Mike Falconer was recently placed by Adam into a brand-new role at Summit Media, an agency with 150 employees working with online retailers, helping them to make more money retailing online through digital technology. Summit Media have become world-leaders in retailing innovation; across strategy, insight, marketing, commerce, trading and logistics. As Chief Client Officer, Mike assumes the most senior client position in the business and will be focussed on managing and developing the Summit Media’s client portfolio as well involvement in other areas of the business and wider group.
We caught up with Mike to find out his career to date and here about his experience of working with Adam as a candidate.
Over 20 Years of Driving Agency Growth
Mike Falconer has had a glittering career in the agency scene, working in C Suite roles in a variety of businesses in a career that has spanned over 20 years.
“I started my career in traditional advertising at TBWA”, said Mike. “I was Managing Partner there for 7 years and then moved to set up a new business within TBWA (Stream) which was a Content Marketing business, responding to the changes in advertising happening at that time. I then left to start my own technology business, Betterlogic, before returning to the agency scene, taking a role as Client Services Director at Sapient, a leading global marketing, digital & technology services agency.”
Mike was Searching for a Role Where Marketing and Technology Converge
Mike was on the lookout for a new challenge and had a clear brief on what he was looking for.
“I was first exposed to Adam at a previous role. We had a candidate who had been introduced by Leon Milns(Adam Founder and Director). The team at Adam had placed a couple of people into that agency and they had a good relationship with the head of HR there. It was due to this experience that I decided to approach Leon about helping me with the next stage in my career.
Because my agency experience is diverse, it gave me a variety of options in what I could consider. Although the agency businesses I have worked in have been very different from each other, many of the principles are the same. However, what I was really looking for was a role within a business that is centred around where marketing and technology converge. I think it’s an interesting space and that’s where I’ve spent much of my career.”
We Searched For Roles that Fit Mike’s Brief
The ‘getting to know you’ stage is crucial to our approach here at Adam. We spend a lot of time getting to know both our candidates and clients, finding out what makes them tick, their background, vision, values, culture and ambitions. This process helps us to match candidates with businesses that truly fit with their career aspirations and culture, where they can make a real difference, and take their careers to the next level.
Mike explains, “The first stage of the recruitment process was a discovery session with Leon, during which we spent a couple of hours discussing life and the universe, and where I was up to in my career. I explained how I wasn’t particularly happy in my current role and it wasn’t what I expected it to be, so we sat down and talked about what good might look like from my point of view.”
We then went to work, finding businesses in our network of agency clients that fit his criteria of “where marketing and technology converge.” We quickly identified a senior role at an agency in Manchester, which was an interesting prospect for Mike, giving him the opportunity to return home to the North West after many years in London.
Mike explained. “Almost immediately after our initial meeting Leon was proactive in terms of finding me opportunities. He very quickly put a role in front of me that fit my criteria and checked in regularly to ensure everything was running smoothly. What I really liked about the approach was the rhythm of the communication was so consistent. You’re never curious about what is going on behind the scenes as you are always kept updated. I probably had a call almost every day from either Leon or Rochelle Vyas, even if it was only for a couple of minutes, which was really reassuring. From a candidate perspective, it’s crucial to know what’s going on and have the chance to ask questions.The opportunity in Manchester didn’t materialise unfortunately, but it was an interesting journey nonetheless. The whole process was perfectly handled by Adam and in retrospect it was a good outcome. It was perfectly amicable but we decided to park it.”
Keeping Up the Momentum
“I’ve seen it before where as soon as a job goes cold the recruiter just disappears and you don’t see them for dust. They’ve moved on to the next opportunity. However, Leon was straight on the phone with other opportunities which including the role at Summit.
Summit were a perfect fit with what I was looking for so I was naturally excited. They are a progressive, digital first business, doing some very cool and interesting stuff. They have a good client base and fantastic intellectual property.
Leon fully briefed me on the Summit opportunity and once I showed my interest he was back in touch within a couple of days with an update. It was the same pattern as before, super quick and efficient. The first meeting was booked quickly, followed by four more face to face interviews in the process. Leon and Rochelle really kept the pace up. No one wanted to drag it out but obviously there were steps we had to go through. I had three sessions with Summit’s CEO and my colleagues which was great from my point of view as I got a chance to meet the people I would be working with in the business. This was obviously beneficial from their point of view as well, to find out more about me.”
“The whole process only took five weeks from start to finish.”
Leon and Rochelle the worked tirelessly to ensure the recruitment process was seamless, regularly checking in with both Mike and the Senior Management Team at Summit Media to keep momentum going. Mike was made an offer, he worked with them to pin down his role and responsibilities.
“The whole process only took five weeks from start to finish. To put that into context, it took seven months to get my previous role! A lot of that momentum was down to Leon driving it.The team at Summit and I talked around what the title should be and decided on Chief Client Officer as that’s what we wanted to signal to the market, but there will be opportunity to get involved in other areas of the Summit Media business, and the wider group in the medium term. It’s the most senior client services position in the business and the role is focussed largely on managing and developing their current client portfolio. It’s an area that I have had a lot of experience in during my career having played similar roles in a range of diverse agencies. Although the Chief Client Officer role has a client orientation, I will be one of only four people on the management team. There is a Chief Operating Officer element to it as well as the chance for a wider influence on client management.”
“You just don’t get that with OTHER recruiters, they don’t invest time in candidates.”
“Leon’s got great energy. He’s very proactive and should take a lot of credit for the speed in which I was placed at Summit Media. Throughout the process I’ve spoken to him every day for five weeks. That level of interaction is unheard of! You just don’t get that with OTHER recruiters, they don’t invest that time in candidates. He didn’t have to call every day and check in with me, he went out of his way to give a fantastic client experience.Adam are true to their values. It’s the best process I have ever been through from a candidate point of view. No one’s given me that level of interaction, guidance and dialogue. I think Leon and Rochelle have played a blinder. That’s just how the team at Adam work. The culture that Leon has built into the business makes Adam so effective. I’m sure they do the same from a client perspective too.
I will be looking to use Adam from a client perspective, to help me build out my team when there is an opportunity and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them. I have complete confidence in Adam and would happily use them in the future.”