Group Think 2022

Elephants take on the Group Think Festival 2022

We had to make it a hat-trick!

For the third year running, we take on Group Think Festival…

Another year, another Group Think Festival! A day full of inspiring and motivating talks for big thinkers. A bit of background about this festival: a team of communications, brand and design strategists who wanted to build a community for like-minded strategists founded Group Think. They run regular meet-ups, and inspiring talks…and the team at Elephants are proud to be members of the Group Think community!

This year is the third year in a row that the team have attended. Since Group Think always leaves us feeling incredibly inspired, we just had to re-join this community of other big thinkers. 

Here are some soundbites from the day which made us think differently…

Open doors…and close them again

Andrew Gibson, CSO of Creature London, made us think of brand strategy as you would opening doors. He inspired us to question our role as strategists by suggesting that strategy is more about a moment of thinking than a moment of genius. Opening every door can strengthen your thinking and help you support your choice with complete confidence. As you’ve considered all the other options and have the information to explain why they won’t work, your selected choice has more strength!

Open every door and pick the best option!
Move from ego to insight

Head of Experience Design at Matter of Form Nick Payne-Cook urged that design strategy nowadays should not focus so much on what people want, but more on what the planet needs. In a world of Amazon Prime and fast fashion, he posited that brands should focus their design strategies on sustainable measures that will benefit future generations. By moving ‘from ego to insight,’ we move from customer convenience to a purposeful impact at a societal level. A thought-provoking perspective!

Battle Imposter Syndrome and REST!

We know many strategists deal with imposter syndrome daily, so it was no surprise that this question came up when the Q&A session was opened to the floor. Nicoletta Vita, Head of Planning at VCCP, recommended that you build momentum by getting your thoughts down on a page quickly and avoid the feeling of constantly having to be a perfectionist all the time…great advice!

Imposter syndrome aside, we were reminded that rest is just as productive as work. Anna Vogt, CSO of VMLY&R, explained that it is during our rest phase that our brains can organise and settle thoughts and strategies that were being developed during the day. So you must allow it time to do that!

Punchlines and PowerPoint

Comedian and Strategist, Heleana Blackwell, spoke about the similarities between jokes and insights. Heleana explained that the punchline in comedy is the human truth in strategy. In other words, the ‘ah’ moment in strategy is the ‘haha’ moment in comedy…we love this thought!

And finally… David Stevens, Executive Strategy Director from Wolff Olins reminded us that an insane amount of things we learn about is more PowerPoint and a lot of persuasion happens via PowerPoint. An interesting (sort of sad?!) thought.

Final thoughts…

Here at Elephants, we believe that a great strategist is one who is intelligently curious, insight-driven and a brilliant simplifier! In today’s world, it is us strategists who will drive how consumers perceive the world through brands and activations – and we must remember this in the work that we do everyday.

“Insight is the oxygen to all great strategy.”

 – Amy Watt, Chief Strategy Officer at Dentsu X

We loved this quote from Amy Watt and found it even applied to our day spent with Group Think! With such great insights, we were left feeling thoroughly inspired by such interesting and mind-broadening concepts from the day. Thank you for the oxygen Group Think!

Roll on Group Think Festival 2023! 

Read our Group Think Festival 2021 blog here

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