We announced today that Syreeta Mussante will take on the role of North America managing director (standardizing our titles for geo heads across the globe) joining us after five years at the Bateman Group.
She follows in the footsteps of Steve Burkhart who is retiring from day-to-day consultancy life.
Rather than pull out the typical verbs — thrilled, delighted, pleased, excited and the list goes on — I’d like to touch on how this strengthens us as organization and how we serve clients.
First, it’s important to recognize that different times call for different measures. When Steve Burkhart took the reins of our NA operation in 2012, we were … how can I put this delicately? … a mess. He retooled the U.S. operation and attracted an A+ management team consisting of Kymra Knuth and Steve Jursa, later expanding to include Mike Sottak, Kali Myrick, Kelly Stone and Pouneh Lechner.
The mission remained the same, a maniacal focus on the client and service delivery. The egalitarian culture that emphasizes teamwork remained in place. But Steve and his team established accountability to frame our core values, the foundation that put us back on a growth path.
Fast forwarding to today, our needs have changed.
More than step on the gas, we now need an individual who’s going to stomp on the gas. One of Bateman’s founders, Bill Bourdon, had this to say about Syreeta:
“… her impact on our business, brand and culture was profound. When she joined us, we were a small team of approximately 15 people. Thanks in part to her pedigree, natural leadership abilities, counter-intuitive creativity, deep roots in enterprise technology and new business rainmaking, we’ve grown into one of the top communications agencies for the technology industry known for our strategic approach to storytelling and distinct workplace culture. None of this would have been possible without Syreeta’s many contributions.”
The business world loves to borrow the line from the Hall-of-Fame hockey player Wayne Gretzky: “Skate to where the puck is going, not where it has been.”
But what if you don’t know where the puck is going? Can anyone really predict what the communications business will look like five years from now? Syreeta’s comfort with ambiguity and “figuring things out” will serve the Agency well in the coming years.
One final comment on the big picture —
We’re proud of the progress we’ve made on the diversity front. With Syreeta now heading our NA operation, two of our three geographies are led by women, and 10 of our 18 global leaders (VP, EVP, GM or MD) are women.
The official news release on Syreeta follows:
The Hoffman Agency Names Syreeta Mussante North America Managing Director
SAN JOSE, Calif., August 21, 2019 — The Hoffman Agency, a global communications consultancy, today announced that Syreeta Mussante has taken the role of North America managing director effective September 4.
Mussante arrives at the Agency after five years at the Bateman Group where she was executive vice president.
“It’s rare to find an individual who is a rainmaker and also deeply cares about the service delivery for existing clients,” said Lou Hoffman, CEO of The Hoffman Agency. “Syreeta brings both of these qualities to the Agency.”
“Plus, you can’t teach someone to command a room.”
Defining communications broadly to include digital, content marketing, thought leadership as well as traditional PR, The Hoffman Agency expects 21% growth this year with global revenues hitting $16.6M.
“In our increasingly global business climate, the ability to provide truly integrated communications across geographies is a differentiator,” said Mussante. “The Hoffman Agency is uniquely positioned to be the smart, strategic partner that executives need to grow their business in the U.S. and around the world. The opportunity to lead this world-class team at this pivotal moment is too exciting to resist.”
One of the few independent PR consultancies with global reach, The Hoffman Agency comprises 13 offices across the globe, including San Jose, California, and Vancouver, Washington (outside of Portland), in the U.S. as well as Beijing, Berlin, Jakarta, Hong Kong, London, Paris, Seoul, Shanghai, Singapore, Taipei and Tokyo.
About the Hoffman Agency
The Hoffman Agency (www.hoffman.com) specializes in markets of complexity. The firm brings the best of both worlds to its clients — the high touch of a boutique, with the sophistication in services associated with the mega shops. While campaigns vary by client and industry, all share one theme: the creation of content that reflects the tenets of storytelling and what the firm terms storytelling techniques.