Campaign’s annual A List is considered the Who’s Who in the UK industry – and we’re delighted to see both our UK CEO, Michelle Whelan, and our UK ECD, Elspeth Lynn featured in the newly published 2020 edition.
Writes Claire Beale, Campaign’s Global Editor, on trailblazers making the list: “…If you’re in this book, then you have the potential to corral power and love, to strap them together and wield them in the name of a better industry and a better future.”
No finer accolade for the brave new Geometry. Here’s just a brief insight into our two UK leaders …
Michelle’s vitality and unflappable leadership are simply legendary.
With a 20-plus career of growing brands and businesses with transformational marketing, 2017 saw Michelle join Geometry with a two-fold ambition. To build out expertise and capability, and, drive client growth by connecting brands more closely with their consumers, across channels, where moments of commerce captivate.
Under Michelle’s leadership, Geometry has recently launched an Innovation Hub to capitalize on white space opportunities and rapidly prototype for clients, a data platform to drive deeper insights and more effective measurement and a 360-degree retail experience Flagship to experience and test new technologies. As result of this ground-breaking strategy, 2019 saw the UK land 17 new clients including briefs for innovation in the tea category, pharmacy of the future, routes to market for D2C brands and Boots' first-ever experiential-led Christmas. All in addition to expanding business from iconic clients including GSK, Kimberly-Clark, Evergreen, and Diageo.
A passionate practitioner of empowering and building successful teams, Michelle is leading industry change by creating modern working environments and, along the way, attracting new and diverse talent. Take for example, the quarterly agency Pitch Your Passion [a celebration of entrepreneurial side-hustles] where people present their side businesses such as mobile game development, bridal underwear, artisan bread baking, make-up artistry. “Incubator”, an inclusive “mini agency” work experience initiative focusing on BAME and disadvantaged young people was introduced last year.
Beyond the walls of Westbourne Terrace, Michelle coaches and mentors, and, as a member of WACL [the influential Women in Advertising and Communications London] she sits on the powerful Future Leaders Award committee. Just recently, in recognition of Geometry’s game-changing agency, ad:tech has invited Michelle to join its Advisory Council to help shape industry conversation for the future.
Last but not least, Mum to three and an active sports enthusiast, Michelle is often spotted running through London’s parks.
Elspeth’s illustrious career, spanning over 25 years of experience, includes stints as Executive Creative Director of Profero and Group Creative Director at FCB Inferno.
She stands out as being a successful, and rare, female ECD seeing a large part of her role responsible for nurturing a new generation of creative leadership from diverse and multidimensional backgrounds.
Prior to moving to London in 2008 Elspeth owned her own agency Zig with two partners and 140 people, and was awarded Agency of the Year.
Her creativity has expressed itself with clients such as UEFA, Unilever, IKEA, RBS, Boots, Virgin, M&S, Molson Coors and multiple highly successful behaviour change campaigns for Transport for London.
She also is known for starting long-running campaigns such as Labatt Blue ‘A whole lot can happen out of the Blue’ five- year radio campaign, and an IKEA campaign that’s the longest running campaign (12 years) in Canadian history.
Awarded around 130 times over the years including Cannes (most recently for UEFA in 2018), The One Show and D&AD, Elspeth has also judged just about every award show, sometimes twice. In 2019 she represented Geometry and the UK at Cannes Lions as juror of the Innovation Award, and, at Eurobest as President of the Brand Experience & Activation, and e-Commerce jury; and, President of the Glass jury.
Though Elspeth has above the line, below the line and through the line experience, her focus is now about creativity that converts.
She is truly passionate about creating experiential work such as the ‘Mini World Record’ which won Grand Prix at the BIMAs, and the recent shoppable Bootiques for Boots.
Elspeth spends her free hours creating residential and commercial spaces, including the recently renovated 25,000 sq ft Geometry London space which was shortlisted at the British Council for Offices awards, and a residence featured in Architectural Digest.