Learnings from the World’s Greatest Ad man

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Author: Jamie Wilson

For the past eight weeks, I’ve been coached by Kevin Roberts.

As the former CEO & Chairman Worldwide at Saatchi & Saatchi, the author of Lovemarks – The future beyond brands and 64 Shots – Leadership in a Crazy World, you could say he is more than qualified when it comes to creativity and leadership.

I could write a novel on Kevin. He’s a straight shooter with a sharp mind and a big heart. Inspirational, transformational and a radical optimist – all traits a great leader must embody. He has reframed my perspective on creativity and leadership. In just eight weeks, he’s pushed me to think bigger, aim higher and to understand what greatness really is.

Here are the top ten learnings from my coaching (so far) that have resonated with me the most:

  1. Live by The Four Agreements – Be impeccable with your word. Don’t take anything personally. Don’t make assumptions. Always do your best.
  2. Start with Purpose – Winning starts with purpose. Purpose creates belief, belonging and direction. Purpose is built by Dream, Spirit, Beliefs, Character and Focus.
  3. Create winning behaviours – Greatness starts with superb people. Great groups and great leaders create each other with an environment that promotes responsibility, learning, recognition and joy.
  4. Invent your own language – Strong cultures have a system of meaning, a vocabulary that binds everyone together. Using a common language that employs mantras, mottos and metaphors helps leaders connect their people’s personal meaning to a shared vision of the future.
  5. Make things happen with RASCI – Responsible, Approve, Support, Consult, Inform is a project management tool that delivers non-hierarchal role clarity, removes silos, promotes accountability, fosters teamwork, enhances creativity and creates flow.
  6. Set “Just right challenges” every 100 days – A just right challenge is a stretchy but measurable goal where the complexity is just higher than your ability (challenging but achievable).
  7. Focus on Happy – Happy people achieve more. Don’t wait for happy to happen. Create three happy moments each day.
  8. Build a Survive. Revive. Thrive plan – A simple framework to manage business (and life) in today’s world.
  9. Practice Blue Ocean Thinking – Eliminate, Raise, Reduce, Create. Blue Ocean thinking focuses on the big picture, reaches beyond existing demand, reduces cost and creates value. Blue Oceans create an uncontested market space, make the competition irrelevant and create new demand.
  10. Achieve more with less – More joy, engagement, creativity, work-life integration, speed, revenue and profit. And less people time, travel, office space, certainty, face-to-face, experience, precedent.