Gerry Boyle
Oct 10, 2018

Publicis’s Asian future

Exposure to Asia has a lifelong impact. As our industry wrestles with issues of diversity, why not learn from diversity itself?

Gerry Boyle is CEO for APAC and EMEA at Publicis Media.
Gerry Boyle is CEO for APAC and EMEA at Publicis Media.

We asked four APAC-based agency-network heads to comment for our special 50th anniversary issue. See Agency voices: Regional leaders look forward.

As we congratulate Campaign on celebrating 50 years, I’ve completed just five in this amazing region. With very mixed emotions, the Boyle family has recently relocated to London. In a region that is renowned for stories of growth, I’d like to add one more to the library – a story of both professional and personal growth for us.

It has been a privilege to live, travel and work in this most diverse of regions. I’ve watched my children grow up in an environment where anything is possible, where diversity is everyday life and where the environment encourages, even demands, openness to new people, new thinking and new ideas regardless of whether the roots lie in demography, ideology, culture, creed or colour. They are thankfully blind to any such form of classification and we have all developed a more natural openness to all aspects of life. I hope and believe this will stay with us forever. We are all the better for it. Thank you.

I have loved the general positivity we have experienced while in Asia. The welcome response to any suggestion whether related to an idea or an action. The commitment to embrace ideas and bring them to life. To make things happen. In a region where growth and speed are the norm, there is an uninhibited spirit to try. And to try again. There’s no room for cynicism here, where it might impede speed and growth. 

Our ‘Asian Nomads’ study in 2017 highlighted the massive growth in general Asian travel, but it’s also true of the workforce in our business. I would take a safe bet that we have more Media Nomads across the holding companies here than anywhere else in the world. This is despite the cultural and language differences that exist across ‘the region’ and is yet another symbol of the openness and exploratory spirit that exists. Such mobility creates inclusive (and intensive) work cultures, innovative idea exchanges, and more diverse teams can mean better work for brands.

Based on my family’s five years, I believe we should encourage as many of our talents from around the world to spend as much time as possible in this amazing place. Whether two weeks on an exchange programme, a month-long pitch experience or a longer relocation, exposure to Asia will have a lifelong impact. 

As our industry wrestles with issues of diversity, why not learn from diversity itself? Life lessons in openness, growth, positivity, innovation and speed are learned here daily. We might, as an industry, all be better for it.

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