Manchester AGM 6-9 June 2024

“This is Manchester. We do things differently.”

This is how BDB CEO Matt Smith began his welcome presentation on Friday evening when delegates gathered at BDB’s offices. Over the next few days, we understood what he meant.  

The programme included a tour of Manchester key sights – even including a photo-opportunity at the Manchester United FC ground, Old Trafford. But it was the event itself that will stick most in the memory. 

Creativity, change and agency culture

The annual E3 awards event was completely re-formatted, with award entries hanging in Manchester Art Gallery alongside leading works of art. Find out how your agency got on here.

The programme itself focused on agency culture. We all understand how marketing agencies work – and we understand the importance of creating a culture that makes great work possible. A number of superb guest speakers joined over thirty delegates for a two-day programme that took in psychology, inclusivity and retention, along with many other topics in between:



Guest speaker: Calum Arthur

Calum applies his extensive knowledge of psychology to leadership in business and how to build a winning leadership team. For a taste of his work, check out his leadership model developed for the British Military (not classified, we promise) and a fascinating piece on how football managers like Jurgen Klopp and Jose Mourinho need charisma off the pitch to create success on it…

Guest speaker: Vimla Appadoo

Vimla calls herself “a design leader, international speaker and advocate for changing the way businesses think, using Culture, Design and Technology to align profit and purpose”. That’s probably only part of what she can do, given the impact of her talk on Revolutionising Command: Dismantling traditional power structures in agency cultures. A breath of fresh air – find out more here.


Guest speaker: Sunil Jindal

To Sunil, DEI (Diversity, Equity and Inclusivity) is not a nice to have but a clear competitive advantage. In his day job, he talks to top-level execs about why DEI matters to organisations as a driver for growth and innovation, focusing on the corporate market and investors. In Manchester, his session called “DEI Disruption: The jewel in your and your clients crown” helped E3 members to take a fresh look at this key part of agency culture.  

Thanks also to other speakers, including the panel of Léon Milns, Claire Smith, and Derek Bishop in the Q&A session on talent retention: “The Alchemy Behind Attracting & Retaining Top Talent”

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