Sustained Success, The Mark of a Great Team?

Awards; Behind the scenes of 23 wins in 5 years, by David Hunt

It was September 2009 and we were travelling to the inaugural PM Digital Awards. As is customary, we were debating the merits of our finalists, I’m our toughest critic and had predicted 1 or maybe 2 – we won 6, including both best in show!! Travelling home today, with 23 wins in 5 years I could not be more proud of the whole team & more grateful to our client partners.

I’ve grown up playing football and people talk about the difference between a great year and a great team. To win a title is a great year, to win the title year-after-year is the mark of a great team. In football this sustained success often includes the need to re-invent & evolve the team. As an agency we have done the same. We invest heavily in research & development, we embrace new technologies, and we recruit the brightest digital talent. We don’t stand still, and as a result neither do our clients.

How have we maintained our position as leading innovators in healthcare communications? We have great clients, who share our ambition to innovate. We have great expertise, within a culture of innovation. We have a great philosophy, focused on improving health outcomes.

Our clients don’t have to be digital experts, they do have to be courageous. Based on robust insight, a solid understanding of the regulations and digital technologies, we will make recommendations. But we can only be successful through a strong partnership with our clients. We are at our best, our strongest and our most innovative when working as a team.

We have almost 200 people in Europe, over 250 including LYNX NY, all focused on healthcare. Can you have scale & innovation? Yes, we are talking thousands & not hundreds when this could become an issue. Can you be small & innovative today? Not sure, the number of technologies & platforms is increasing at an unbelievable rate. As an individual you simply cannot be a master of them all, as a result, how can a small agency develop a campaign defined by the brief rather than by their in-house expertise, if it is limited in it’s very nature?

I often talk about a vibrant Manchester digital community, and it’s importance to our success. It also comes with challenges. The most significant of which is talent recruitment. On the surface we are competing with agencies offering websites for Nike, Audi & Virgin, and pharma is just not that cool. However, pharma makes a difference. We work on amazing treatments from HIV to Oncology & Diabetes that transform lives. As an agency, we are united by a common philosophy – Helpful Change. Inspiring us to be better & attract the talent necessary to fulfil that vision.

On the eve of the inaugural PM Digital Awards in 2009, if we would have debated the number of wins over the first 5 years… it certainly would not have been 23, and a period of such sustained success. And for that I am extremely grateful to both our bold clients and exceptional team.

You can watch a short video montage of the HAVAS LYNX 2013 PM Digital Media award finalist entries here: http://www.havaslynx.com/work/video-archive/

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