A Chat With Our People

Hi. It’s nice to meet you. These are a few of our people.

Senior Director, Sales and Business Development

Creative Group (CG): What do you love about your role?

Craig (C): As the West Coast sales leader, I am responsible for the performance of the sales team and all business development strategy and activity on the West Coast. I love that I am challenged every day. I enjoy both the “thrill of the hunt” with new client conversations, as well as learning more from our current customers about how we can better lead, guide, and consult them in all aspects of their business. One of the best things about my role is that I get to learn from those who’ve been in the business for decades, while also adding fresh perspective on what it takes to be successful and connect with customers in the thriving and ever-changing Silicon Valley.

CG: Do you have a proud moment you can share about a time you deeply connected to a client’s business challenge and delivered the perfect solution?

C: I love when new clients come to us with a challenge they are facing or a hurdle that they think cannot be overcome. Recently, we were working with a client who felt that their agency partner couldn’t grow with them. They appreciated what that agency had done for them but needed a fresh perspective and a partner who could bring new ideas and help them scale. Our team did a lot of listening in the first few discovery calls, collaborated internally to develop a solution customized to their needs, and we were able to win their business. These are the moments that make me proud of what we do and grateful for the people that I am lucky enough to work with every day.

CG:  Is there an author or a quote you live by…either in business or your personal life – something that really resonates with you?

C: Around the office, I often remind people that “Teamwork makes the dream work”. It might sound cliché, but It’s the truth. It’s rarely about one individual performance and I find that approaching life with a sense of humbleness attracts lifelong connections, both personally and professionally. I also remind myself constantly about what Jack Welch said when it comes to leadership: “Before you are a leader, success is all about growing yourself. When you become a leader, success is all about growing others”.

Experience Design Director

CG: Hi Pete…so, Experience Design Director sounds like a fancy title. What does it mean and what do you do?

Pete (P):  Well, what’s great about my job is that it’s different every day, but at the core of my role is the idea that I champion and drive our proprietary design methodology – i|xperience. That sounded pretty serious, didn’t it? Said in plain ol’ people speak, I help create big ideas for our clients.

CG: And, what trends do you see shaping our industry?

P: The rise of the experience is everywhere. Everywhere. But let’s all try to get past the “waiting in line to get a great photo for Instagram” trend and focus on creating real experiences. The other biggie is the continued growth of “Design Thinking”. It’s the foundation for creating impactful experiences that really resonate with people. People want authenticity. It doesn’t matter whether the program is a national sales meeting, a consumer event, an incentive program, or a group travel reward. All design elements within a program should be intentional, thoughtful and connected to the larger purpose and objectives.

CG: What do you enjoy most about your role?

P:  I have always loved the challenge of the blank page. To work in collaboration with such smart people here to create a unique, ownable experience for our clients is LOTS of fun! If you’re not having a good time doing this, then it’s not going to work.

Account Manager

CG: Ozana, as a member of the customer experience team, how do you go about building partnerships with your clients?

Ozana (O): I think it all comes down to trust. That is the foundation of all good partnerships. Explaining the “how” and “why”, while consulting my client is important. Keeping my word and consistently delivering is a big part of building that trust and partnership. I often tend to use humor to connect with my clients as well; it feels natural because I love making people laugh.

CGWhat do you love most about your role as an Account Manager?

O: Problem solving and coming up with creative solutions is very rewarding and I love the challenge. But, if I had to pick just one, it would be those euphoric moments onsite that every planner has, when you see everything you have worked on for months finally come together. The thrill is also in seeing my client happy, knowing we successfully executed the event against their objectives. That elated feeling makes it all worth it!

CG:  What experiences from your past have contributed to your success at Creative Group?

O:  The culmination of my experiences has given me the confidence to know that anything is possible – and that I can always find a solution if I work hard and trust my instincts. Knowing that “impossible” is just temporary and that I can turn it around, has helped me immensely, especially on stressful days.

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