- Tech Insights
When Adam Byars, CEO & Partner of Grid Worldwide, is asked what it means to be a leader, his answer is inspirational and mesmerizing. “There are many books and talks on this topic, but being a leader is grounded in being human. The best leaders don’t have the right answers. They ask the right questions. Being a leader means you serve your team and that they don’t serve you. I choose to lead with passion, humility and gratitude.”
Adam is successfully taking Grid towards new heights. The company was incorporated in 2006 by Nathan Reddy, who is now one of the most awarded Creatives on the continent. Grid was born with a philosophy of making things beautiful, creating meaning, and delivering value for brands (and clients) while ensuring their work has a lasting impact on society. By positioning creativity as an investment, the Grid team has become obsessively involved in their client’s business, resulting in a shift to a value-based remuneration model that emphasizes results, not the hours spent. “This way of working leads to more proactive thinking and creates an agile, fluid way of operating that lays the foundation for a relationship based on trust and mutual respect. It also allows us to stay true to who we have always been at heart - the make it mean something company,” says the steadfast leader.
"We recognize what draws consumers to great brands with, the consumer takeout being that it must inform me, entertain me, inspire me and make it beautiful."
According to Adam, one of the biggest challenges organizations face is finding their true meaning, relevance, and authenticity. “What’s the one thing you want the world to remember about you? Defining your relevance allows you then to take a single-minded approach to deliver on that one thing every day,” he says. “Our job at Grid is to find that meaning, and then amplify it, shifting an organizations culture and giving them something to believe in.”
Adam and his team work towards invigorating brands by sticking to original, conceptual, and inspiring ideas, which are well executed and relevant—they always seek to find the meaning of something—the human insight and truth. “Once you find this interrogate it, and find its true meaning. Build your essence and relevance around this meaning,” says Adam. “We recognize what draws consumers to great brands with, the consumer takeout being that it must inform me, entertain me, inspire me and make it beautiful.” Adam explains that all their work must be grounded in meaning and authenticity. “It’s our job to then bring this to life in a way that has a lasting impact on your life. Our work must move you; you must feel it.”
With the advent of Pandemic, Adam thinks that the rules of engagement have changed and, since they are still being rewritten, no one knows exactly what they are or what they will be. “We’re all being forced to adapt, recreate and rebuild. So, it’s important that as CEO you are clear on the kind of leader you want to be,” he says. “Great leaders enable people around them to believe in the unbelievable, so during a crisis make sure you instill a sense of calm and belief in the future ambitions of the organisation despite the chaos around you. Give people something to believe in, something to work towards.”
The greatest achievement for Grid has been how they have continued to evolve their offering, focusing on three key aspects of the business, including Disruptive Growth, Playing in Culture, and The Power of Creativity to change the world. Grid is more than an agency; it’s a belief, an obsession, in creating value for their clients and their business’s interns of brand value and brand love. “Our focus on local projects is the idea of building national pride whilst enabling every South African in dealing with our day to day lives. Whilst the work we doing on the continent is focused on showcasing Africa Talent, Pride and Investment opportunities,” says Adam.
Key projects to look out for in coming months spanning across the continent include work in Rwanda, Uganda and Nigeria whilst also working with clients in Singapore and Germany. IE
CEO & Partner of Grid Worldwide
The world doesn’t need another brand. Branding is not one thing, it’s all-encompassing. It’s the ad you see on TV; the billboard you see on the highway and the conversation people have about you. It’s the perception of a brand that we value. We create, refresh and invigorate brands. We believe that original, conceptual and inspiring ideas, which are well executed and relevant, will always create value. What the world needs are brands that really mean something.