS 5-a-side competition. After negotiating our way out of a tricky group stage, Our Brave Boys made it all the way to the quarter-finals before succumbing to a strong J. C. Decaux side. To get this far in our debut appearance in a competition containing 60 teams is quite an achievement (really) and gives us something to build on next time around.
Special thanks to Bob who’s been recently been working with Guy ‘Featherlite’ Featherstone in our design department and was lethal up front, Shay ‘Stadium’ Reading for his energy and tenacity, Stuart ‘Stewbacca’ Harkness for his deft touches and pinpoint passes, Frere ‘100 acre’ Woods for sorting out all the admin and Captain Matt ‘biffer’ Boffey for leading the team to victory. Nearly.