Leadership Council Spotlight: Q&A with Drew Shaman & Brock Campbell
No matter the industry you’re in or the type of organization you’re working for, continuous learning and training opportunities should always be prioritized—when they are, businesses benefit, individuals grow, and connections are made.
MAGNET’s Leadership Council was formed with this in mind. The council creates thought partnerships for some of the network’s most senior and tenured talent, who are tasked with not only driving their businesses forward in partnership with their CEOs and Principals but also effectively managing teams day-in and day-out and providing innovative solutions and strategic recommendations for their clients. This is a tall order, but by collaborating with other leaders who are striving to achieve similar goals, everyone gains a deeper understanding of how to more confidently navigate the agency world. With input and insights from leaders, the council then develops resources, programs, and other services that address agency pain points and gaps and enable opportunities that the entire network can benefit from.
Two members of the Leadership Council, Drew Shaman from Schermer and Brock Campbell from Littlefield Agency, recently proposed and then led a new series for the entire MAGNET network focused on presentation training and best practices, called “Advanced Presentation Salon Series.”
Let’s dive in and learn why the series was proposed, how it came together, and what benefits have stemmed from it so far.
Why was the Advanced Presentation Salon Series proposed?
Shaman: Revisiting best practices as it relates to presentation skills is always a good idea—but as most people have settled into remote and/or hybrid working, it felt even more important to provide a refreshed course that accounted for presenting in virtual environments as well. We knew this would resonate with leaders and the network at-large and would be something that everyone could operationalize quickly. We assessed a few different partners who provided this type of training, and moved forward with the Throughline Group, who focused not just on the structure of the presentation itself but how people present both in-person and through video conferencing.
Campbell: It was also important that this training cover more than the basics of “presentation skills.” Presentations are as much about how you are as they are what you say, so our training partner needed to value and cover the importance of a presenter’s presence, which is exactly what Throughline Group did. They reiterated that presentation skills are more than having a good slideshow and the right talking points but also about (stage) presence.
Tell us about the planning process for this series.
Shaman: After we decided to move forward with Throughline Group, we then cast a call out across the network for submissions and presentations that were currently being used so that Throughline had a good understanding of the agency world and the types of information commonly presented. They then took those examples, combining them with an understanding of who MAGNET was and the types of clients that we all typically partner with, to tailor the training and ensure it was applicable to our daily lives.
Campbell: Presentation skills workshops can be really ordinary. Our Throughline partner cut through the ordinary and was able to convey skills in a way that was more unique and applicable to our industry, and they also shared our point-of-view that presenting is a performance. This upfront coordination and collaboration ultimately led to a meaningful series of workshops.
Who participated in the series?
Shaman: We had senior leaders from EMEA, APAC, and the Americas participate. The approach and curriculum transcended regions.
Campbell: At Littlefield Agency specifically, we had all client-facing staff participate in the training. In our case, that was the majority of our staff. Our people were able to think critically about what and how we present, and it’s already led to some improvements in our approach.
Any key takeaways that stood out from the series?
Campbell: Our agency team members who attended the training regrouped afterwards and shared takeaways and applications. It was a productive debrief that has led to some improvements. What’s more, I personally enjoyed the workshop. Some points were good reminders, and some points have challenged me/us to change the way we think about and deliver presentations. As an agency, it’s great to offer this type of training to our employees. It’s a win-win in that employees are able to grow their own skills, which then provide even more value to our agency and clients.
Shaman: We had a large number of participants attend as well from Schermer. As a follow-up, we're applying the learnings immediately to our new business capabilities presentations, while also working on a way to share learnings with coworkers who weren't able to join and for future new hires. We found it tremendously helpful to receive reminders about your posture, the energy that you share, how you gesture, your tone of voice, the volume you’re speaking at, your framing and eye contact, and so on. There’s so much to consider for both in-person and virtual presentations, and everything in the series either served as a good reminder or was a net-new best practice to adopt.
Were there any added benefits of doing this training series through MAGNET versus individually?
Shaman: Yes, one of the things that made this series even stronger was that it was a MAGNET program. After completing the training with our peers and taking the time to discuss how we could apply the learnings, many of us found ways to make improvements to our approaches immediately.
Campbell: Exactly. It was really beneficial to go through the training with new faces and different perspectives. It provided the opportunity to hear what challenges your peers are facing and the solutions they use to overcome them. A win-win for everyone.
Interested in joining MAGNET and/or the Leadership Council? Reach out to us today to learn more.