Tag Archives: Talent

Havas Lynx pushes the boundaries of creative healthcare with new recruits

Havas Lynx, the leading global healthcare communications agency, and communiqué communications consultancy of the year has further bolstered its ranks with a string of high-profile recruits including three new award-winning creative directors. This expansion of the creative team follows on from the appointment of Tom Richards as Chief Creative Officer in April 2015.

Since Richards’ appointment, the Havas Lynx group has significantly invested in its creative talent, building on their un-paralleled expertise of science, strategy and technology. In the past nine months, it’s taken on 24 new creatives, bringing Havas Lynx’s creative team to over 70 people; making it one of the biggest creative healthcare departments in Europe.

The agency has also refurbished its workplace with an enviable new creative space that has already been used by global industry association, D&AD, for its New Blood Mixer.

As part of the creative growth, Havas Lynx has appointed three seasoned Creative Directors from non-healthcare backgrounds to oversee the delivery of high-calibre campaigns and ensure Havas Lynx’s creative output sets a new standard for the industry. It welcomes Paul Kinsella, Lou Shipley and Phil Howells.

Paul Kinsella brings over 13 years’ experience from working in agencies such as Euro RSCG WNEK Gosper, Cheetham Bell JWT and BJL. He is known for ideas, insights and creativity and is excited about the opportunity to work in healthcare. In his last three years alone, his innovative designs and concepts have won over 30 awards from ceremonies including Campaign, Kinsale Sharks, Roses, DADi and Fresh. Most recently, he gained recognition for his work on Whyte & Mackay’s whisky which featured in Campaign’s top ads of 2015.

Lou Shipley brings over 19 years’ conceptual copywriting experience from several integrated advertising agencies including the likes of McCanns, Tequila TBWA, Rapier and Ogilvy. Lou’s varied portfolio includes powerful and compelling campaigns for Cancer Research UK, Save the Children and Alzheimer’s Society. Lou is known for her creative versatility having worked across TV, print, direct marketing, digital and social platforms.

The agency also welcomes Phil Howells, a multi-award winning creative director with over 30 years’ advertising experience. Phil’s portfolio includes work on a variety of campaigns for household names including Sure, Dirt Devil, Shop Direct and John Lewis, alongside working as part of the team that launched Peperami’s famous “It’s a bit of an animal”. His work has received an impressive string of industry awards such as: D&AD, Campaign Poster, Midsummer, London Interactive, Chip Shop, Montreux, The Roses and The Northern Marketing Awards.

Phil commented on his new role at Havas Lynx:
‘I’ve already been lucky enough to work with Havas Lynx on a freelance basis. I like their hunger, passion and ambition and I’m particularly impressed with the way they treat their people. Being part of Tom’s vision to raise the creative bar, not only within Havas Lynx but across the sector, has reignited my passion to do great work and also to inspire it.’

Havas Lynx’s Chief Creative Officer, Tom Richards explained:
“Healthcare may not be known as a creative industry, but we’re determined to change that. It’s great to see so many high profile and brilliant creatives recognise this and join our mission. Our new appointments are evidence of a new and radical direction for healthcare. I’m excited to produce some life changing campaigns that will be born from some of the best scientific, strategic and creative minds in the business.”

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Introducing #HavasVillageMCR

Havas Village Manchester, by David Hunt

Building the Havas brand in Manchester, and the Manchester brand across the world. 

On Tuesday 2nd November, we proudly held the exclusive launch of the UK’s first Havas Village: Havas Village Manchester. Creating a powerful creative and digital hub in our northern home, #HavasVillageMCR aligns Havas Lynx and our multi-talented network partners with a shared vision for the future.

The initiative draws together the expertise of Havas Lynx, Havas People, Havas PR, Havas Media and DBi. In the heart of our amazing city, we now have five Havas agencies and more than 300 communication experts delivering a seamless experience for our customers, and theirs.

The growth and magnitude of today’s digital channels has resulted in the dilution of the traditional boundaries between communications agencies. If we are to maximise investment and help consumers build meaningful relationships with brands, we must have a unified vision when it comes to strategy, creativity and media. As part of Havas Village Manchester, we do just this, expanding our reach and becoming stronger in our mission to make a real difference to peoples’ lives.

#HavasVillageMCR is situated within the centre of Manchester’s creative and digital community,  to leverage the exceptional talent within the city. In the past four years, Havas Lynx has doubled in size and seen some impeccable talent come in through the door, including over 75 graduates in the last three years alone, bringing their digital and social passion and fresh ideas into the mix. It’s because of this talent, and the vibrancy and power of Manchester that Havas are investing in the city. They see Manchester as it is; a key international hub.

