Jonathan Goodman joined LIDA in 2010 and became Managing Director in 2014, when LIDA earned the title of Campaign Agency of the Year.
In 2016, he became Partner and President of LIDA New York, before returning to London in January 2018 to lead the UK business
We find out what Goodman does on a typical day, and why he believes passion, resilience and ‘saying yes’ are essential character traits in the agency world.
Please describe your job: What do you do?
Jonathan Goodman: I’m the CEO of LIDA, a customer marketing agency with offices in London, New York and Sydney.
Whereabouts do you sit within the organisation? Who do you report to?
Jonathan Goodman: I’m part of M&C Saatchi’s Worldwide Board, which is made up of the Group’s leaders from over 15 different agencies, covering all aspects of the marketing mix. We call ourselves a federation of entrepreneurs, as we have the ability to make decisions about our own businesses and act in a flexible, entrepreneurial way. I report to M&C Saatchi Group Worldwide CEO, Moray MacLennan.
What kind of skills do you need to be effective in your role?
Jonathan Goodman: I talk a lot about pride and passion. I believe that you need to have a huge amount of pride in what you do, as an individual and as a company creating marketing for brands kind enough to pay you for the pleasure. Passion is essential if you are going to remain resilient and focussed on getting the very best outcomes. On top of that, as a business leader, you need to be able to make a decision and move forward, otherwise you – and everyone around you – spend too much time spinning.
Tell us about a typical working day…
Jonathan Goodman: One of the best things about my job is there isn’t really a typical day – no ‘Eat, Work, Sleep, Repeat’. As I’m a morning person, I do most of my more involved tasks first thing. I also try to avoid being in back-to-back meetings all day, as it leaves no informal time with colleagues or much space to think. A quick swim at lunchtime really tees me up for a good afternoon, but happens much less frequently than I’d like, so should be filed under an ‘ideal’ not ‘typical’ working day!
What do you love about your job? What sucks?
Jonathan Goodman: I’m privileged to be working with a group of people who I genuinely love spending time with. We are all very different, but a certain LIDA gene unites us and means we move forward as a unit, having a lot of fun along the way.
What kind of goals do you have? What are the most useful metrics and KPIs for measuring success?
Jonathan Goodman: I want to create a truly progressive company, that isn’t scared to go its own way and break new ground. I think the most useful KPIs are big, simple ones that everyone can really get behind.
What are your favourite tools to help you to get the job done?
Jonathan Goodman: Not very inspiring, but I find the iPhone Reminders app has become increasingly important to help me tick off the to-do list. To be honest, this is more about not dropping a ball than getting the job done!
How did you end up at Lida, and where might you go from here?
Jonathan Goodman: I went for an interview and met two incredibly talented people – Lisa Thomas, who founded LIDA and Mel Edwards the then CEO. They pretty much had me at ‘Hello’.
Going forward, the plan is to continue building the LIDA brand globally by expanding into new territories and winning more pan-European, NY-Lon and global business.
Which brands / experiences have impressed you lately?
Jonathan Goodman: I like what RIMOWA is doing, taking a fairly traditional luxury brand and bringing it up to date with its Never Still work. It’s modern celebrity endorsement done right (with fans including Virgil Abloh and Adwoa Aboah) and has made me add a new suitcase to my wish list.
I’m also loving Patch Plants, maybe because they’ve elevated plants to lifestyle accessories (you can even check yours into their Patch Plant Hotel when you’re on holiday). They’re doing customer engagement really well, with plant care courses and other ways to get you engaged in their category.
Finally, in terms of cool experiences, it’s hard to beat Dashlane. It’s all about utility. Forgot password headaches. Honestly, download it now – it’s a game-changer.
What advice would you give a marketer starting out in 2019?
Jonathan Goodman: Say yes to everything and do things that are outside of your job description. The people who do this really stand out and become the ‘ones to watch’.