April 27, 2012

“Marketing is dead” says Saatchi & Saatchi CEO


Addressing an audience of senior business leaders, Kevin Roberts, CEO of Saatchi & Saatchi Worldwide, claimed that in today’s crazy world strategy is dead, the big idea is dead, management is dead and marketing, as we know, is also dead.

During his colourful presentation, which followed on from a speech from Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, Roberts said: “I am a radical optimist, I don’t buy into all this recession talk. I do not think we are in a recessionary environment, but we do have too many recessionary leaders. To win today we all need to power things up and speed things up.

“We don’t just live in a VUCA world - a volatile, uncertain, ambiguous and complex world - we live in a super VUCA world. We live in a vibrant world where our kids are connecting to each other and to brands across the world with no money involved. To us this is a world that’s gone crazy.

“Strategy is dead. Who really knows that is going to happen anymore in this super VUCA world? The more time and money you spend devising strategies the more time you are giving you rivals to start eating your lunch.

“Management is dead. To win today you need a culture and an environment where the unreasonable power of creativity thrives. Ideas are today’s currency not strategy. Martin Luther King did not say ‘I have a vision statement’ did he? He had a dream. You have to make sure you have dreams and your brand also needs a dream.”

He went on to outline how successful business leaders need to harness creative thing in the future, saying: “Business leaders need to become creative leaders. We need to change the language of business. Who wants to be a Chief Executive Officer? It sounds like you work for the government and who would want that? Being a Chief Excitement Officer would be better, don’t you think? The role of a good CEO is to get people to buy into their dreams and their company’s dreams.”

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