Driven by the combined power of Havas & Manchester, #HavasVillageMCR will see the delivery of meaningful brands for today & tomorrow.

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PMGroup Communiqué Communications Consultancy of the Year

Agency of the Year, by David Hunt

The judges said, “Havas Lynx are not just preparing for the future, they are creating it.”

I agree, but not in isolation. Alongside our team, it takes great clients too. We’re incredibly blessed to work alongside some brilliant industry leaders, from all across the globe. Some have been with us since the beginning and the advent of the tablet-pc & closed-loop marketing. Others are new to the industry, but they share our vision & passion for pharma to make a meaningful & sustained impact on society. New, old, familiar, returning, former; we’re grateful to all of our clients and the role they’ve played in making us great.

We’re also very grateful to Havas Health and in particular Donna Murphy & Ed Stapor. A Global CMO of Top 10 Fortune 500 Company commented, “Your industry spends a fortune buying big digital companies, makes them worse, loses the talent, leaves them in a silo and fails to integrate them and deliver their expertise to us.” This could not be further from the reality of our transition from Creative Lynx to Havas Lynx. We’re faster, stronger, better, and significantly so. We’ve matured from a local digital shop to a global communications agency. Havas have been a catalyst for our development, ensuring that we can now boast scientific, strategic and creative excellence, alongside our unparalleled digital expertise.

From a young age, I came to understand the importance of a great team. Expertise, passion, diversity and a collective commitment are the cornerstones of our success. We mix recognised industry leaders with remarkable graduates, decorated creatives with proven engineers, and scientists with strategists. 95% of our staff are proud or very proud of the work they produce, and I am equally proud of them.

The final ingredient is the Havas Lynx Senior Team; myself, Neil Martin, Steve Nicholas, David Whittingham, and Tom Richards. With the exception of Tom, who is a recent addition, we have been together for a decade, enjoying almost all of it. It’s a great team, and one that I’m incredibly honoured to be part of. It’s reassuring to know that when times are hard, you are surrounded by experts & leaders that stand shoulder-to-shoulder. And equally, when times are good that you can celebrate with friends.Communique

Millennials, who’d have them?

Building an agency, by David Hunt

Born in 1980, I’m a borderline Millennial depending on your preferred interpretation. Regardless, I can still feel like an old man when it comes to Millennial engagement in the work place, which is why I’m so proud of our retention rate. Many agencies struggle to retain bright, ambitious talent, whereas at Havas Lynx, we prosper.

We believe Millennials want to make a difference and at Havas Lynx, we are committed to doing just that. We focus on improving patient outcomes; to drive commercial success for our partners. But our efforts don’t end with the client budget, we go much further. In 2015, we’ve already funded the education of 42 children in Africa.

We believe that Millennials want to exist within a vibrant community. #LYNXLife was launched to preserve and enhance our culture. It includes a tea lady, breakfast club and Summer Fun day offline, and Facebook and Instagram, online. To get involved, join us by following #LYNXLife.

Each year we conduct an internal survey.  Of 200+ participants 30 %  said professional development was their key priority. Many people challenge our investment in #LXAcademy accusing it of being excessive but I’d challenge us to spend more.

We try our best to shun excessive structure and hierarchy. Yes, the ultimate decision resides with the senior team but you won’t find us hiding in an office. To my knowledge, no-one at either Havas Lynx, or formerly Creative Lynx, has had their own office, and it’s my intention to maintain this record.

It’s up for debate how many of these principles are specific to Millennials and to me, it simply sounds like good business. But then again, maybe that’s just the Millennial in me.

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What makes Havas Lynx special?

The #LXAcademy, by David Hunt

“What is your point of difference?”, “Why should I work with you?”, or my personal favourite, “What makes Havas Lynx so special?” The answer is always the same – the people. But “people” does not just happen by chance. It takes investment, it takes values & it takes culture.

On the 30th of April we launched #LXAcademy 2015 at Manchester Town Hall. It was an awesome event, which reflected our commitment to, and investment in, skills development. Lucy May was inspiring as she discussed the opportunities for progressive change in healthcare with a commitment to a more holistic patient journey, fuelled by creativity. Dave Birss then followed with some phenomenal case studies that were deconstructed to their core, as we explored the discipline behind creativity. Dave beautifully illustrated the power of ideas to drive change across society. However, the greatest point of inspiration was the collective passion & expertise of the Havas Lynx community, with over two-hundred experts committed to Helpful Change in healthcare.

