I got into the event industry because… I love creating experiences. What excited me the most is being in the privileged position of creating memories which people carry with them. My passion for creating experiences really began when I was young. I was fortunate to spend a lot of my time working on film sets – from running to set production and sound design. The thrill and buzz of working with a crew was infectious and has definitely influenced the way I work today.
I have worked here since… September 2002. I had spent a period of around four years working at Nielsen where I learned a lot about what brands are looking to achieve and worked primarily on Coca-Cola and Reckitt Benckiser’s global account. While this was an incredibly significant period in my own personal development I had a burning desire to move back into a creative role – and that’s when I jumped ship and set up Ambient.
I was attracted to this particular role because... I saw that there had not been an awful lot of innovation in the UK at that moment in time. In other markets I had noticed a trend towards less traditional means of engaging an audience. On a trip back home to Sydney I was inspired by a guerrilla marketing campaign and that was it. I got back to the UK and got cracking.
Not many people know that… I studied music at uni and did a Masters in Film Music Composition and love the work of Ennio Morricone. In terms of pulling an audience into a story music and sound design plays a crucial role and I always feel as though my background fits nicely within the skills required in the industry.
The best event I’ve been involved was... a product launch roadshow we activated for Clinique’s DDML+. We created a theatrical performance as the centre piece of an engaging sampling campaign. The flash mob style of the show had a massive impact and when you see thousands of people stopping and enjoying what you’ve been part of creating was incredibly satisfying.
If I could do it all over again I would… get started sooner. I think when I was younger I was a little too cautious and the move from a stable job with all its trimmings to going out there and starting a business with virtually nothing is a daunting prospect, so looking back I'd like to have had the confidence to be a little bolder.
The one thing I can’t stand is... dishonesty. We’ve built our agency on a few core values and ‘open and honest relationships’ is one of them. It’s the foundation for any solid working relationship and the opposite is intolerable.
Outside of work I spend my time... with my family. I have two young boys and an amazing wife. They keep me grounded and remind me not to "sweat the small stuff".
If money were no object I would… make a movie.
If I could switch places with anyone else in the industry it would be... an interesting experiment. I’ve been incredibly fortunate to have been able to follow the path I have and wouldn’t want it to be any other way. But, if pushed I think I’d like to switch places (temporarily) with a creative producer. For me it’s where a lot of the magic happens and definitely one of the more satisfying roles within the industry which I like to keep in close touch with.
If I ruled the event industry I would… reduce the amount of waste. It seems that there are so many occasions whereby assets are not able to be re-purposed or recycled. I would endeavour to find a way to improve this.
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