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18 Years of Agent - Jeanette's Perspective

Agent’s 18th birthday has been the talk of the office for quite some time, birthdays are always something special here, and we definitely know how to celebrate in style!

This year has been no different, we had an Away Day which saw us spend time together as a full team, talking and planning all things Agent, we have a new website launching, a whole raft of comms going out and of course we couldn’t let the day pass without some cake!!

But what do I think of when the topic of our 18th birthday comes up? I think ‘How on earth are we 18? Where has that time gone?’

It doesn’t feel so long ago that Paul told me he was starting a marketing company that was going to do things differently – not just in terms of the work that was produced and how it was created, but also being a values-led business, , a unique proposition at a time when this wasn’t  a huge focus for organisations. People would be at the heart of everything that the new business would do.

18 years on and this is still very much the case – people, planet and place are the soul of everything that Agent stands for.

I started at Agent in 2012, over 12 years ago, as head of communications, then onto Operations Director and was recently became Managing Director, but I’ve always been part of Agent even before I worked here. I’ve seen it grow from Paul having meetings in The Quarter in Liverpool, as our first office had no meeting space; I’ve seen us grow from a business that offered just strategy and PR to a full-service agency with a team of 40 (and of course many dogs) I’ve seen us grow to a business with a conscience, where we’re all about powerfully good business and working with selected, liked minded businesses who strive to make a difference – just like we do.

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So, what is it that I love about Agent? – I love that 18 years on we still do things differently – we’re a business that constantly pushes ourselves, we put our money where our mouth is – we truly believe in values and the importance of powerfully good business, and the evidence of this speaks for itself.

I could go on for quite a while about all the things that we have done over 18 years, one personal highlight is supporting our friend Frances Malloy to change the law with the Tyred campaign ensuring a ban on the use of tyres 10 years or older on buses, coaches, minibuses and good vehicles.

Helping to organise a concert at the M&S Arena in Liverpool for support Ukraine was a personal highlight for me – we turned it round in two weeks. Musicians, comedians, city leaders and businesses all joined forces to stage a one-off event to support families fleeing from war. It really was an achievement to be proud of.

Another is our All You Read Is Love campaign – it gets bigger and better year on year – 2023 was our biggest to date with over £30,000 worth of books being gifted to children and young people across the North West.  

We’re a purpose driven business that is passionate about not only the work we deliver, but also the communities we work in. In its simplest form – we care, and that will never change.

It’s important to us to lead by example – Agent Academy is a prime example of this when we launched it to support young people into the creative and digital industry – ten years on and our first graduates are now in senior roles in the industry.

What I love about Agent is the fact that nothing is ever off the table – be a case study on The One Show to trial the six-hour working day? - sure why not, help build a school in Kenya? – let’s do it, introduce the four-day working week? – why wouldn’t we?

We have grown, evolved and learnt a lot over the past 18 years, but what I will say is that we’re still the same business at our core - where culture and values shape who we are and what we do – people are the most important thing to us, whether that’s our team, our clients or our networks - Agent will always be a home from home.