PETALING JAYA: Being bullish about a new venture amidst a pandemic or an economic downturn is never easy, yet it is rewarding, said ad and media veteran Andreas M. Vogiatzakis.
His inspiration to proceed with a new start-up despite the lingering Covid-19 which has caused some businesses to collapse and others to pause their operations, was none other than legendary American ad executive Leo Burnett. The latter founded Leo Burnett Company Inc in 1935 and is one of the leading global ad agencies.
“When Leo Burnett started his agency in the midst of the Great Depression, he said that when you reach for the stars you may not quite get one, but you won’t come up with a handful of mud either. The rest was history.
“So I decided to start a small and medium enterprise (SME) outfit – AMVPLUS Advisory – during these tough times as I feel the services which it renders are timely in the wake of the pandemic. It will help businesses to create purpose and have better teams in preparation for the upturn in businesses post pandemic.
“During these trying times, coaching, training, and advisory can also be more critical than ever before, as they lead to better leadership, transformation etc, ” he added.
Vogiatzakis acknowledged there would be challenges amid the pandemic but those who persevered during this period would emerge as winners.
While there is no magic to success, nor a recipe off the shelf, he said one common ingredient to any successful business is value creation, meaningfulness and purpose.
He said AMVPLUS fits the bill as it has a purpose to be a catalyst for positive change and helps clients overcome their challenges and spur their businesses. AMVPLUS was founded by Vogiatzakis and several partners in August.
Vogiatzakis noted: “While technology changes our world constantly, and demands a higher knowledge of technical skills, we need to focus on learning, unlearning and relearning, in order to stay relevant. In that journey, we need to focus on developing our attitude and power skills, ” he said.
“It is critical to realise that while we will live in a technologically advanced world that is fully connected and enabled, the human touch, attention, and attitude would always be the most critical areas to develop.
“In fact, attitude would become even more important. And the so-called ‘soft skills’, which I prefer to call power skills, will become even more important and critical. Power skills will determine attitude, which will connect knowledge and skill, and make the winning recipe for any individual.”
He believes the most critical of all skills is one’s attitude. Attitude refers to the positive, collaborative and open behaviour that facilitates teamwork, creativity and collaboration that leads to success.
“In my extensive working tenure in Malaysia and abroad, it is not the technical skills and knowledge that carry people forward, but their attitude.
“I have seen people with the highest calibre of knowledge and technical skills being fired, and others who are willing to learn and adopt the right attitude have advanced and progress in their career path, ” he said.
Vogiatzakis, among others, has built and managed several media agencies for Publicis, Omnicom, WPP and Havas, leading them to flagship positions in their respective markets.
Since 1997 in Asia, he has successfully navigated companies through two recessions, a global monetary crisis and two global pandemics.
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