“The team is everything, and everything is the team”

Ali Rez, chief creative officer at Impact BBDO, picked up creative leader of the year award at Campaign's Agency of The Year

We caught up with Ali Rez, chief creative officer at Impact BBDO, after he picked up the award for Creative Leader of the Year at Campaign’s Agency of The Year Middle East awards.

Here’s what he had to say to Campaign Middle East editor Justin Harper:

Tell us why you think you won the award?

Firstly, a big thank you to the jury members. It’s really a huge honour to win such a special accolade: that was an incredible shortlist and much respect to all on it. I won this simply because I have the good fortune to work with the craziest creative team in the region, all of whom believe in creating the finest work in the world – this includes the hugely supportive and inspiring leadership.

How will the award help you/your agency?

All awards and award shows help agencies and brands know that they are doing the right kind of work, that they are on the right path, that they are setting the right standards. It’s validation for the one big thing that partners come to agencies for: thinking. For me personally, an award such as this is indicative of the fact that the work my team is putting out there is working and that it is driving the industry forward. Knowing that, gives everybody on the team a sense of achievement and a fulfillment of purpose: without both, how else would we create brilliant work?

What makes these awards unique?

What is truly special about the Campaign AOY Awards is that they are more holistic in their approach. You don’t just win for the work, you win for the kind of place you are, for how you support everybody in that workplace, for how you contribute to the industry, how much you value diversity and sustainability, how well the business has done, and then of course, how good the quality of the work is. It’s not just one thing you have to get right, it’s everything.

How are clients’ demands changing?

Brand partners are looking for more than just a comms service agency, they are looking for true business partners that take the thinking beyond just communications and into business ideas that drive commerce. They are looking for big thinking that helps them stand apart from everybody else, intelligent thinking that is both strategic and creative at its heart.

How important is your team?

The team is everything, and everything is the team. None of this would be possible without the team. One of the most magical things about BBDO is also one of the most important ones for the team: the incredibly collaborative structure without any ego walls or politics. Ideas rule, no matter where they come from, and the team thrives on the flow of big thinking.