DE&I Fuelling Unexpected Creativity at DDB North America

DDB North America CEO Justin Thomas-Copeland speaks to LBB about how Unexpected Works, the network’s new campaign and vision, is informing his leadership of the region.

“It’s more than a campaign. It manifested in a campaign but you’ve got to see it as a mindset, as intent and as an ambition. If we get this right it will go to the heart of our culture and to the heart of our operational model.”

Justin Thomas-Copeland, CEO of DDB North America, and I are discussing Unexpected Works, a campaign and evolved brand promise that the global agency network has devised for itself, the overarching message being that creativity is at its most powerful when it’s unexpected.

“It’s given a real focus to the creative unlocking of the business,” adds Justin. “It’s given our people a real licence to rock up to clients with new thoughts. If I was an account director again in an agency that says ‘Unexpected Works’, you are going to have to step out of my way because I’m really going to live that, I’m going to take licence and know that I’m in a safe place where I’m going to be encouraged to do that. I’m not going to have to swallow the Lean Six Sigma or the ‘learn fast book’ of all of those sort of cliches, I’m actually in a place where they’re asking me to do that: they’re asking me to bring the unexpected, they’re asking me to surprise and delight clients, they’re asking me to ask questions internally about how we do things and if we can do it differently or better.”

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