One Year Later, Reflections ...



It has been one year and six days since our 30-year anniversary party. Thinking about the cliché that goes something along the lines, “It’s all about the people.”

It is all about the people.

Reconnecting with employees from the early days. Reconnecting with clients going back to 1987. And reconnecting with others who have intersected with the Agency’s adventure. Journey doesn’t quite capture it.

At the risk of going Zen on you, I believe that the Agency’s makeup today is an amalgamation of every person who has walked through our doors and every happenstance, even the bad stuff.

With this as a backdrop, I decided to republish the post on the wife as a prelude to the anniversary party.

(Original post date: September 13, 2017)

We will celebrate the Agency’s 30-year anniversary tomorrow.

Alumni are flying in from New York and Tokyo and places in between. The two clients who generated that thing called revenue when we opened our doors in 1987 will be there. Current staff are ready to get this party started.

We’ll see so many people who cared and contributed to the Agency over the years.

But this post zeroes in one individual — my wife Heather. The Agency wouldn’t be the place it is today without her.

When people ask her if she works at the Agency, she answers no. It’s true, she’s not an employee by the traditional definition of the word. Yet I would contend she’s been working at the Agency for 30 years, always finding ways to sprinkle her pixie dust that adds a special dimension to our world.

I suppose there’s a reason “two heads are better than one” became a cliché. Her perspectives from a non-communications lens are of incredible valuable even if the husband in me sometimes requires time for the input to sink in. After 30 years, she knows the business of communications better than a WPP suit with an abacus.

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention her words of encouragement during the tough days. Thinking out loud, 260 work days in a year x 30 years means 7,800 days. If we figure 10 percent of those days qualify as “tough” — probably a conservative estimate for the communications industry where a debate over innovate vs. invent can derail a day — that’s a substantial amount of encouragement earmarked for 780 days.

Back to the pixie dust that takes varied forms —

How many wives would crack open their sander and finish off the walls of the new office, redirecting  build-out dollars for furniture.



I call the photo above, “Breaking Bad Meets the Wife.”

Heather has also hosted countless dinners at our home, this one transforming our living room into a dinner party for 15 that included folks from Singapore, Hong Kong, China and Japan.



An artist, she worked with a sculptor to interpret our logo as a piece of artwork that graces the lobby of our San Jose office.



As a closet introvert, I find that the personal touch doesn’t come naturally for me. Enter Heather, who often plays tourist guide for overseas visitors, in this case taking Vylvianne Devajothi from our Singapore office to Half Moon Bay.



I could go on and on. The Chinese philosophy of yin and yang explains how opposites in combination end up complementary in manner resulting in a greater whole. That’s how I see us.

And the Agency is a better place because of her.

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