It would be hard to find another person in the media industry that is as universally liked and respected than Gordon Patterson, business director of Omnicom.
He is an icon of the media industry and was been singled out for the Shepherd Award at the MOST Awards 2015. This award, which was first introduced at last year’s MOST Awards, is given to an individual who has made a selfless contribution to the media industry.
Patterson is recognised in the industry as a creative and strategic thinker. He began his career in the early 1980’s before joining Young and Rubicam as a media strategist. He then worked for Leo Burnett where he became a media director before he launched Starcom in 2000. The Starcom Mediavest Group that evolved from this, grew exponentially to the point where it had an annual turnover of R1.8bn and had established affiliates in 29 countries. Patterson became business director of Omnicom in 2014.
In addition to his stellar career, Patterson lectures in media schools, serves on industry committees, and has judged many awards.
He believes if you want to get a job done, “give it to a busy person” and believes in delegating and training staff well. “Work hard, have fun and enjoy life. It’s not a secret!” he says.
Josh Dovey, CEO of Omnicom says Patterson’s undiminished passion for the media business and specifically the advertising industry is key. “Gordon’s an asset – he has the knowledge of being part of the global network. Around the office he’s an inspiring character. Staff and young people relate to him. Approachable and humble, he is a great manager, leader and client interface person – they respect what he says because they know that he understands the market.”
“He cares about research institutes, the lifeblood of the industry. His massive contribution to innovation at the Audit Bureau of Circulation (ABC) has had a significant and positive impact on print media planning in South Africa,” Dovey said.
Last month Patterson was elected President of the ABC. GM Charles Beiles adds to Dovey’s praise of Patterson, “He’s a person of integrity and stands up for what he believes”.
Patterson has a wide range of hobbies and interests. He is a diving instructor, underwater photographer, keen nature lover and has a wolf, whom he describes at loyal and affectionate.
The Shepherd Award is Wag the Dog Publisher’s way of acknowledging an individual who has contributed a great deal for little reward.
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