Over the next six months there will be over one-hundred sessions, covering Agency Fundamentals, through to Core Expertise and Thought Leadership. Not everyone in an agency has an eye for design, not everyone can use PowerPoint, and not everyone has a quality first approach – they should. The curriculum for Agency Fundamentals seeks to change this. Numerous articles and research papers discuss the most likely reason an agency would be sacked, and it’s almost always a lack of quality, attention to detail, or put another way – the fundamentals. The details count, and they are a priority for Havas Lynx.

I’d like to be a better CEO, and I’m sure that I am not alone in wanting to be better at the day job. We’ll be tackling payors and market access, content designed for a more social world, and the account teams will spend time with a restaurant manager to discuss silver service. It’s amazing the amount agencies spend on recruitment and salaries, and then neglect training and development.

The Thought Leadership programme will include discussing teamwork and marginal gains in a Formula One pit-lane, how an NHS Trust uses twitter to manage patient well-being and how the police negotiate with terrorists. All of the sessions are made available on YouTube, with last year’s #LXAcademy attracting 100,000 views, to further validate the quality.

Like all things the success of the #LXAcademy 2015 will be based on the people, the more they put in the more they will get out. As always, I’m happy backing the Havas Lynx community.

Ideas

Creativity, More Important Than Ever by David Hunt

You can have a strong brand & commitment to fulfil it. You can have the necessary culture to respond in a real fashion. You can have a relevant, quality, dynamic content strategy. And most importantly, you can share a genuine ambition with your community. But you can still, and most likely will, fail in social media.

In a world that besieges individuals with content, news & entertainment across all manner of devices & channels, standing-out from the crowd is more important than ever. Pharma has spent so long wrestling with social, that when we finally do arrive, we expect that they will come. The world has not been waiting. The world is oblivious to our fraught self-interrogation. That is not to say, we can’t add significant value to our respective communities, it is just that we need to earn the right to be socially significant. Turning-up, standing on the periphery, is not enough.

In my opinion, you need an idea that grabs attention and acts as a catalyst for your social campaign. It requires insight into the community, imagination to be unique, the potential to be valuable & engaging, but it also requires appreciation of social dynamics. It is not an advert, but it is creative. It is an idea that drives participation & interaction, from incremental approval & shares, to endorsement & actions. It takes great talent, with great ideas to unlock the great social opportunity.

In South America we have seen the Colombian League Against Cancer “Cancer Tweets” campaign demonstrating the creative opportunity social media represents.

Great ideas that leverage the social opportunity are still the exception in healthcare. I’m excited to work with clients and colleagues with the imagination and bravery to seize the initiative and make a difference.

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Content is King, so they say…

Participate in something greater, by David Hunt

“Content is King” is a great expression; catchy, weighty, easy. It’s also misleading, absent of substance, and wrong on many levels. As of January 2014, the Internet has 861,379,0001 websites, or if you prefer Google has indexed 200 Terabytes of data2 which is just 0.004% of the total Internet. Either way, there is no shortage of content. There is however an appetite for relevant, topical, bespoke content delivered as part of an expert brand strategy – the social world requires brain not brawn.

Content is a form of advertisement, albeit positioned as a more sophisticated strategy. The objective remains to elicit an emotion that drives an action. However, despite this universal truth, the world has changed. It is more connected, more social, and ultimately more judgemental. It is no longer enough to tell stories; we need to craft a collaborative narrative. Being instant lacks longevity and durability. Producing content without emotion and relevance dilutes and devalues brands. Today, more than ever, the market requires insight, imagination and innovation. Our Havas colleagues in Australia produced what I consider to be the best social campaign in healthcare: The world’s most powerful arm.

Great agencies are more, not less, critical to the brand building process. So too is a genuine brand. We can no longer manufacture our image, we can no longer limit the format of our customer interactions, we are exposed, open, and unintentionally honest. A strong authentic brand personality is essential. It must represent the values of a business and be aligned to the personality of their customers. Fonts, colours and high-gloss photographs, pale-away versus behaviour and conduct. Social success today relies more than ever on the principles of brand development.

The scale of the Internet is infinite, standing out from the crowd is harder than ever, unless of course you join the crowd. Become more than just an isolated part. Participate in something greater. Unite your community through a shared ambition. Do more. Social success is inextricably linked to the power of the collective to make a difference; it requires more than a content production line.

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  1. http://www.techmadeeasy.co.uk/2014/01/18/many-websites-january-2014/
  2. http://www.websitemagazine.com/content/blogs/posts/archive/2014/07/22/do-you-know-how-big-the-internet-really-is-infographic.aspx