CommonSense Blog

The T-Factor

By Jennifer Paganelli | Nov 04, 2015

Cly 10

Being the “new kid” at W2O Group is equal parts exciting, scary, inspiring and eye-opening. And joining a new agency for the first time in five years has resurfaced a key idea for me – how the diversity in a group amplifies all of the individual talent within. I call this an agency’s “t-factor.”

In our industry, we’re constantly discussing the “talent pool” and how to bring on the best of the best. Whether in media relations (my area of expertise), digital, analytics, account management, etc. But the problem is that we tend to focus on roles in isolation, and not in relation to a broader ecosystem. We look at expertise and skill sets in solving a specific or immediate problem. And that can lead to homogeneity – in background and in thought.

That’s why I’m so happy to already see in my short time at W2O that our most talented colleagues come from completely different backgrounds and disciplines. Take this stellar earned media team – it’s an eclectic mix of smart and curious media specialists, former account executives and former journalists who’ve come over to the “other side”. This type of mix benefits our entire team and enables us to counsel clients in the most effective way possible. It helps create true empathy, since we’re evaluating decisions from all different vantage points.

Fifteen years ago this wouldn’t have been the case. Today it’s a different game – the talent pool is filled with specialists, generalists, tinkerers and everything in between. And that’s incredible for all of us. Growing, learning and shadowing others is not only encouraged, but expected here – how refreshing!

In the few short weeks since joining W2O Group, I’ve had the pleasure of working with a stellar mix of all-star colleagues with backgrounds as varied as could be – former C-suite execs, reporters, political advisors and even former clients. Selfishly, I know working with all these folks means I’ll be stretched, molded and taught by the best of the best in our industry. It’s a little daunting, but as a result, I know my personal t-factor will only increase.

Bottom line? Today’s talent pool must be diverse, varied and multidisciplinary – in both experience and thought. I’m thrilled to jump into that pool here at W2O Group.