Event Review: Under The Spotlight with Annabel Venner

By Nick Noble, IBM

This is what the Marketing Society does best, as a catalyst for some of the most inspiring professional conversations I’ve had. Bringing together a small group of senior marketers in a lovely environment for a few hours over dinner and drinks to hear one of our best practitioners and thinkers. The format is not new, it’s just beautifully executed and members are very familiar with it, I think it took under a minute before the chat got juicy. Having one of the members host the dinner is another great move and Fran was engaging, funny and intelligent with her questions. We’re all experienced marketers so the round table question about current challenges didn’t deliver the obvious as Chatham House rules always apply.

Annabel Venner was open and candid, describing experiences we could all relate to about operational change, period of rapid growth and KPIs. We also discussed the familiar Marketing Society subject of Bravery. When had any of us failed to stand up to a direction that we didn’t believe in. We discussed environments where that honesty just wasn’t conducive to career progression and other more enlightened places that recognised it was the best way to improve. Workplace culture and the differences between private and public sector is a critical conversation for anyone working in Scotland.

The Blythswood was lovely even though the table was a little big and the acoustics challenging or was that just me? I couldn’t have spoken to anyone on the opposite side once the conversations were in full flow.

A great, perfectly timed and inspiring evening. What’s next?