Inside the Industry: Sub Nijjar, UNION CREATIVEWednesday, December 05, 2012
This month, Boost Agents features Subtej Nijjar, Partner at UNION CREATIVE LTD. We're honoured to be able to share this content with you.
Subtej, known as Sub, has been working in the industry for just over ten years and has accomplished a great deal at a young age. He has worked in many different capacities from Account Services to more digital and strategic roles. He recently launched UNION, a new integrated creative agency built for solving evolving business challenges. UNION is led in partnership with Lance Martin, former Executive Creative Director of Taxi 2, and Dave Carey, formerly of Lowe Roche. We spoke to Sub about what he’s excited about in light of this new venture.
Tell us about some of the unexpected turns you’ve taken in your career and where they landed you. If you had to do it all over again knowing what you know now, what would you have done differently?
Well, having started out in the agency world as a summer intern at Ogilvy and then going client side at Microsoft, before heading back to the agency world, I have had my fair share of unexpected turns early on in my career. However, over the last eight years I have been lucky to work at some great agencies and with some of the smartest people I have ever met. I think the biggest difference for me was worrying less about the role I had at a company and more about finding the right environment that could help me learn, grow and contribute. Once I realized that, it has been quite a fun ride that does not seem to have an end in sight. So, would I change anything? Not sure I would, because it seems like you need to go through some of the unexpected turns to realize where you really want to go. You just need to make sure you go through the speed bumps safely.
Tell us about the skills and desired life experiences that make up a strong strategic planner. Beyond what is on a candidate’s resume, what things interest you in a potential hire?
I have always relied less on the actual marketing/advertising skills someone has listed and more about the things they have done or are passionate about in their daily life. I’ve tried very hard not to build a cookie-cutter planning department, and to do this one needs to find people with complimentary personalities and skills. That way, you can create an environment that has many different ways to look at a single problem. So, you need to look for people that you can learn something from and that bring something to the party and that can be anything from readingPsychology Today for fun to playing in a band. You want to look for people that have a life outside of work, people that live in the culture we try mine insights from and not just smart marketers who have an education in how to define what an insight is.
From left to right: Dave Carey, Subtej Nijjar, Lance Martin
In light of the closing of the CP + B Toronto office and the opening of your new venture UNION, what are you most excited about?
I’m most excited about getting the chance to work with Lance and Dave to build a great culture around where we think advertising is headed. There are some great agencies in this country and there are only a few things that really set everyone apart. The most important of which is the team you have and how well that team works together. So, we are excited to create a culture where our team has a ton of fun working with great brands.
To continue reading the rest of this interview, please visit the blog on the Boost Agents site.